Welcome to our new three-part series regarding chiropractic care during pregnancy! Over the next few weeks, I want to share with you reasons why regular appointments with a chiropractor can help you both physically and emotionally throughout this magical time. Your body is going to drastically change over the next 9 months as it prepares to bring new life into the world. Your spine is going to structurally change, which will impede your body’s ability to communicate with itself. You may also begin to experience back pain, sore muscles, and headaches. But do not fear! Chiropractic care can help alleviate all of these side effects and natural un-pleasantries of pregnancy.
“The best use of chiropractic, in general, has to do with musculoskeletal problems, and, in pregnancy, a lot of women have problems that are caused by the uterus being off-center,” says Mary Hammond-Tooke, a certified nurse-midwife at The Maternity Center in Bethesda, Md. “The uterus is pulling out in front and not well-balanced in back.”
Let’s discuss why chiropractic care is a great addition to your pregnancy wellness routine.
Structural Changes in the Spine:
Chiropractic care is meant to help keep your spine in alignment. And also helps with any joint and ligament stiffness/discomfort. These same principles certainly apply to pregnancy. There are several physiological and endocrinological changes that occur within a mother when creating the environment for her developing baby. Some of these changes also include:
- Protruding abdomen and increased back curve
- Pelvic changes
- Postural adaptations
New levels of hormones affect the body’s structure as well and can cause ligament flexibility. Carol Phillips, a chiropractor whose practice deals with almost exclusively pregnant women states, “When women are pregnant, you can almost blow on them to make the adjustment because of the ligament laxity [due to hormones]. You just put your hands in the right position to allow the muscles to make the adjustment.”
As you can see chiropractic care during pregnancy can certainly help relieve the back and leg pain. But it can also help to relieve discomfort from “out of whack” hormones as well!
Let’s be honest, pregnancy is really hard on the body. Not only does the body change in structure but it also rapidly changes in weight as well. As your baby grows and gets heavier, the weight of your expanding belly changes your posture and spinal curvature. This new weight gain forces your body to adapt to the additional stress now placed all over your body.
Normally when a person gains weight, it gets dispersed all over the body. This is a reason why we can’t really troubleshoot weight loss. But for new mother’s, there is only one place the weight is going, the front and center of their body. This is why there is so much back pain involved in pregnancy, as women have to relearn their center of gravity and compensate their posture accordingly.
Just like the spinal changes, weight change negatively affects joint function and nerve communication. This is another reason why chiropractic care during pregnancy is so important. Even just a few sessions throughout you term can restore proper posture and prevent some of the pregnancy stressors and pain that affect most women.
As the spine, joints, and weight changes during pregnancy, pelvic balance is thrown off as well. When the pelvic balance is off, the room available for your developing baby could be reduced. This is a problem referred to as intrauterine constraint. Chiropractors can actually adjust the pelvis to prevent this issue and also lessen the chances of having a breeched presentation.
Chiropractic care during pregnancy can also help shorten labor and even make the entire birthing process easier. This is especially crucial for mothers who wish for a drug-free and natural birth.
Need More Incentive to Try Chiropractic Care During Pregnancy?
All chiropractors can provide chiropractic care during pregnancy. However, Dr. Zock is certified in the Webster Technique. This is a technique that we will discuss next week. For more reassurance, please take a look at our testimonials and see how Zock Family Chiropractic has been helping expectant mothers for years. As always, simply contact us to schedule an introductory chiropractic session so we can discuss your needs and help keep you as comfortable as possible over the course of your pregnancy!