When you’re pregnant, there are many aches and pains that go along with the territory, including pregnancy related back pain. According to the American Pregnancy Association, 50 to 70 percent of all pregnant women deal with some level of back pain during their pregnancy. But, just because you have pain, doesn’t mean you have to suffer through it. There are things you can do to seek relief. Let’s take a look at the sources of back pain during pregnancy and how chiropractic services may be able to help.
What causes pregnancy related back pain?
While back pain can occur at any point during pregnancy, it is most common later as the baby gets bigger. There are many factors that can contribute to back pain. Here’s a look at the most common ones:
- Shift in gravity
When you’re pregnant, gravity isn’t your best friend! Not only does it become increasingly difficult to bend over to tie your shoes or pick up a piece of paper off the floor, but your growing baby can also do a number on your posture. When your back is not properly aligned, you’ll experience pain.
- Additional weight
Any additional weight, like growing another human being inside of you, can put a strain on your bones, leading to back pain.
- Hormone increase
Hormones are responsible for more than mood swings during pregnancy. Hormones release throughout your pregnancy to allow the ligaments in the pelvis area to soften and your joints to become looser so you can give birth. This shift can impact the support your back normally gets, resulting in more aches and pains than you’re used to.
- Stress on your back
When parts of your body begin to get weak, they get stressed. With all of the added water and weight, pregnancy brings with it, your back can get the brunt of it.
- Weakened abdominal muscles
During pregnancy, your abdominal muscles become stretched and may weaken as a result. This is important to note because your abdominal muscles support the spine and impact your back.
How can I deal with pregnancy related back pain?
Any pain during pregnancy, including back pain, should be reported to your doctor. He or she can assess your situation and let you know whether it’s just a normal part of your pregnancy or something more concerning. Back pain can signal a urinary tract infection as well as pre-term labor. If your back pain is associated with fever, vaginal bleeding, or burning during urination, you should contact your doctor right away.
If your back pain is just a normal part of your pregnancy, there are things you can do to get relief.
- Practice good posture
Your growing baby can put a strain on your back and impact your posture. In order to help the situation, stand up tall and straight and keep your shoulders back and relaxed at all times. Also, choose a seat with good back support.
- Skip the heels
Having a good pair of low-heeled shoes can really help ease back pain. Avoid high heels because they can make you lean forward, even more, hurting your back and putting you at risk of falling. Low-heeled shoes with good arch support are a better choice.
- Sleep on your side
Sleep on your side, not your back with one or both knees bent to alleviate pressure on your back. A pregnancy or support pillow between your knees can also help as well as one under your abdomen or behind your back. It may be a case of trial and error to see which pillow positions work best.
Chiropractic care and pregnancy related back pain
If approved by your doctor, chiropractic care can be another useful way to deal with pregnancy related back pain. Of course, when you’re pregnant, you may be limited to the types of therapy you can receive. Many medications are off limits and some women are even warned about the effects over-the-counter drugs can have on their pregnancies. That’s another reason why chiropractic care can be beneficial during pregnancy. It is non-medicinal and can have lasting benefits. Studies have shown that people who receive chiropractic care can resolve their issues more quickly.
A chiropractor will use spinal manipulation to help ease your back pain as well as other therapies. They will assess your specific pain and develop a treatment plan that works for you. Chiropractic care during pregnancy has several benefits including:
- Relieving back, neck and joint pain
- Controlling nausea symptoms
- Possibly reducing the time of labor and delivery
- Helping you to maintain a healthier pregnancy overall
When you’re pregnant, a visit to the chiropractor can also help with pelvic balance and alignment. A misaligned pelvis can lead to problems because it may reduce the amount of room the baby has as they grow. This can make it difficult for the baby to get in the best position for delivery, possibly forcing the baby to go into the breech position. When the baby is in the breech position, it can make it more difficult for a woman to have a vaginal delivery.
A chiropractor may also recommend other things you can do at home, like being more mindful of your posture, to increase the benefits of care. You may also be shown simple, low-impact exercises and stretches you can do at home when you feel your back pain setting in.
If you would like more information on chiropractic care for pregnancy related back pain, contact The Family Chiropractic Clinic. Call us today at 940-566-0000 to schedule your appointment and to begin getting the back pain relief you deserve during pregnancy.