Thursday, May 10, 2012

Chiropractic and Pregnancy

Chiropractic and Pregnancy

Pregnant moms, let me share the following very good news with you:

  • Chiropractic care has been shown to significantly reduce labour time for women who had care throughout their pregnancy. In one study, Dr Joan Fallon found that first-time mums averaged a 24% shorter labour, while experienced mothers (those who had given birth before) had a 39% reduction in the average labour time in a substantial percentage of births.

  • In another hospital study that incorporated chiropractic adjustments during the patient’s pregnancy, the results indicated that there was a 50% decrease in the need for painkillers during delivery, attributable to pre-delivery adjustments.

  • A study conducted by Dr Irvin Henderson MD (a member of the American Medical Association Board of Trustees) demonstrated that “Women who received chiropractic adjustments in their third trimester were able to carry and deliver their child with much more comfort.”

Show me any woman who would not be excited about these possibilities! Adjustments help women successfully prepare for labour. In addition, a well functioning nervous system enables a mother to easily combat many of the hurdles of pregnancy. Often women learn to just accept pregnancy discomforts such as nausea, heartburn, constipation, pubic pain, etc, when in fact they don’t need to. A chiropractor will check your spine to assess if it is properly aligned and subluxation-free (free of joint and nerve dysfunction). Regular visits while you are pregnant will help to keep you in great shape in preparation for your birth. Chiropractic care is extremely important—before, during and after pregnancy. Here are some tips for Caring For Your Spine.

Tips for Caring for Your Spine During Pregnancy

Here are some top tips for caring for your spine:

  • Don’t try to sit straight up from a lying position using your abdominal muscles. Instead, bend your knees, turn onto your side and push yourself up with your arm.

  • Remember to unlock your knees when standing.

  • Refrain from wearing high-heels.

  • Avoid standing with your hands on your hips and pushing your tummy forward.

  • Let others lift heavy items for you.

  • Avoid twisting your spine on top of your pelvis; instead try moving your whole body with your feet first. For example, when getting out of the car, turn your whole body towards the open door as you place your feet on the ground.

  • If you have other young children PLEASE avoid carrying them whenever possible. Have them walk (it is good for you to slow down the haste anyway), and sit and cuddle them as much as you can. Many pregnant women injure their abdominal muscles, pelvic floor or their pelvis by carrying other children.

  • Avoid remaining in one position for too long. If you need to stand for an extended period, place one foot on a small box or an equivalent to reduce the load on your back. Swap legs.

  • Keep your pelvic floor strong.

  • Perform regular moderate exercise

  • Breathe deeply into your lower abdomen, especially when stressed.

  • Every day, gently stretch your body..

  • Once a week or as often as you can, schedule a massage.

  • Sleep with a pillow between your knees and place another pillow at your breast level to snuggle, so that you do not roll your upper body forward.

  • Have your spine regularly checked by a chiropractor.

Dr Jennifer Barham-Floreani

B.App.Clin.Sci, B.Chiropractic
Author of Well Adjusted Babies

-Fallon, J. DC. The Effect of Chiropractic Treatment on Pregnancy and Labour: A Comprehensive Study. Proceedings of the World Federation of Chiropractic, 1991:24-31. Fallon, J. DC. Chiropractic and Pregnancy; A Partnership of the Future. ICA Review Nov/Dec 1990. (pg. 39-42)

-Frietag, P. Expert testimony of Frietag, P. MD PhD, comparing the results of two neighbouring hospitals, US District Court, Northern Illinois, Eastern Division, No.76C 3777. May 1987.

-Henderson, I. MD. American Medical Association records released in 1987 during trial in U.S. District Court, Northern Illinois, Eastern Division, No. 76C 3777. May 1987.

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