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Pregnancy is an incredible and exciting journey to motherhood! Along the way, many changes take place in your body while your baby is growing. During pregnancy, bones in your spine and pelvis move more freely to make room for your baby. This new position of the bones frequently causes increased pain in the pelvis and lower back. Abnormal positioning of the pelvic bones can interfere with the position and development of baby and can make delivery more challenging. Dr. Martin is trained in a specific technique, called the Webster technique to identify and treat subluxation, or misalignment, in the pelvis of pregnant women through gentle and specific chiropractic adjustments. A balanced and well aligned pelvis for Mom, means a relaxed and comfortable environment for baby to grow and thrive.
All the changes happening in a woman’s body while pregnant require compensations throughout her pelvis and spine, and this can lead to imbalances in pelvic muscles and ligaments. Some of these ligaments support her growing uterus. When the pelvic bones are balanced, the uterus is able to enlarge symmetrically with the growing baby. When they are out of balance, these ligaments pull on the uterus unequally, and may cause it to torque, reducing the amount of room for the developing baby. This is called intrauterine constraint.
In some cases, this constraint can prevent the baby from getting into the best possible position for birth. When this occurs it is known as a breech or malposition, and it can lead to longer, more painful labors with increased medical interventions, including c-sections.
More than just care for low back pain, many mothers have come to recognize the vital role that chiropractic care plays in a healthy pregnancy. A properly functioning spine and nervous system is an important part of getting pregnant and having a healthy pregnancy. Many mothers report back to their chiropractors that regular adjustments helped them feel healthier during their pregnancy. It has helped decrease their morning sickness, facilitated shorter labor and delivery times and increased an overall sense of well-being.
In addition, care can help with the following:
Back Pain. The position of your growing baby will cause your center of gravity to shift and your spine will naturally alter itself to accommodate this change. As a result, you may experience low back and pelvic pain. 84% of pregnant women that received chiropractic care received relief from low back pain.
Bone Health and Alignment. The increase in hormones during pregnancy can also cause muscles, ligaments, cartilage and even bones to “soften” and become more pliable. Pelvic bones may even become displaced or fixated. Since your hips will need to spread to accommodate the delivery of your baby, fixated pelvic bones can lead to complications during delivery.
Nervous System Health. It’s especially important during pregnancy for nerve impulses to flow from your brain throughout your body. A slightly out-of-place vertebra can create nerve irritation, which can interfere with your body’s nervous system. Chiropractic care can restore the function of your nervous system.
General Health and Comfort. Chiropractic care helps improve your overall wellness, increase your comfort during your pregnancy and help you have a safe, natural delivery. Research also shows that postpartum pain was relieved in 75% of moms that received regular chiropractic care.
Reduced Labor Time. Women under chiropractic care had nearly a 25% reduction in the average labor time verses the “generally accepted average labor time” (With women who had given birth in the past, that number rose to 33%).
The Webster Technique, developed by Dr. Larry Webster, founder of the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association, works to gently balance the bones, muscles and ligaments of the pelvis allowing the baby to get into the best possible position for birth. This leads to easier and safer delivery for both mother and baby. It is for this reason that many birth care providers are seeking Doctors of Chiropractic who are trained in this technique.
Chiropractic care throughout pregnancy allows for healthier function of the mother and baby and can be of great benefit in dealing with many of the common complaints of pregnancy, such as back pain, swelling of hands and feet, abdominal tension, reflux, etc. Seeking care early in pregnancy is a safe and effective method of supporting the natural birth process.
Emerging research supports that women who undergo chiropractic care throughout the duration of their pregnancy experience less pain during pregnancy, shorter labor time and faster recovery! Enjoy a delightful and healthy pregnancy with less stress when your chiropractor comes to you. Whether you are thinking of becoming a mother, trying to conceive, currently pregnant with your 1st or 5th, or in the postpartum period it's always a great time to start chiropractic care and get on the road to family wellness.