No one is more diligent about their care than a prenatal patient. That’s not a read. Pregnancy is arguably the most impressive thing the human body is capable of, it should be vaulted and celebrated and revered.
This isn’t political. It’s just my observations as a chiropractor for pregnant women in Springfield, IL. Frankly, we should all take our healthcare as seriously as pregnant women. The show doesn’t end, however, when the baby is born. In most postpartum women, it can take a year to fully recover from pregnancy and childbirth. Weird, I thought it was only six weeks.
Again, this isn’t political. ’Tis science.
Oftentimes my pregnant patients will stop seeking chiropractic care after the birth of their child, at perhaps the most critical time for them and the baby. I can’t think of anyone who would benefit from chiropractic more than someone whose joints, muscles, and ligaments have just been forced through a flume three sizes too small and then expected, with a jacked-up nervous system, to properly develop into a fully functioning member of society. But today is not about the kids, today is about the ladies.
I know that I don’t have to make an argument for chiropractic care during pregnancy with this crowd.
- Reduced nausea
- Shorter labor and delivery
- Reduced lower back pain, neck pain, and joint pain
- Lower chance of C-section
- Lower risk of pre-term delivery
- Reduced need for pain medication during delivery and pregnancy
- Faster recovery time
- Helps baby assume proper birthing position
- Provides adequate space for baby’s development
- Optimizes nervous system function for optimized resources for baby’s development
As amazing as the benefits of chiropractic during pregnancy are, they are just as amazing postpartum, and perhaps more important.
7 Benefits of Post-Pregnancy Chiropractic Care
Quicker Post-Pregnancy Healing
Being pregnant is hard. It’s a wonderful, beautiful miracle, but it can be a traumatic experience. The body undergoes things it wouldn’t ever tolerate normally. The healing process takes time as several different parts try to resume their normal function. The spine has endured a lot throughout pregnancy and delivery and it needs some TLC, along with the rest of the nervous system.
Chiropractors understand the vital role that the nervous system plays in the optimal function of the human body, but also in the restoration of the human body. This is the system after all that is charged with healing. By realigning the spine, optimizing the nervous system, we can relieve the stress that the body is under and kick the body’s self-healing process into high gear. The faster the better because the world doesn’t stop and expects moms to do the same.
Restores Normal Biomechanics
Women gain 25-35 lbs during pregnancy.
This additional weight shifts their center of gravity and applies pressure to the spine, spinal discs, spinal curvature, and joints in the lower extremities that they are not used to dealing with. During this time the body’s biomechanics are, how do I put this, busted. If this goes uncorrected, a patient could face the potential for long-term health consequences.
Postpartum women are also grappling with continued high levels of relaxin in their system. Even more so if they’re breastfeeding. Relaxin, a hormone the body produces to help loosen ligaments, makes labor easier but it creates instability in pregnant women’s joints that increase their risk for injury. Carrying a baby around the house with unstable joints sounds like a recipe for a disaster.
Strengthening the stabilizing muscles and assuring the ligaments are properly aligned before they tighten up helps prevent issues from sneaking in and wreaking havoc.
Expert Posture Advice
The increased weight and shifting of gravity that affects biomechanics also do a number on posture. Women’s bodies assume a lot of different postures though, both during pregnancy and after.
- Walking with extra weight
- Balancing a baby on their hip
- Picking a baby up from a crib
- Dare I say, crouching over the toilet bowl in the early hours of the morning…
Our spine was designed a certain way to keep us healthy, strong, functional, and out of pain. Maintaining an unnatural postural position for too long results in small, repetitive strain injuries that lead to pain.
Chiropractors see distorted postures in all walks of life from mothers, to kids, to athletes, to the elderly, to corporate warriors chained to their desks for hours on end. We know how to encourage good postural habits through corrective exercises and chiropractic adjustments.
Natural Pain Relief
Pregnant women experience all kinds of pain. Hormonal changes can cause pain, the added weight causes pain, unsupportive partners cause pain, it’s endless. These emotional and physical stresses, coupled with sleepless nights manifest themselves in:
- Neck pain
- Shoulder pain
- Low back pain
- Pelvic pain
- Hip pain
- Elbow pain
- Wrist pain
- Stomach pain
Name a part of the body and it’s probably in pain. Chiropractic care is a natural pain relief treatment that corrects the underlying cause of pain, usually, a musculoskeletal malfunction interfering with proper nerve function, to provide instant pain relief and prevent pain and injury in the future. It’s the perfect remedy for anyone trying to stay off of medication as they support the development of new life.
Babies do significant damage to a woman’s pelvis. Painful sex, weak pelvic muscles, and leaks can make new moms extremely frustrated. And rightly so. Many moms don’t recognize their postpartum look and the endless problems make motherhood seem like a giant trick God is playing on women.
Chiropractors can help with pelvic rehabilitation in significant ways. Realigning the sacroiliac joints to improve mobility, range of motion, and recovery of the core and pelvic floor muscles. Leaving these issues uncared for can ruin the joy of motherhood and begin to take its toll on romantic relationships as well.
Sciatica is a nightmare that usually happens during pregnancy as the baby’s weight and the expanding uterus compress the sciatic nerve leading to shooting pain through the buttock and into the legs. This problem can linger after birth, however, because, as nice as it would be, the uterus doesn’t just return to its normal size in a flash. Chiropractic care after pregnancy, but also during pregnancy, can help jumpstart the healing process as well as ensure alignment to relieve pressure on the sciatic nerve.
Eases Postpartum Depression
Pregnancy is physically and emotionally exhausting. Postpartum is not always the relief that women are hoping for. There’s anxiety about returning to their pre-baby body, intimacy, that they’re not living up to expectations, that something will go wrong with the baby, all compounded by sleepless nights waking up to breastfeed a screaming child. It is easy for this to snowball into a case of postpartum depression.
Chiropractors are holistic practitioners that understand the inextricable link between the mind and the body. We are an incredible support system for any health issue, including depression. Not to mention, chiropractic adjustments are incredible stress relievers. They physically remove stress on the nervous system which has incredible effects on how the body functions, but every adjustment releases endorphins. ENDORPHINS!!
It’s a win-win-win.
There is no harder or more thrilling experience than being a mother. It is an unbelievable responsibility that women carry with unrivaled strength and grace. At the Springfield Wellness Center, we want to be there when it inevitably gets difficult.
Chiropractic care during pregnancy and after, both for mom and baby, is an incredible all-natural healthcare solution to help babies grow strong and moms stay strong. Call us or schedule a time to talk with one of our amazing doctors about how chiropractic can help make the pregnancy experience jubilant.