Back pain does not need to be endured during pregnancy. Most women continue to live with the pain, not realising that there are tools, exercises and treatments available to reduce or even eliminate the pain. As an osteopath I find back pain during pregnancy to be common; research shows that figures are as many as 50-70%. However I do not see it as a normal symptom of pregnancy, otherwise all pregnant women would experience it. If you have back pain it is treatable and can be relieved. Women and health care professionals should be taking a more active role in trying to educate and eliminate such discomfort.
So if you are pregnant be active and do something about it! Do inform your obstetrician, GP or midwife so they can refer you. Always monitor your symptoms during your pregnancy and labour, and ask for referral for treatment.
Your spine should change shape
Your body goes through dramatic changes during pregnancy and one of the major changes is of the shape of your spine. As your bump gets larger the lumbar curve increases. As the breasts get larger the curve in your mid spine also increases, changing your centre of gravity to move more anteriorly. Your back should change shape gradually during your pregnancy; most of the problems start if your joints and muscles are stiff and do not want to change and adapt to the new posture.
How to manage your back pain
Do not just endure your back pain. See an osteopath who specialises in pregnancy. Pain can usually be relieved within 4-6 osteopathic treatments. If symptoms cannot be relieved early enough, they can be at least be managed so that your pain does not worsen with your advancing weight.
What does an osteopath do?
- Make a diagnosis. It is important to know why and specifically what is wrong with your back and decide how to treat it with specific exercises or treatment for your individual problem.
- Help your body adapt to the new pregnancy posture with hands on work as well as exercise and posture advice.
- Prevent further pain as you get heavier in your pregnancy.
- Relieve pain which helps you sleep and increase your energy levels.
What can you do to help your back pain in pregnancy?
- Get a diagnosis.
- Get up from your desk every 20 minutes or so and walk around.
- Get someone to assess your ergonomics if you work in an office.
- Put a pillow between your legs and under your bump when lying in bed.
- Do exercises specifically for pregnancy and if you have a problem find out what exercises are required specifically for you.
- Sit well, don’t cross your legs.
Simone Ross is an osteopath with 15 years experience specialising in treating back pain in pregnant and post-natal women. She runs Kane and Ross Clinics in Harley Street and Kensington and receives referrals from many of London’s obstetricians, and midwives, she also has a contract with The Portland Hospital.
Kane & Ross Clinics
39 Harley Street, London, W1G 8QH
73 Courtfield Gardens, London, SW5 0NL
020 7436 9007 – See more at: https://www.mybaba.com/flat-head-syndrome/#sthash.k4JDWuwC.dpuf