The body’s ability to adapt to pregnancy physiologically and structurally is quite remarkable. The whole body has to accommodate the increasing size of the uterus and the increased weight and changes to a woman’s centre of gravity.
As such, being pregnant, giving birth and post-natal care puts enormous demands on the body. In fact, it is common for women to maintain their pregnancy posture long after delivery, which can result in back problems and a weakened core.
The body’s core takes a massive hit when pregnant as the pelvic floor, back and stomach have to adjust to carrying the extra weight. The abdominal muscles can even separate (also known as ‘diastasis recti’) which often occurs due to the core not functioning optimally, leading to misalignment, instability and weakness.
Therefore, it’s vital to put effort into exercising in order to strengthen the core and prevent the post-natal posture remaining for potentially years down the line.
Also, with the massive changes to the body, the pelvic floor muscles become lax and can weaken. It is easy to overload them during activities like lifting, coughing, running and jumping. All of which increase the pressure in the abdomen, demanding the pelvic floor to support what’s above it. So exercising the pelvic floor is a must to improve stability and reduce the risk of developing pelvic conditions such as urinary incontinence.
The psoas muscle also plays a huge part in the treatment plan of most post-natal women. These muscles are two huge muscle groups that run either side of the spine, connecting the vertebra the lower back to the pelvis and leg bone.
These muscles play a huge part in controlling the lower back and pelvis during pregnancy, as they help to keep the spine balanced and support the weight of the baby. If one side gets tight, the other side will have to lengthen, causing a tilt of the spine and pelvis. The postural changes that occur during pregnancy can cause these muscles to stop working well, contributing to lower back, hip pain and a twisting of the pelvis.
Your osteopath can help balance these muscles and the pelvis with relative ease at this stage. We can also advise on the correct exercises which will either strengthen or stretch the right muscles in order to help improve flexibility and strength, and protect you from aches and pains.
According to a study conducted by German researchers, the back pain experienced by new mothers is significantly decreased among 70% of women who underwent osteopathic manipulative therapy.
So what are you waiting for?
To book an appointment with Not Just Backs, or to find out more, please contact us on 01722 512 043.