Back pain is a common complaint among pregnant women, affecting a significant number of expectant mothers. Studies have reported varying prevalence rates, ranging from 50% to 80% of pregnant women experiencing back pain during pregnancy (Wu et al., 2004; Mogren & Pohjanen, 2005). The prevalence of back pain tends to increase as pregnancy progresses, with higher rates reported in the second and third trimesters.
Factors such as hormonal changes, weight gain, postural alterations, and the shifting centre of gravity contribute to the development of back pain in pregnancy. Proper management and self-care strategies can help alleviate discomfort and improve the well-being of pregnant women.
What is back pain in pregnancy?
Back pain in pregnancy refers to the discomfort or pain experienced in the back region by pregnant women. It is a common symptom that can occur due to various factors.
Hormonal changes, weight gain, postural alterations, and the shifting centre of gravity during pregnancy contribute to the development of back pain.
The growing uterus and the associated changes in the body’s alignment and posture can strain the back muscles, ligaments, and joints, leading to pain or discomfort.
Back pain in pregnancy can vary in intensity and location, ranging from mild to severe and affecting the lower back or extending to the upper back or buttocks.
What are the causes of back Pain in pregnancy?
Back pain during pregnancy can have multiple causes. Some common factors include hormonal changes, weight gain, postural changes, and the shift in the centre of gravity.
Hormonal changes such as increased levels of relaxin hormone, can lead to the relaxation and loosening of ligaments, causing pelvic and lower back instability.
Weight gain during pregnancy puts additional stress on the spine and supporting structures.
Postural changes can lead to altered alignment and muscle imbalances as the body adjusts to accommodate the growing uterus.
These factors combined can contribute to the development of back pain during pregnancy.
How can I help myself with back pain during pregnancy?To help alleviate back pain during pregnancy, you can try the following self-care strategies:
- Practice good posture: Maintain proper posture while sitting, standing, and walking to reduce strain on your back.
- Exercise and stretch: Engage in pregnancy-safe exercises, such as prenatal yoga or gentle stretching, to strengthen your core muscles and improve flexibility.
- Use proper body mechanics: Lift objects with your legs, avoid heavy lifting, and avoid twisting motions that strain your back.
- Apply heat or cold packs: Use warm or cold compresses on the affected areas to reduce pain and inflammation.
- Seek prenatal care: Consult with your healthcare provider for guidance on suitable pain relief techniques or possible referrals to a physical therapist.
How can acupuncture, osteopathy, and physiotherapy help my back pain in pregnancy?
Our ‘go to’ treatment method for back pain in pregnancy is acupuncture and has been for the past 40 years. To my surprise and delight, our clinical experience is now validated by a large-scale meta-analysis of all previous research in this area as on reported in the prestigious British Medical Journal: “Acupuncture significantly improved pain, functional status, and quality of life in women with [lower back/pelvic pain] during the pregnancy. Additionally, acupuncture had no observable severe adverse influences on the newborns,” they write.
The article goes on to say, “Acupuncture is emerging as a potential therapy for various different types of pain, because it doesn’t involve the need for drugs and is considered safe, say the researchers”.
Book your session of acupuncture for pregnancy and back pain in Sutton Coldfield Birmingham and Walsall today with our online booking system or call us.
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Frequently Asked Questions
What happens during my initial consultation?
Our priority upon your arrival is to ensure that you feel welcome, comfortable, and well-informed about your appointment. Typically, your initial consultation will last between 45 minutes to an hour. One of our experienced osteopaths will meet you and begin by attentively listening to you. We will inquire about your general health, any current pain you may be experiencing, your medical history, medications you may be taking, and review any medical examination results.
After this initial discussion, we may conduct specific tests to make a diagnosis. You may be asked to perform some gentle movements to allow us to evaluate your posture and mobility.
Using this important information, we will then create a personalized treatment plan tailored specifically to your needs.
What will happen AFTER an initial consultation?
During your second visit to our clinic, we will provide a detailed explanation of our findings from your history and examination. By the end of this session, you will be able to answer several crucial questions, including:
- What is causing my symptoms?
- What are the available treatment options?
- How long is the expected recovery time?
- How much treatment will be necessary based on your personalized treatment plan?
- How much will your treatment cost?
- What can I do to help myself?
- What changes do I need to make to get better, faster?
We take the time to explain and clarify the causes of your symptoms and what can be done to alleviate them. At this stage, we will have created a personalized treatment plan tailored to your specific needs.
What can I expect after my first treatment?
The response to treatment varies from person to person, as everyone is unique. The initial treatment is a crucial step in gauging the patient’s reaction to treatment and determining the best course of action to meet their individual needs.
Immediate relief may be experienced by some patients after the first session, while others may require multiple sessions to see significant progress. It’s vital for patients to realize that treatment is not a one-time fix and that it may take a number of sessions to achieve long-term results, particularly for chronic issues or long-standing musculoskeletal imbalances.
Is treatment painful?
The treatments themselves are not painful, but there might be some discomfort after the spinal manipulation as your body adjusts to the treatment and improved posture. This can result in stiffness in certain regions, which is a natural occurrence, and we recommend using an ice pack on the area for 10 minutes after your session and staying hydrated.
What causes the cracking sound during the treatment?
The cracking or popping sound heard during an osteopathic treatment is caused by the release of nitrogen gas from the joints. This is a normal and common occurrence and may not always happen depending on the technique used. The sound itself is neither significant or important to your progress.
What is the cost of the initial consultation?
The initial consultation is priced at £65, which comprises a thorough spinal evaluation including muscle and nerve testing, orthopaedic examination, as well as posture and movement analysis.
What is the cost of the each treatment?
Each treatment is £45 if you pay as you go. However, we do have discount options available depending on what works best for you.
What days and times are you open?
Monday – Friday 8am – 8pm,
Saturday – 8am – 2pm
Sunday – closed
How long will it take for me to feel better?
The length of time it will take to start to feel better varies a good deal between patients. This difference is based on several factors, including the how long you’ve had the problem and how severe it’s become, your lifestyle and demands of work and family as well as your individual capacity to respond to treatment.
Generally, patients with acute conditions (recent onset) may experience significant improvement within a few sessions, while those with chronic conditions (your symptoms have been present for more than 12 weeks) may require more treatment sessions to attain long-lasting outcomes.
The secrets to getting well are to always turn up for your treatment, follow the guidance of your practitioner and get involved in your own recovery. Don’t delegate your health to your practitioner. It is always a partnership!
What happens if I miss an appointment?
We recognize that we all have busy lives beyond the Backcare and Acupuncture Clinics, but please let us know as soon as possible if you are unable to keep your appointment, and we will make every effort to reschedule it for you. We will make every effort to accommodate your particular schedule