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During pregnancy, a woman's center of gravity shifts forward to the front of her pelvis. This additional weight in front, causes stress to the joints of the pelvis and low back. As the baby grows in size, the added weight causes the curvature of her lower back to increase, placing extra stress on the fragile facet joints on the back side of the spine. Any pre-existing problems in a woman's spine tend to be exacerbated as the spine and pelvis become overtaxed, often leading to pain and difficulty performing normal daily activities.
Studies have found that about half of all expectant mothers develop low-back pain at some point during their pregnancies. This is especially true during the third trimester when the baby's body gains the most weight. Gentle non-invasive spinal care throughout pregnancy can relieve and even prevent the pain and discomfort frequently experienced in pregnancy, and creates an environment for an easier, safer delivery. It is one safe and effective way to help the spine and pelvis cope with the rapid increase in physical stress by restoring a state of balance. In fact, most women have found that spinal care helped them avoid the use of pain medications during their pregnancy. Our wellness experts should be your partners for a healthy pregnancy. They can provide adjustments, as well as offer nutritional, ergonomic and exercise advice to help address your special needs.
Be sure to get adjusted regularly. Spinal care is important to help maintain a healthy skeletal structure and nervous system function throughout a pregnancy and childbirth.
Do some gentle exercise each day. Walking, swimming, or stationary cycling are relatively safe cardiovascular exercises for pregnant women. Avoid any activities that involve jerking or bouncing movements. Stop exercise immediately if you notice any unusual symptom, such as nausea, dizziness or weakness.
Get custom made arch supports. Your feet become more susceptible to injury during pregnancy, partially due to a rapidly increasing body weight, but also because the ligaments that support the feet become more lax.
When picking up children, bend from the knees, not the waist. Your low back is much more prone to injury during pregnancy.
When sleeping, lay on your side with a pillow between your knees to take pressure off your lower back. Full-length "body pillows" or "pregnancy wedges" are very popular and can be helpful.
Eat several small meals or snacks every few hours, rather than three large meals per day. This will help alleviate nausea, stabilise blood sugar and allow your body to extract the maximum amount of nutrients from the foods that you eat.
Take a prenatal vitamin with at least 400 micrograms of folic acid every day; 800 micrograms is even better. Folic acid has been shown to dramatically reduce the risk of neural tube defects in a developing fetus. Be sure to check with your doctor before taking any vitamin or herbal supplement to make sure it's safe for you and the baby.
At the Atlas Wellness Centre in Bedford we have many experts that specialise in natural interventions for a variety of conditions. Our team is made up of two former doctors of chiropractic who have gone on to specialise in advanced techniques to rehabilitate spinal abnormalities/injuries, nerve damage, and offer first class education in nutrition and exercise science all of which can help ease the changes you go through during pregnancy. We also have one chiropractor, one sports therapist and three massage therapists on the team, all of whom work as a team to reverse the root cause of discomfort and pain during pregnancy. Contact our clinic today!
Outcome of pregnancy-related lumbopelvic pain treated according to a diagnosis-based decision rule: a prospective observational cohort study. Murphy DR, Hurwitz EL, McGovern EE. J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2009 Oct;32(8):616-24.
Chiropractic treatment of pregnancy-related low back pain: a systematic review of the evidence. Stuber KJ, Smith DL. J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2008 Jul-Aug;31(6):447-54.
The safety of chiropractic during pregnancy: A pilot e-mail survey of chiropractors' opinions. Kent Stuber. Clinical Chiropractic (2007) 10, 24-35.
Pregnancy and chiropractic: a narrative review of the literature. Borggren CL. J Chiropr Med. 2007 Jun;6(2):70-4.
Intractable migraine headaches during pregnancy under chiropractic care. Alcantara J, Cossette M. Complement Ther Clin Pract. 2009 Nov;15(4):192-7. Epub 2009 May 2.
The Chiropractic Care of a Gravid Patient with a History of Multiple Caesarean Births & Sacral Subluxation. Joel Alcantara, BSc, DC1 and Ingrid Hamel, DC, FICPA. J. Vertebral Subluxation Res. March 11, 2008.
Chiropractic treatment of a pregnant patient with lumbar radiculopathy. Kruse RA, Gudavalli S, Cambron J. J Chiropr Med. 2007 Dec;6(4):153-8.
A manual therapy and exercise approach to meralgia paresthetica in pregnancy: a case report. Skaggs CD, Winchester BA, Vianin M, Prather H. J Chiropr Med. 2006 Autumn;5(3):92-6.
Chiropractic spinal manipulation for low back pain of pregnancy: a retrospective case series. Lisi AJ. J Midwifery Womens Health. 2006 Jan-Feb;51(1):e7-10.
Conservative management of groin pain during pregnancy: a descriptive case study. Ducar D, Skaggs CD. J Chiropr Med. 2005 Winter;4(4):195-9.
We serve people from Bedford, Cambridge, Luton, Milton Keynes, Northampton, also Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Cambridgeshire, and Northamptonshire.
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" ... it's just amazing!"
Malcolm & Pat Pete
Atlas Wellness Centre (Atlas): Can you tell me your names, please?
Malcolm: Yes, Malcolm James Pete.
Pat: Pat Pete.
Atlas: And what made you want to come and see us in the first place.
Malcolm: Well, I’ve been suffering with severe pain in lower back and legs for two, three years really. I had several hip operations which supposedly were designed to cure the problem. But they had absolutely no effect and I would say in desperation, I saw your advertisement in the local paper. It sounded very good. So I thought, “Let’s give this a try.”
Atlas: And how would you say that having the health problems affected your life before you came in?
Malcolm: It stopped me doing most things that I enjoy doing. I couldn’t walk. I couldn’t go for walks. I couldn’t garden. Found it extremely difficult to do any jobs around the house and was virtually confined to a wheelchair.
Atlas: And how would you say things have changed since you started having the care here?
Malcolm: Since I’ve had the care, I’ve lost 95 percent of all the pain that I was suffering with. I rarely use the wheelchair now unless in fact I’m – got a lot of walking to do and I can rely on a walking frame and now I can get about comfortably with a walking frame. My only problem now is that it has been so long since I’ve walked that I’ve got to build up my stamina and balance before I can really try to walk without any support at all.
Atlas: And Pat, would you say you noticed changes with Malcolm?
Pat: Definitely. He’s not taking any painkillers now. He was on quite a lot of painkillers. Within about three weeks to a month, he had dispensed with all the painkillers. It’s so good for both of us. He’s much more independent. I don’t have to push him around in a wheelchair, so it has made a lot of difference to my life too. Yeah, it’s just amazing!
Atlas: Excellent. What would you say to someone who’s maybe a bit worried, a bit – about coming here for the first time?
Malcolm: I would tell them to come along without any concerns at all. I found the people – all of the people I’ve come in contact with to be very helpful. They explain what’s going to happen and there’s absolutely nothing to worry about. But the benefits can be immense.