How we can help mother and baby
Osteopathy can be beneficial for the following:
- Easing some of the discomforts that come with pregnancy
- Preparing for labour
- Help mother and baby recover after birth
Discomforts of pregnancy
The body undergoes considerable changes to support a pregnancy and that can trigger several aches and pains along the way. To accommodate the increasing size and weight of the uterus, the body allows hormonal changes to soften and stretch ligaments in preparation for labour.
Any pre-existing back problems, which have often gone unnoticed prior to pregnancy, make it difficult for the body to adapt to those changes. As a result pre-existing back problems surface during pregnancy. Even with no pre-existing back problems postural difficulties can occur anytime during pregnancy as the uterus becomes heavier. The severity of the problem tends to increase as the pregnancy progresses.
Symptoms such as neck, shoulder or low back ache or pain, headaches arising from neck tension, general aching, Symphysis Pubic Dysfunction and undue fatigue may arise.
Symphysis Pubic Dysfunction (SPD)
The Pubic Symphysis is the joint in the front of your pelvis where your two pelvic bones meet. As the ligaments relax around this joint and the muscles attaching around this joint are put under increased pressure due to pre-existing problems and the developing pregnancy; it can cause pain in the front of the pelvis radiating down into the legs and low back. It often causes difficulty in certain movement such as lifting, walking, getting in and out of the car and many more.
Osteopathic treatment aims to restore balance in this area by releasing any restrictions in the lower spine, sacrum and pelvis. These restrictions often impede the pelvic mechanics creating increased strain on the pubis symphysis. The treatment consists of articulations of the joints and soft tissue manipulation.
Osteopathic treatment in pregnancy
Osteopathic treatment aims to help the body adjust to these postural changes during pregnancy by attempting to release tension.
Treatment is directed towards easing out the tension in the muscles and joints that are overworking to compensate for the postural changes.
We adapt our technique to suit your bodies needs, as you are pregnant we tend to use gentler techniques.
During treatment we also check the mother’s pelvis to ensure it is balanced and hope this will prepare it for labour.
Once the baby has arrived
After giving birth, the mother’s body has to cope both with the changes it made during pregnancy and the effects of delivery. During labour the pelvis will often be pulled out of balance by the passage of the baby. On top of that new mums often feel quite traumatised by the labour experience.
Further on as the baby is growing mums tend to focus all their attention on the baby and they often neglect themselves. The effects of feeding in poor postures, carrying the car seat around and rocking the baby to sleep all cause enormous strain on the back. So it is no surprise that the new mum will experience pains such as low back pain, pelvic pains, sciatica, neck and shoulder pains, general fatigue, or headaches rising from the neck.
During the treatment we aim to help the mum return to normal, physically and emotionally, after giving birth by releasing muscle and joint strains in the body. We use several techniques to achieve this including muscle and soft tissue techniques, joint manipulations and articulations, cranial techniques and visceral techniques.
As the baby undergoes the delivery and goes from a safe environment to being introduces to a cold big world, this can be quite traumatic for the baby.
In any in uterus position and delivery, the baby may have been squashed, pulled or twisted in different ways and this might leave the baby feeling uncomfortable. Unresolved birth stresses may contribute to many different problems as the child grows.
We recommend that the baby should be checked after birth. Common difficulties that might arise showing the baby is uncomfortable are problems with sleeping, crying, feeding and digestive difficulties. Sometimes a baby with a preference for breastfeeding on one side may have difficulty moving their head freely to both sides. This might be remarked also if the baby prefers looking to one side.
Osteopathic treatment for babies and children is more specialized and uses more gentle techniques. We tend to use cranial osteopathy where we feel the gentle movement of the cranial bones and attempt to resolve any restrictions. Often babies find it very pleasant and fall asleep during the treatment.
If you would like to know more about treatment for mother and baby please don’t hesitate to contact us.