21 Oct Osteopathic Pregnancy Management
Finding out about a pregnancy can be one of the best days in a woman’s life, but once that baby begins to grow and doctor visits begin to be a routine part of the woman’s life, some of that overall joy can start to diminish. It is not that the mother is not happy about the baby, but the simple fact that pregnancy takes a considerable toll on the woman’s body and not all areas of pregnancy are completely joyful.
Osteopathic pregnancy management, however, can bring back the joy you may have been missing and provide you with a more manageable and joyful pregnancy experience.
Treatments Used in Osteopathy for Pregnant Women
Growth of a baby is something of a miracle. It is amazing to watch that little bundle of joy grow within the body, but as that baby gets larger and larger, certain pains can become more apparent. An osteopath utilizes certain treatments and techniques to help the pregnant woman manage pain and simply make the whole experience more comfortable. Here are some of the treatments an osteopath can employ…
Soft Tissue Massage
A pregnant woman will rarely complain about minor aches and pains, but when those pains become more apparent, the woman often turns to any means necessary for relief. Over the counter and prescription medications can provide relief for certain aches and pains, but they also carry with them potential risk to the unborn child. Women today refuse to place their child’s life at risk in the name of comfort and therefore natural solutions such as osteopathy are becoming more common.
An osteopath will often perform soft tissue massages to help alleviate minor aches and pains. Stress on the muscles as the baby grows can bring on soft tissue and muscle aches and pains. Certain sleep positions and posture issues during pregnancy can exacerbate these issues. With the help of an osteopath, key pressure points in soft tissue are effectively massaged gently to alleviate stress and strain. Regular visits to the osteopath can alleviate much of the aches and pains naturally associated with pregnancy.
Soft tissue massage has its place during an osteopathy session, but if you think you will be simply going in for a massage, you are mistaken. Osteopathy is a form of holistic medication that accounts for the entire body. That includes stiff joints that can make movement during pregnancy a challenge.
The osteopath will target specific joints that are stiff and move them around manually to stretch the muscles around the joints to strengthen them. Regular joint articulation performed by an osteopath provides significant pain relief and overall comfort for the pregnant woman.
Muscle Energy Techniques
While pregnant, a woman is told to remain as active as possible. Unfortunately, not all women follow that advice. Even women that try to remain active during pregnancy can find themselves moving sluggishly or becoming tired from too much activity. It is natural to have increased lethargy during pregnancy, but it can have a negative effect on your body. Osteopaths regularly use muscle energy technique to help alleviate the sluggish or tired feeling felt by pregnant women.
During osteopathy sessions, muscle energy techniques are performed by placing the woman in specific positions and moving specific muscles in their body to improve functionality and overall movement. The osteopath ensures that the woman is comfortably positioned for these movements. Women who are regularly subjected to muscle energy techniques performed by an osteopath have better range of motion and feel far less joint and muscle aches throughout their pregnancy.
Symptoms You May Require Help from an Osteopath
It is often difficult to know when to see a specialist, especially while pregnant. People will often tell a pregnant woman that a certain pain is natural and just a part of the process, but why be in pain if you do not have to. An osteopath can alleviate pain if you are experiencing any of the following…
Lower Back Pain
Pressure on the body can be intense as the baby grows to full gestation. Minor aches and pains from simple movements can be an issue, but by far the most common ailment suffered by pregnant women according to osteopaths is lower back pain. Pain in the lower back is experienced due to the positioning and overall growth of the baby. Most often, the pain becomes more intense during the last trimester as the baby experiences the fastest growth leaving the mother’s body very little time to adjust to the added weight.
If you have never experienced heartburn in your life, you will likely have some form of heartburn sometime during your pregnancy. An osteopath can help with breathing exercises and specific movement that can reduce or even eliminate the evidence of heartburn without resorting to over the counter or prescription relief.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Carpal tunnel syndrome is not an uncommon factor in pregnancy. Increased fluid within the woman’s body can sometimes cause carpal tunnel to occur. Treatment options often include compression gloves for the wrists, but these can be uncomfortable and create other circulation issues. Osteopathy provides a natural, and highly effective solution.
Gentle massage performed by an osteopath can often relieve carpal tunnel syndrome in pregnant women by allowing the fluid to move away from the affected area naturally. Often fluid retention and carpal tunnel syndrome can be related to the back, shoulders, and neck. Targeting these areas can alleviate carpal tunnel syndrome in some cases.
What Studies About Osteopathy Say
Although osteopathy during pregnancy is not completely new, scientific studies that promote the techniques of an osteopath are a bit behind the times. However, studies have shown that regular visits to a qualified osteopath during pregnancy can significantly help alleviate pain throughout pregnancy. Specifically, studies show improvement in pain symptoms in the third trimester, through childbirth, and post-partum. Essentially, osteopathy alleviates stress and strain throughout pregnancy providing a less stressful childbirth and promotes healing after the baby is born.
If you are pregnant and experiencing pain at any stage, contact your local osteopath and see what they can do for you. Natural, holistic osteopathy can help make your pregnancy easier and more enjoyable for you while maintaining the safety of your unborn child.
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