Physical Therapy Blog

Pregnancy- feel the excitement, not the pain!

Pregnancy! There are two words that may immediately come to mind. They are excitement and pain. According to the American Pregnancy Association, more than half (50% -70%) of women experience back pain during pregnancy. The pain generally starts in the second half of the pregnancy, but I have seen women with a new onset of back pain in the first month.

This can be attributed to several reasons, including:

• Increase in body weight
• Shift in the center of gravity to a more forward position
• Increased hormonal production that makes the ligaments looser. These ligaments provide stability to the spinal and pelvic joints, so if they are loose, they may not do their job more strain on the joints and muscles
• Postural changes because of the above reasons and to compensate for the changes
And let’s not overlook sleep; many women find it harder to sleep during pregnancy and sleep deprivation contributes to poorer healing.

When you search for someone to help with your pregnancy pains, that person should be well versed and experienced in working with pregnant women. The knowledge of the pregnancy journey and the ability to create creative solutions is essential. There are so many options to help you eliminate your pain. Here at Radiant Physical Therapy, you often walk out of your first appointment with less pain. Pain is common during pregnancy, but not inevitable. Don’t worry; the pain does not necessarily get worse as you get bigger. If we address it now, we usually can eliminate it or greatly diminish it AND prepare you for the delivery itself.

Try this: You can create an instant cradle for your baby and for your back by finding the deep ab muscles, called the transversusabdominus (TA, for short). Place your hands on the under surface of your belly, between the two pelvic bones that stick out on each side. Inhale, expand into your hands; now exhale, and scoop the belly in and up as if you are bringing your baby up to your heart. The muscles under the hands should become a little harder as they move in and up and across the pelvic bones as you exhale.-as if you are smiling across your lower abdomen.

You can also look in a mirror to see if your navel is moving in and up as you use those muscles.
Big bonus points if you can do a kegel at the same time or right before the abs, and the exhale part of the breath gives it more power and efficiency.Stay tuned in to learn more about those kegels…