Back pain, neck pain and headaches are common during pregnancy. As the body changes, muscles and ligaments get stretched, hormones kick in and the spine is put under strain. Dr Shaun from Waverley Chiropractic says that Chiropractic care through this stage may be helpful for the expectant mum. But there is more to chiropractic care through pregnancy than just pain relief.
A new study from New Zealand shows that chiropractic care can help pregnant women with relaxation of the pelvic floor muscles. Good functioning and relaxed pelvic floor muscles are important during the birthing process, so this study is great news!
A Randomised Control Trial from the New Zealand College of Chiropractic, a first study in its field, provides evidence that chiropractic manipulation to correct spinal dysfunction in asymptomatic, pregnant women results in relaxation of the pelvic floor muscles. This is of great potential significance to expectant mothers given the role of the muscles in the birth process.
This from the Australian Spinal Research Foundation highlighting the importance of this study:
• Chiropractic care can have an impact on pelvic floor muscles.
• Pregnant women who received chiropractic care had a greater ability to relax their pelvic floor muscles at rest.
• This relaxation of the pelvic floor muscles may mean that chiropractic care could be of benefit to pregnant women, is it may help them have a natural vaginal delivery.
Why this study matters. Your pelvic floor muscles are integral to the birth process, and to the prevention of incontinence and other issues, which makes this an exciting piece of knowledge for chiropractors and for women receiving chiropractic care.
Chiropractic care may actually enhance your chances of having a natural, complication free childbirth. This is better for both mother and baby.
“If we can have uncomplicated, natural vaginal delivery without drugs and intervention, the baby is better off and the woman is better off. This study we have just done suggests chiropractic care can help women by relaxing their pelvic floor muscles.” Neuroscientist and Chiropractic Researcher Heidi Haavik Pregnancy, childbirth and aging can put these muscles through their paces. Across the world, millions of women suffer from incontinence and related conditions, contributing to a massive emotional, physical, social and financial costs and stress.
1. Pelvic floor functional changes with spinal manipulation in pregnant and non-pregnant women: A pilot study. JMPT 2016.