Pregnancy and Back Pain

Pregnancy and Back Pain
By Destiny Cooper, D.C.

The average woman will experience a 25-35 pound weight gain during pregnancy and over half of them will have some type of back, hip, or groin pain. What about    the other half? Are they just lucky or are there structural and functional
differences in their bodies that most women don’t have? I believe there are, but it’s not by chance. These differences are a result of the mother’s dedication to
exercise, eating well, and regular chiropractic care.

As a chiropractor, I often face people who are hesitant and reluctant to be
adjusted, even more so when they are carrying their unborn child. I become their last resort at which point their back pain is so severe they are unable to function in their daily activities. When these patients learn that my method involves a non-invasive light force technique called, Sacro-Occipital Technique, the normal response is, “I wish I would have known about you earlier so my pregnancy wouldn’t have been so miserable!”

The main aggravator of back pain in pregnancy is the shift of gravity in the body. The woman’s abdomen grows, pulling her forward and increasing stress on her lower back. The pregnancy progresses and the mother releases a hormone known as relaxin. Relaxin loosens up her pelvis and the structures relating to her sacro-iliac ligaments which hold her tailbone in place with her pelvis. Many women can begin to experience hip, groin and/or leg pain which can be so severe it keeps her from sitting, laying down, or even walking short distances.

By pursuing a chiropractic education focusing on prenatal and postnatal care for women, it has provided me many tools and techniques to help women during their pregnancy as well as any post natal struggles that they face. I work to release muscle tension, increase pelvic stability and provide a nutritionally stable environment for a growing baby and the mother. It has been wonderful to see these mothers enjoy their pregnancy and successfully and comfortably carry out their daily activities caring for their families. It’s not an easy job to grow a person, but with simple exercises, stretches, and light chiropractic care it can be a comfortable one.