Pregnancy is supposed to be a happy time for women. But sometimes, it can be uncomfortable. Many pregnant women feel pain in their lower back and hips. About half of all pregnant women will have back pain at some point before they give birth.
Now, discuss why pregnant women have back pain and how upper cervical chiropractic can help. We’ll also see how upper cervical chiropractic can improve prenatal health and birth.
Many pregnant women have back pain, and you’re not alone if you’re experiencing it too. Around 50–70% of pregnant women have back pain. The pain usually happens where the spine and pelvis meet, called the (sacroiliac) SI joint.
Why does pregnancy cause back pain? While the weight gain of 25–35 pounds during pregnancy is one reason, four other situations can cause back pain.
Changes in posture — It’s not only about how much weight you gain but also where that weight is distributed. When most of the extra weight (around 25–35 pounds) is in front of your body, it changes your balance. You might have noticed that even the way you walk is different now. This change in posture can strain your spine and cause discomfort.
Hormone levels — When a woman’s body prepares for childbirth, it produces a hormone called relaxin. This hormone helps loosen the ligaments and joints in the pelvis area. Sometimes, these hormones can also affect the spine, not just the pelvis joints and ligaments.
Stress — When we feel stressed, it often affects our neck and shoulders. That’s why stress can lead to neck, and back pain, and headaches. If you’re experiencing emotional stress, whether it’s related to your pregnancy or not, it could be contributing to your back pain.
Nerve compression — As the baby grows, the increased size and weight may pressure some nerves or blood vessels in your back. This pressure can also cause back pain.
Considering all these things happening, it’s surprising that more women don’t have back pain while pregnant. Now, let’s see how chiropractic care for the upper part of your neck can help you manage this pain without putting you or your baby in danger.
When someone has terrible back pain, many doctors usually give them medicine to help with the pain. But it’s not good to take strong pain medicine, like opioids, if you’re pregnant. The March of Dimes website explains that mixing opioids and pregnancy can be dangerous. So it’s crucial to find natural ways to feel better. You can do a few things at home to lower the chance of having back pain while pregnant. Some of them are:
1. Avoid sleeping on your back.
2. Ask your doctor for a simple exercise routine to strengthen your back muscles without hurting your baby.
Wear shoes with good support, and avoid wearing high heels until after birth.
4. Raise your feet when you take a break.
5. Instead of bending at the waist, squat down to pick up objects from the ground.
6. Consider using a support belt.
7. Visit a chiropractor who specializes in upper neck adjustments.
Dr. Berner examining a patient
Upper cervical chiropractors provide a type of chiropractic care that is gentle and precise. Instead of focusing on the lower back, they concentrate on the top two bones of the spine. This type of chiropractic care can also address the causes of back pain during pregnancy.
The health of your spine starts from the top and goes downward. Keeping your C1 and C2 bones in alignment is essential to manage changes in your posture. The C1 bone, also known as the atlas, surrounds the brainstem, which is crucial for controlling the release of hormones. Proper alignment in the upper cervical spine can also help you manage stress because the central nervous system (CNS), which affects emotions, functions better. Many vital functions, such as blood flow to the brain and cerebrospinal fluid drainage, are related to the upper cervical spine.
Upper cervical chiropractic care is considered safe because the adjustments are gentle. Having someone forcefully bend your spine or pop your vertebrae is undesirable. Gentle corrections that target the upper neck area ensure that there is no unnecessary pressure on the abdomen.
If your pelvis is not aligned correctly, it can limit the space for your developing baby. This is called intrauterine constraint when an outside force blocks your baby’s regular movements and can lead to congenital disabilities.
Another problem with a misaligned pelvis is that it can make it difficult for your baby to get into the correct position for birth, which is head down and facing the rear.
Sometimes, this can make it harder for a woman to have a natural and noninvasive birth. A balanced pelvis also reduces the chances of the baby being in a breech or posterior position, making delivery longer and more complicated.
Evidence suggests that pregnant women receiving chiropractic care may have better labor and delivery outcomes. It might even help shorten the duration of labor.
Additionally, getting regular chiropractic care during pregnancy can provide the following benefits:
· Help you have a healthier and more comfortable pregnancy.
· Relieve pain in your back, neck, hips, and joints.
· Assist in managing symptoms of nausea.
Properly aligning your spine and pelvis when giving birth is essential. When your spine and pelvis are aligned correctly, it’s easier for your baby to come out, and it can reduce the chances of complications. Even after giving birth, getting chiropractic care for the upper part of your neck can benefit you and your baby. It’s a gentle treatment that can help if problems during birth cause misalignment.
Ultimately, the most important thing is for you and your baby to be happy and healthy. Trying upper cervical chiropractic care could be an excellent way to achieve that. You can find a practitioner in your area and schedule a consultation to see if this natural option suits your family.
Dr. Berner does not diagnose, treat, or prevent any medical diseases or conditions; instead, he analyzes and corrects the structure of his patients with Foundational Correction to improve their overall quality of life. He works with their physicians, who regulate their medications. This blog post is not designed to provide medical advice, professional diagnosis, opinion, treatment, or services to you or any other individual. The information provided in this post or through linkages to other sites is not a substitute for medical or professional care. You should not use the information in place of a visit, consultation, or the advice of your physician or another healthcare provider. Foundation Chiropractic and Dr. Brett Berner are not liable or responsible for any advice, the course of treatment, diagnosis, or any other information, services, or product you obtain through this article or others.
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