3 Common Questions About Chiropractic Care & Pregnancy
How can chiropractic care help during pregnancy?
Did you know that up to 90% of pregnant women may experience pregnancy-related low back pain (LBP), pelvic girdle pain (PGP) or a combination of both during pregnancy and postpartum. This usually starts between the 18th to 28th week of pregnancy. This can be due to maternal weight gain, biomechanical changes and/or changes in hormonal levels such as relaxin that helps produce ligament laxity. LBP or PGP often resolves after birth, however 18% continue to suffer from low back pain 2-3 years following the birth. Just because back pain is common in pregnancy, that does not mean it’s normal! Chiropractic care is a great addition to your healthcare team to helping make your pregnancy more enjoyable and comfortable.
Chiropractic care for pregnancy related LBP or PGP complaints typically includes:
- Manual therapy such as spinal manipulative therapy (SMT), mobilizations, soft tissue
techniques and kinesiotaping.
- Education such as appropriate exercise, nutrition and self-management techniques.
Common conditions treated during pregnancy:
- Low back pain
- Pelvic girdle pain
- Round ligament pain
- Neck pain
- Rib dysfunction
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
Is Chiropractic care safe for pregnant women?
YES! Chiropractors are effectively trained to handle the needs of pregnancy. Extra training in
the Webster Technique is a benefit but not necessary. The Webster Technique is used to re-
align the pelvis, which can lead to an easier delivery and less LBP or PGP.
Is exercise safe during pregnancy?
YES! All pregnant women who have no complications should be physically active during
pregnancy. Physical activity has been proposed as a preventative or therapeutic measure to
reduce pregnancy complications and optimize maternal-fetal health.
- At least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per week
- Physical activity should be accumulated over a minimum of 3 days/week; however,
being active every day is encouraged
- Incorporate a variety of aerobic and resistance training to achieve greater benefits.
- Adding yoga and/or gentle stretching may also be beneficial
- Pelvic floor muscle training may be performed on a daily basis to reduce the risk or
Pregnant women who experience light-headedness, nausea or feel unwell when they
exercise flat on their back should modify their exercise to avoid that position.
There are some contraindications to exercise during pregnancy so book in with your
Chiropractor to have a specialized treatment and exercise plan that is safe for you.
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Related Low Back, Pelvic Girdle Pain, or Combination Pain: A Systematic Review. Journal of
manipulative and physiological therapeutics. 2020 Sep 6.
2. Jeanne Ohm DC, Joel Alcantara DC. The Webster Technique: Definition, Application and
Implications. Journal of Pediatric, Maternal and Family Health. 2012 May 10.
3. Mottola MF, Davenport MH, Ruchat SM, Davies GA, Poitras VJ, Gray CE, Garcia AJ, Barrowman
N, Adamo KB, Duggan M, Barakat R. 2019 Canadian guideline for physical activity throughout
pregnancy. British Journal of Sports Medicine. 2018 Nov 1;52(21):1339-46.