The miracle of conception, pregnancy and delivery is truly magical. The emotional and physiological changes that a woman’s body, brain and psyche go through during these stages is mindboggling. The human body is truly amazing!
Women are raised with the knowledge to seek out care through an OBGYN and/or Licensed Midwife during pregnancy but are typically not as educated on the importance of also seeking out chiropractic care. However, chiropractic care in pregnancy is “vital to the normal physiological function of both the mother and baby throughout the pregnancy and birth” (1)
Here are 5 benefits of receiving chiropractic care during pregnancy.
- Reduced Back and Hip Pain
During pregnancy, the female body goes through a tremendous amount of physiological changes to prepare for the developing baby. These changes include weight gain, postural changes, gait changes, pelvic changes, protruding abdomen, and increased back curve, all of which can result in pain caused by subluxations, also known as spinal misalignments (2, 4). In addition, hormonal changes result in a loosening of the ligaments and joints in the pelvic area, resulting in hypermobility which can also cause pain and a decrease in spinal stabilization (7). Chiropractic adjustments can help correct spinal misalignments and help relieve back and pelvic pain due to the relaxed ligaments.
- Reduction in Other Pregnancy Related Symptoms
The physiological and hormonal changes during pregnancy can cause many other issues which can have a detrimental effect on the comfort and emotional wellbeing of the expectant mother. Chiropractic care during pregnancy has been shown to decrease headaches, neck pain, sciatic nerve pain, sacroiliac pain, pubic symphysis pain and round ligament pain (4, 5). In addition, chiropractic treatments have been shown to be a “highly effective” therapy for other pregnancy symptoms including heartburn, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, headaches, insomnia, hypersomnia and hypersalivating (6).
- Optimal Baby Positioning
Pelvic misalignments can lead to a variety of issues including a reduction in the room available for the developing baby. When the baby does not have enough room, it can make it more difficult for the baby to get into the proper position for delivery. When a baby is unable to get into the proper position, with head down, this may result in a breech position, which accounts for 3%-4.6% of all pregnancies (7). If uncorrected, many of these cases will result in a C-section delivery. However, a technique, called the Webster Technique can often help. Many chiropractors, including Dr. Iszler, are trained in the Webster Technique, which is a technique that has been clinically associated with improved pregnancy outcomes (3).
“The Webster Technique is a specific chiropractic sacral analysis and diversified adjustment. The goal of the adjustment is to reduce the effects of sacral subluxation/SI joint dysfunction. In doing so the neuro-biomechanical function in the pelvis is facilitated. Sacral subluxations may contribute to difficult labor for the mother, (i.e., dystocia), caused by inadequate uterine function, pelvic contraction and baby malpresentation. Correction of sacral subluxation may have a positive effect on all of these causes of dystocia” (1).
In a nutshell, the Webster Technique helps establish pelvic balance and alignment, reduce stress to the uterus and supporting ligaments allowing for optimal fetal positioning resulting in a reduction in C-section deliveries (7).
- Reduced Labor Times
Research has shown that there is likely a correlation between back pain, pregnancy, and labor times. Studies have shown 75%-84% of pregnant women who received chiropractic care during their pregnancies found relief from their pain which then correlates to a faster labor time. Women who received chiropractic care throughout their pregnancy had 25%-31% shorter labor times (7).
- Safer and More Comfortable Deliveries
Women who receive chiropractic care have statistically fewer rates of complications including Meconium-stained amniotic fluid, preterm delivery, the use of forceps and C-sections (7). Chiropractic care helps decrease the incidence of “back labor”. The “relative risk of experiencing back labor was almost 3 times greater if back pain was experienced during the pregnancy” (7).
Are there risk to receiving chiropractic care during pregnancy?
Chiropractic care has been shown to be a safe, effective, drug free way to manage back and pelvic pain as well as other musculoskeletal symptoms during pregnancy (4). There are no known contraindications to chiropractic care during pregnancy (2). All Chiropractors are trained to work with women who are pregnant. However, some chiropractors have additional training in working with infertility and pregnancy wellness. Chiropractors working with pregnant women will oftentimes use special tables that have adjusting pieces and may adjusting in height to accommodate the pregnant women’s body. In addition, they have been trained to use techniques that are safe and do not put pressure on the abdomen.
Trinity Chiropractic offers prenatal chiropractic care to help you experience the best possible pregnancy. We have helped many other moms and look forward to helping you too!