Pregnancy back pain is characterized by a lumbar (lower back) pain ranging from dull to deep. Often, it is accompanied by an aching discomfort at the back of the thighs or on the sides of one or both buttocks. This is called posterior pelvic pain.
If you are pregnant and have been experiencing pregnancy back pain in the Jersey City or Hoboken areas, you may be wondering how it can be safely treated. At The Spine & Sports Health Center, we have board-certified chiropractors who provide pregnant women with specialized treatment options, at our offices in Jersey City and Hoboken.
Before delving into exactly how chiropractic care may help with pregnancy back pain, however, let’s look at several key facts surrounding this common pregnancy ailment.
3 Things to Know About Pregnancy Back Pain
- You’re not alone if you’re experiencing back pain during pregnancy.
Several pregnancy symptoms seem to affect nearly all expectant mothers: morning sickness, swollen feet, an overactive bladder, and back pain. In fact, approximately two-thirds of women will experience this form of pain during pregnancy.
- There are several key “culprits” that cause back pain when you’re pregnant.
Contrary to what you may believe, it’s not only because you’re carrying extra weight around that back pain arises when you’re pregnant.
Certainly that’s part of it, but largely the pain is caused by your center of gravity changing. With your uterus growing, your “center” is now extended out toward your toes, meaning your back has to do more work to keep you balanced, and it becomes strained.
Additionally, the abdominal muscles become weaker because they’re having to stretch to accommodate the baby. Finally, your joints and ligaments become looser as your body begins to produce more of the hormone relaxin, which loosens your pelvis and allows it to widen in preparation for birth.
- Medications are not the best way to treat back pain when you’re pregnant.
Most non-pregnant women use over-the-counter drugs like ibuprofen from time to time — for backaches, headaches, or other pains. When you’re pregnant, however, these drugs are off limits. That’s because they pose several risks to your baby’s health.
Ibuprofen may increase your chances of having a miscarriage, and there has also been some research linking heart defects, abdominal wall defects, and cleft palates to the mother taking ibuprofen when she’s pregnant.
What are Treatment Options that May Help Alleviate Pregnancy Back Pain?
Pregnant women are unfortunately very restricted in the treatment options that are safe for both mom and baby. Medications and injections are off-limits, which can be very limiting. Chiropractic care, on the other hand, is a non-medicinal, non-invasive alternative. It is an option that may be helpful in alleviating back pain for those pregnant women who are suffering.
How Does Chiropractic Treatment Help?
In addition to potentially improving the everyday feeling of your back and reducing overall pain and discomfort in the pelvic region, regular chiropractic adjustments during pregnancy may specifically improve the following aspects of your life:
It may help you get some sleep.
Pregnant women need to have adequate sleep during pregnancy, and in fact, you often need a few additional hours of sleep when you’re pregnant to keep yourself healthy and help your baby grow.
But if your back hurts when you lay down at night, even your comfy, body-length maternity pillow might not be enough to help. Having regular chiropractic adjustments, however, may help reduce pain in your back during the day and at night — helping you fall asleep easier and stay asleep longer.
Chiropractic treatment may improve headaches, as well.
Headaches, which ail many pregnant women, are often a deferred symptom of neck and back pain from pregnancy. The spinal manipulation in a chiropractic adjustment may especially help headaches due to tension and those that begin in the neck.
It may make labor easier.
Chiropractic care may help to keep your pelvis aligned during pregnancy so that it’s also aligned during labor for a smooth birth. Posterior and breech positions, which are often caused by a misaligned pelvis, may lead to C-section interventions and more difficult births.
Is It Safe to See a Chiropractor When Pregnant?
Yes. In nearly all cases, it is safe to use chiropractic for pregnancy. There are not any known contraindications to this type of care, and most chiropractors are specially trained to work with pregnant women.
Our Chiropractors at The Spine & Sports Health Center
If you are pregnant and have been experiencing back pain in the Hoboken or Jersey city areas, The Spine & Sports Health Center may be able to help. All of our board-certified chiropractors are trained to work with pregnant women and have years of experience. We recommend that you always consult with your OB-GYN first - ask them if chiropractic may be right for you!
To learn more about our treatment options for pregnant women or to make an appointment, fill out our contact form or give us a call at (201) 535-2474.