So You’re Pregnant. Now What?
When pregnant with her first child, a woman can easily get overwhelmed. The fact that she is growing a life inside her body is a wonderful, exciting, and at times frankly terrifying idea. Friends and relatives constantly offer advice – warranted, welcomed, or not – and Dr. Google only adds to the stress of the unknown. Visits to her practitioner typically consist of question and answer sessions as well as physical examination, but when it comes to day-to-day taking care of herself and her little one, who has her back? Quite literally, a chiropractor does.
Why go to the Chiropractor during Pregnancy?
It is estimated from various reports that between 50-70% of pregnant women experience back pain during pregnancy. A multitude of factors can influence whether or not a pregnant woman will experience back pain, but pregnancy itself can cause an increase in pressure across the low back strictly from new weight dispersed across the abdomen. While weight gain is gradual, it is still significant, and draws the center of gravity of a woman forward.
Various changes occur throughout the body during pregnancy, and many of these changes occur in the spine. The thoracic spine (mid back) rounds more as the lumbar spine (low back) extends more. The pelvic floor is stressed as weight upon it increases, and towards the end of pregnancy, the pelvis itself opens more to help the baby exit more easily. Add 20-40 pounds to the mix, and it’s no wonder many women experience pain!
What Should a Pregnant Woman Do?
Remaining active while pregnant is one thing she can do to help decrease pain by increasing her strength, flexibility, and balance in her ever-changing body as well as boosting her mood and increasing blood flow to her baby! But with all of these changes, staying active can be tough. Aches and pains in the low back, pain across the lower abdomen from the round ligaments, and swelling in the feet can prevent women from heading to the gym or outside for a run. But regular visits to a chiropractor that specializes in pregnancy can help her move better and therefore feel better as her body is experiencing a more balanced state.
What Can a Chiropractor Do for a Pregnant Woman?
A chiropractor can increase and improve movement in joints that are stiff or insufficient, identify areas that could be problematic in the future, and help the pregnant woman experience balance in her body. Pregnancy specific physiotherapy as well as nutritional advice, kinesio tape, and myofascial release (massage) can help a pregnant woman not just survive the 40 week marathon, but actually enjoy it!
BIRTHFIT is a program intended to help women remain (or become) safely active during pregnancy and throughout the postpartum period. BIRTHFIT combines the four pillars of fitness, nutrition, chiropractic care, and mindset. Not only is the program about fitness, but also about personal empowerment and healing. Dr. Mumma is the Regional Director for BIRTHFIT NC in Raleigh. Offering individual BIRTHFIT consultations, BIRTHFIT Basics Workshops throughout the year, and both the Prenatal and Postpartum Series, Dr. Mumma helps pregnant and postpartum families in all facets of the motherhood transition.
The BIRTHFIT Prenatal Series is a comprehensive childbirth education class that helps prepare couples for pregnancy, birth, and the immediate postpartum period. This occurs in a 4-week course for moms and their partners that meets weekly. In addition to helping women during the prenatal period, BIRTHFIT is the leader in postpartum rehabilitation and recovery through the Postpartum Series, which is a 4-week course that helps women heal and recover from birth and return to exercise postpartum in a safe manner.
At Triangle Chiropractic and Rehabilitation Center in Raleigh, NC, Dr. Mumma has great experience as a Webster Certified chiropractor that specializes in pregnancy care; her goal is to give mother and child a safe and healthy pregnancy by providing quality chiropractic care in addition to various manual therapies and education. For more information about our services, contact us at our Raleigh, NC, office.