For me, one of the best things about Osteopathy is its effectiveness in treating so many different conditions, some of which can be treated quite easily with a few postural and lifestyle adjustments. I really enjoy helping mums to be who are suffering with aches and pains as a result of pregnancy.
One common theme that I hear over and over is that back pain is part and parcel of being pregnant and there is nothing you can do about it. This is simply not true and there are lots of things you can do to help relieve this pain. Here are my suggestions.
- Try to avoid sitting or standing for an extended period of time. Alternate between the two at regular intervals to avoid undue stress on the joints.
- When standing, ensure you stand straight and tall, keep your shoulders back and relaxed, hold your chest high and don’t lock your kness. Also use a slightly wider stance for more comfort and support.
- When sitting, make sure that the chair has a supportive back or use a small pillow as a support and try to sit up as straight as possible.
- When doing housework, know your limits!! Avoid lifting heavy objects if possible, but if you do have to lift something, do it correctly. Bend your knees, keep your back straight and ensure all the weight is in the legs. Do not bend your waist!!!
- The same lifting techniques apply if you have a toddler. Always kneel or squat to pick up your child and if this becomes difficult, sit down and let your child climb up onto your lap.
- When driving, try a lumbar support for your seat. You’ll also find helpful information in this article http://bit.ly/2dHTPhb
- When at work, follow the sitting guidelines above and avoid crossing your legs.
- Ensure your computer and chair set up is aligned ergonomically (if you’re not sure how to do this, just email us and we’ll send you a workstation set up guide).
- Take regular breaks and take a walk at lunchtime.
- The best position is to sleep on your side, with your knees slightly bent. Try putting a pillow between your knees and another under your belly to make sleeping more comfortable. This little tip has worked really well for many of our patients.
- Ensure that you are using a firm mattress to sleep on. A soft mattress is poor at supporting your posture.
- When getting out of bed, roll on to one side and push yourself up to a sitting position and then slowly stand up.
So these are my top tips for maintaining a healthy back during pregnancy. Please remember that the symptoms associated with back pain during pregnancy should not be neglected. If unaddressed, these symptoms can very often affect the lifestyle and health of the mother post-natal. It is therefore vital that you understand the underlying cause of your back pain, including appropriate prevention and treatment options.
As always, if you have any questions about the above or the conditions we treat, please do not hesitate to get in touch. Pregnant women very often respond well to osteopathic treatment and it is safe to visit an osteopath during pregnancy.
We offer a FREE 15 minute consultation, either by phone or by appointment, where we can discuss any concerns or issues you may have and how we can help. Just call 01491 281 972 to book.
Thanks for reading,