Pregnancy & Chiropractic
We frequently receive calls from moms-to-be seeking a Brookfield chiropractor specializing in care for pregnant patients. The most common questions are about the different chiropractic techniques that can be used to help facilitate proper prenatal positioning of the baby or whether we can help resolve some type of spine or pelvic pain they are experiencing either during or after pregnancy.
They also often ask if we can resolve chronic biomechanical issues resulting from previous births and if chiropractic care can help them achieve a VBAC or avoid a cesarean. We’ll try our best to answer these questions (and more) here.
The Purpose of Chiropractic Care During Pregnancy
We’ll start with something nearly every pregnant woman experiences: dealing with back pain and pelvic pain. For some women this is just a temporary discomfort caused by the hormones produced by your body during pregnancy relaxing the muscles of pelvis and preparing it for the birth process. For other women, however, it can be a severe and chronic disorder that makes it difficult to sleep, walk, or even to sit comfortably for long. In severe cases this pain can even restrict them to a wheelchair or bedrest.
While some medical professionals will tell their patients that back pain and pelvic pain is “normal” in pregnancy and there is nothing that can be done, there’s nothing “normal” about pain that’s severe or long-lasting and in fact, many of the painful conditions associated with pregnancy can be helped through chiropractic care. A little discomfort now and again is common in pregnancy, but severe, long-lasting pain is the body’s way of drawing attention to a problem that needs to be fixed. It shouldn’t be ignored.
Many problems experienced during pregnancy occur when the spine or pelvis are misaligned or the muscles and ligaments surrounding them are unbalanced. This can result in low back pain, sciatica that begins in the buttocks and radiates down into the leg, pubic pain, pain in the hips or sacrum, sharp pain in the abdomen upon quick movement or sneezing, neck and upper back pain, difficulty walking or lifting the legs, or scapular/rib pain.
The good news is that pregnant patients are not without options when it comes to treating these problems. Chiropractic care is a safe, effective method of correcting these misalignments and eliminating the cause of the pain. Furthermore, regular maintenance chiropractic care can make pregnancy more comfortable and even help facilitate an easier labor and birth.
Regular Chiropractic Care Can Help Pregnant Patients In Several Ways:
- Keep the spine and pelvis well-aligned, maximizing the space available for baby to be maneuvered during delivery
- To optimize nervous system function so that contractions can be effective and coordinated
- To balance the joints, ligaments, and muscles of the supporting structures for the uterus so baby has the best chance to assume the healthiest possible position for growing and for being born easily
Optimizing Pelvic Positioning
The primary goal of chiropractic care during pregnancy is to make sure the pelvic structure surrounding the baby is as open and well-aligned as possible, creating space for the baby to maneuver during delivery. Many mothers who have had cesarean sections have been told that their sacrum is either too flat or prominent, that their pubic arch is too narrow, or simply that their pelvis is too small for a baby to pass through. However, after chiropractic care, many women who have had cesareans in prior pregnancies have gone on to give birth vaginally, simply because the pelvic passage is now aligned and the baby has more room to move.
Improving Nerve Function
As chiropractors, we also place great importance on proper nerve function, as misaligned vertebra can impede nerve function. During delivery, a compromised nervous system can lead to contractions that are ineffective and uncoordinated. By correcting misalignments, chiropractors help eliminate nerve irritation which in turn allow the uterine muscles work as intended. So, the goal of a chiropractic adjustment is proper nerve function, not just “cracking” joints.
Preventing Malposition Complications
Finally, pregnant mothers-to-be who complain of back and pelvic pain tend to have a higher rate of malpositioned babies, particularly in breech, asynclitic, and posterior positions. This is often caused by a misaligned lumbar spine or pelvis creating tension or “constraint” in the structures supporting the uterus, which in turn cause the baby to become “stuck” in a problematic position and lead to a difficult, painful labor.
Correcting any biomechanical dysfunction in the lumbar spine or pelvis will reduce in-utero constraint, thus helping babies be positioned more advantageously and helping women have safer, easier and more effective labors and births.
The overall goal of chiropractic care during pregnancy is to ensure that the pregnancy, labor, and birth is as smooth and easy as possible for both the mother and baby. Receiving treatment from a chiropractor during pregnancy may actually mean the difference between a cesarean and a normal vaginal birth, prevent birth trauma for them or their newborn, and improve their long-term quality of life.
Looking for a Brookfield prenatal chiropractor for care during pregnancy? At Ascent Chiropractic Dr. Grant Radermacher specializes in a gentle, hands-on, low-force adjusting technique that gives his the ability to treat everyone from moms-to-be to newborns to seniors. To make an appointment today, call us at 262-345-4166 or use our online scheduling app.