Osteopathy and Pregnancy
It has been well documented how the musculoskeletal system adapts and changes during pregnancy and osteopathy can help with these transitions making you more comfortable. As your baby grows different stresses are placed on different parts of your body, both from physical stresses and from hormonal changes. For example, as your bump grows you will accommodate the anterior weight (your belly!) by leaning backwards, which can place more strain on your lower back and pelvis. It is also common to get neck and upper back aches & pains as your centre of gravity adjusts and breathing mechanics change.
Lower Back Pain
The maintenance of good mechanical function is essential for health. Any problems that occur in the body can disturb the circulatory system or nerves to any part of the body, and in turn affect any part of health.
Back pain is a very common complaint during pregnancy but not every pregnant woman gets back pain! The pain is usually due to the weight of your growing belly and as the baby grows bigger, mum tries to keep her centre of gravity which creates a ‘sway back’ posture that increases the stress on the lower back, which could cause it to become problematic. Osteopathy provides lower back pain relief, often the body responds quickly during pregnancy this is due to the circulating hormones that are active during this period of time.
This issue is usually caused because of the growing baby taking up more and more room, your organs and in this case especially your stomach have less space so everything is being pushed up, the acid in your stomach is forced to go through the oesophageal sphincter (at the top end of the stomach) and into your wind pipe- your oesophagus. Osteopathic treatment relaxes the muscles in your back; focusing around the thorax, help stretch diaphragm and giving you relief from heartburn.
Pelvic Girdle Pain / Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction
The pelvis is made up of three joints; 2 sacroiliac joints and 1 pubic symphysis and these three joints create a ring shape. The sacroiliac joints are at the back, at the bottom of your spine and the pubic symphysis is at the front of the ring. Symptoms of PGP & SPD can be because of a combination of different reasons including unstable pelvic joints because of hormonal changes, postural changes and the growing baby.
Expectant mothers can be affected from the first trimester or symptoms can start later in the pregnancy & symptoms can include pain & aching in the lower back, buttocks, hips and lower abdomen. Through appropriate treatment and manipulation osteopathy can reduce pain during pregnancy.