There are many hormonal, fluid and mechanical changes that occur during pregnancy. This is to allow for an expanding uterus and the subsequent growth and wellbeing of your baby. All your bodily systems undergo changes during pregnancy, including the musculoskeletal system. The hormonal changes cause the ligaments and muscles in your pelvis, lower back and hip to soften so they are more fluid and more easily stretched. It is common for women to get lower back and pelvic pain in pregnancy as a consequence of this, particularly in the 2nd and 3rd trimesters. It is also common for women to get neck, shoulder and upper back pain due to postural changes and growing breast tissue.
Osteopathy in pregnancy will help to support your rapidly changing structure and help to relieve tensions to the spine, pelvis, shoulders and hip girdles, allowing the body to adapt more comfortably to these changes. Osteopathic treatment for pregnancy care is very gentle and need not be used just when you have discomfort. It can help to prevent a variety of aches and pains and can reduce the risk of developing more serious biomechanical problems,such as sciatic pain, pubis symphysis dysfunction or sacroiliac pain. Antenatal pelvic floor exercises are encouraged too, to help prevent postpartum stress incontinence and a reduction in stage 2 ‘pushing’, which is a stress to the pelvic floor.Osteopathic treatment can help promote optimal foetal positioning and can help you to progress to a more comfortable labour, reducing the risk of medical intervention and a faster recovery.