The Impact of Pregnancy on Posture: What Every Pregnant Woman Should Know
If you’ve got a bun in the oven – let us congratulate you! The anticipation of a new baby joining the family is exciting and special. However, in the whirlwind of focusing on the health of your baby, many moms-to-be sometimes aren’t fully prepared for the changes that pregnancy brings to their bodies or the impact of their posture. Between bouts of nausea and different aches and pains, it can be an intense time, and many feel resigned to an uncomfortable pregnant existence.
Being pregnant doesn’t necessarily mean nine months of aches and pains. Though it can be a lot to wrap your head around, taking care of you is important not only for your baby but for your own mental and physical health. Below we’re outlining a couple of the most common changes that your body will experience during pregnancy and how to stay on top of them for a healthier, happier pregnancy.
Increased Back Curve And Proper Pregnancy Posture
This one may seem obvious, but especially in your second and third trimesters, as you begin showing, your center of gravity goes through a major shift. With more weight in the front of your body, comes more stress on your lower back as it tries to compensate for the new positioning that you’re experiencing. It’s easy to let your lower backrest in more of a curve to accommodate the growing baby. Many expecting moms also find themselves leaning back a bit more to keep their balance – also increasing the curve of their lower back. However, this all also wreaks havoc on your posture and can cause some serious lower back pain if you’re not mindful of it.
Part of preventing back pain during this stage is being aware of your posture. Remember to stand tall with your shoulders back. For comfort, try standing with a wider stance; this helps many pregnant women maintain good posture without putting undue stress on their bodies. And, when it’s time for bed, sleep on your side, preferably with a pillow tucked between your knees to keep body positioning optimal. You’ll sleep better, and wake up feeling more rested as well. Score!
While pregnancy means shopping for new clothes, proper shoes should be on your list as well. What should you be looking for? Low-heeled shoes with good arch support offer comfort and stability. Leave the heels at home for now, and avoid completely flat shoes as well.
Lastly, a word of caution – consistent lower back pain that’s coupled with vaginal bleeding or fever can be signs of urinary tract infection or preterm labor. If you are experiencing these symptoms along with lower back pain, seek medical help immediately.
How Hormonal Changes Can Affect Posture
The protruding pregnancy bump makes it relatively easy to understand the lower back discomfort that is so common during the second and third trimesters. However, the hormonal changes that your body goes through actually play a part in your posture and overall comfort as well.
Ever heard of the hormone relaxin? Well, it starts to surge during pregnancy in preparation for birth. Essentially, this hormone helps relax the ligaments in your pelvis so that they can move more fluidly to accommodate childbirth. However, while you’re still carrying your baby, this hormone can also mean that the ligaments in your body move around a little more than usual, which can cause some issues in the interim if you’re not careful.
For instance, during pregnancy, some women begin to experience a sharp pain in their lower back by the tailbone, also known as SI joint pain. This injury can happen during pregnancy because of the loss of stability in the hips due to the relaxin hormone. Many women find relief by intermittently wearing a belly band, which helps provide support to your back and abdomen, while also promoting good posture.
How Chiropractic Can Help Throughout Your Pregnancy
Another way to take care of your body throughout your pregnancy is by working inconsistent chiropractic care. Adjustments of the spine, neck, and extremities can help to realign the body and provide relief that can be so desperately needed when your body is in the intense process of gestation. As your body changes to accommodate your growing baby, chiropractic care can help not only address the pain points you may be experiencing from shifting posture but also helps to give the rest of your body the attention that it also needs through this process.
Gentle chiropractic adjustments help to decrease inflammation, relieve pressure, reduce nerve irritability, and ultimately allow your entire body to relax. By working consistent chiropractic care into your routine, you can help your body maintain better posture, thereby increasing the overall quality of your pregnancy experience. That’s a huge win-win for your health and the health of your baby! Additionally, chiropractic care can also help in your postpartum journey as your body transitions back.
Stay on top of the pangs of pregnancy pains. Schedule your appointment online or call (256) 333-9429.
This article is for informational purposes only, and is not a substitute for in-person advice or care from a medical professional.