As a pregnancy develops, stress is increasingly placed on the body, causing incredible discomfort for some women. A woman’s center of gravity immediately begins to shift forward during pregnancy. Although a woman’s posterior section of the pelvis has the capacity and depth enabling her to carry a baby, the displaced weight still increases stress on her joints. As the baby gets bigger, a woman’s weight continues to project forward, curving more her lower back and placing extra stress on the spinal disks.
Towards the end of the pregnancy, the sciatic nerve may be irritated when the baby’s head begins pressing down on a woman’s back, legs, and buttocks.
How Chiropractic Can Help Pregnancy
Before pregnancy, a visit to the chiropractor can detect any imbalances in the pelvis or elsewhere that may contribute to pregnancy discomfort. During pregnancy, chiropractic care can control symptoms of nausea, relieve back, neck or joint pain and even prevent a potential cesarean delivery. Research has also found that chiropractic adjustments can provide relief from low-back pain, muscle tensions, headaches and shoulder problems in pregnant women.
During birth, chiropractors can help assure optimum biomechanics in the hips and spine- reducing labor complications. Adjusting your body during pregnancy will avoid unneeded pressure on the abdomen, overall reduction of undue stress to the uterus and to the supporting ligaments. Establishing pelvic balance has been shown to allow the best positioning for the fetus, therefore easing the delivery process.
Even after childbirth, in the weeks following labor and delivery, the ligaments that loosened during pregnancy can begin to tighten up again with the help of chiropractic care.
The Webster Technique
The late Larry Webster, D.C., Founder of the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association (ICPA), developed a specific chiropractic analysis and adjustment which enables chiropractors to establish balance in the pregnant woman’s pelvis and reduce undue stress to her uterus and supporting ligaments. This balanced state in the pelvis has been clinically shown to allow for optimal fetal positioning. The technique is known as the Webster Technique. This technique is a safe means to restore proper pelvic balance and function for pregnant mothers. In expectant mothers presenting breech, there has been a high reported success rate of the baby turning to the normal vertex position. This technique has been successfully used in women whose babies present transverse and posterior as well. It has also successfully used with twins.