Pregnancy Pains

Pain in pregnancy is common but shouldn’t be accepted as normal. Due to the influence of hormones relaxing your joints ready for labour you are more likely to suffer aches and strains. But the good news is that this increased mobility means you are able to get better quickly as well.

Pregnant women respond far quicker to treatment than those who aren’t pregnant.

Common Problems we can treat include:

  • Backache / Sciatica
  • Pubic Pain
  • Carpal Tunnel
  • Heartburn
  • Breathing Difficuly / Rib Pain
  • Swollen Ankles / Varicosities

The dramatic changes in posture and weight of the uterus during pregnancy can lead to aches and pains in your back and legs. This is caused by increased tension in the back muscles and irritation of the lumbar and sacro-iliac joints.

Also, any problems you had prior to your pregnancy may be highlighted. Using a variety of gentle techniques to ease supporting muscles and ligaments we can help relieve these problems.

pregnancy-1Groin and Pubic pain or “Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction” (SPD)

If one side of the pelvis moves more than the other when you walk or move your legs, this can lead to pain and inflammation around the pubic bone in the groin. By balancing out the two sides we can greatly reduce the irritation, allowing you to walk without pain, and avoid wearing cumbersome supports.

The swelling and fluid retention that is common during pregnancy can increase pressure on the nerves passing through the wrist.  This can cause pain and tingling in your hand especially at night.  Although splints and rest are useful sometimes this is not possible in the busy lifestyle of the expectant mother.

By improving movement in the joints of the wrist and enabling better drainage these symptoms can be minimised.
Heartburn and indigestion can occur as the uterus expands and hormone levels increase, the opening in the diaphragm that allows food to pass into your stomach relaxes, and acid reflux can occur causing uncomfortable burning pains in your chest. Releasing tension in your diaphragm and making your ribs and chest more mobile reduces these symptoms quickly.

As your baby grows in size it puts pressure on your diaphragm. At the same time your ribs and spine change shape to accommodate the growing baby. Both of these can cause difficulty breathing, pain and discomfort. By gently mobilising the ribs and stretching the diaphragm we can relieve pain and help you breathe more easily.

Varicose veins, Haemorrhoids, Constipation, Swollen ankles

All of these are caused by the effects of pregnancy hormones and the pressure from your growing uterus on the veins and organs in your pelvis. By manipulating joints and ligaments in the pelvis, easing pelvic congestion and improving circulation in the lower body, these can be reduced or avoided.

How Osteopathy can help you in the pre- and post-natel stages of your pregnancy:

  • Preparing you for the demands of labour
  • Helping you to recover after birth

Is osteopathy safe during pregnancy?

An important part of preparation for childbirth is to ensure the mother’s pelvis is structurally balanced to allow for delivery. Previous problems with the pelvic bones, coccyx or sacrum can leave increased tension in the muscles and ligaments. This can affect the ability of the pelvis to expand during delivery and allow the smooth and efficient passage of the baby.

pregnancy-2Prevention of tears and trauma is the aim of all midwives, obstetricians, and other birthing practitioners, and osteopathic treatment may help limit the eventual trauma onto the perineum and pelvic floor.

Osteopathic treatment is effective at releasing old strains within the pelvis, thus giving the best chance of an easy and uncomplicated labour. Sometimes, problems only start to show up after the birth, and back pain can start once you begin to lift and carry your baby.

Even breastfeeding can cause problems with the neck and shoulders which can be helped through treatment. Breast soreness and some cases of mastitis may also be eased by treatment to your neck, ribs, shoulders and surrounding muscles, which allows drainage within and from the breast.

Osteopaths can advise you on lifting, feeding postures, and re-strengthening exercises for your back, abdomen and pelvic floor muscles. Osteopaths undergo training in obstetrics and paediatrics.

We study the specific adaptations that occur during pregnancy and learn techniques that are safe yet effective.

Osteopathy is safe at all times during pregnancy.