by Dr. Andrea Burke DC
Regular chiropractic care during a pregnancy plays an important role in the health of both the mother and growing child. It keeps the mother feeling comfortable, while enabling her to cope with the physical changes going on in her body.
What are those changes?
- The hormone relaxin is released during pregnancy and causes all ligaments and muscles to relax, to prep for the coming birth. This hormone doesn’t just target the pelvis and can cause spinal joints to become misaligned, or subluxated.
- The addition of a baby growing inside means the addition of some extra weight. This will put a greater demand and fatigue on the muscles and ligaments of the spine. Plus, the natural curves of the spine are accentuated. These factors can increase the occurrence of pelvic subluxations, resulting in low back pain, sciatica, longer labor/delivery, and fetal distress.
- Subluxations in the pelvis can also lead to intrauterine constraint. One of the most common results of intrauterine constraint is a breech presentation of the baby. If the baby is breech during labor and delivery, it can cause more traumatic birth experiences for both mom and baby.
What are the benefits?
With regular chiropractic care, the expectant mother will experience many benefits to not only her own body, but to the developing baby inside of her. Because of the relaxation of her muscles and ligaments, the bones that are supported can become misaligned easier in the spine and pelvic region. When these misalignments are not corrected, the bones remain in an improper position, known as a subluxation. Subluxations in the spine or pelvis can be very uncomfortable for the mom. The nerves that exit the spine can become irritated causing pain, muscle weakness, sensory issues, and most importantly, improper functioning of the organs supporting her and her baby. Ensuring that the mother’s nervous system is functioning properly is essential for the development of the growing baby.
By correcting the subluxations the expecting mother’s organs will be functioning at their optimal potential. This also means that her baby is getting everything it needs to develop into a healthy, beautiful baby. In addition, she can feel relief from the pain in her spine and pelvis.
In addition to experiencing the health benefits under chiropractic care, studies have shown that expectant mothers receiving regular adjustments have a reduced time spent in labor. With the pelvis moving properly and the nerves free of interference, the mothers contractions will work more effectively to bring the baby into the birth canal. Webster’s Technique can be done throughout the entire pregnancy to ensure that the sacrum and pelvis can move freely. When this occurs the ligaments connected to the uterus remain relaxed which can contribute to proper positioning of the baby.
Is it safe?
A chiropractic adjustment for an expecting mother is a very safe and gentle adjustment. Extra care is given to ensure that the expecting mother is relaxed and each adjustment is both comfortable and specific.
Do not hesitate to get your nervous system checked if you are pregnant. It is an important addition to your preparatory measures for the arrival of your baby!