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Prenatal Chiropractic Care

Prenatal Chiropractic Care And The Webster Technique

Chiropractic care in general deals with musculoskeletal problems and during pregnancy many women have alignment problems due to the uterus being off-center. In some cases, the uterus pulls out in front and is not well-balanced by the back. A prenatal chiropractor can offer many women relief from problems such as backache, leg pain, pelvic pain, and many other problems associated with pregnancy. Hormonal changes in a pregnant women’s body soften the joints in preparation for the birth and combined with the extra weight and strain of carrying a child, an expectant mother can experience some serious body stress..

Why Should I Have Chiropractic Care During Pregnancy?

Several physiological and endocrinological changes take place during pregnancy in order to create the ideal environment for the developing fetus. To improve comfort and prepare for a safe and easy delivery, it is essential to have a normal physiological function of the pelvis and sacrum. Due to an increase in hormones, postural adaptations normally associated with pregnancy, and weight gain, pregnant women have a greater risk of sacral subluxation and neuro-biochemical imbalances than the normal population.

Changes During Pregnancy that can Result in a Misaligned Spine and Joints

- A protruded abdomen that causes the spine to curve
- Production of the hormone Relaxin that softens ligaments and joints in preparation for the birth
- Postural adaptations
- Pelvic changes

Chiropractic care involves the manual manipulation and adjustment of the spine, muscles, and joints to correct any misalignments. Chiropractors use gentler manipulations with less force on pregnant women and make use of special tools like a table with a drop-away section in the middle to leave room for the belly, as well as special cushions for comfort. Because of the ligament laxity caused by the relaxin hormones, it becomes very easy to make adjustments on pregnant women. Among the most common ailments treated are headaches, upper and lower back pain, hip and lower back (sacroiliac) pain which often radiates down into the leg, rib misplacement, and pubic bone pain among others.

Most significantly, chiropractic care supports the nervous system which controls the systems of the entire body, including the reproductive system. When the spinal column is properly aligned, the entire body functions more efficiently.

The Benefits of Chiropractic Care for Pregnancy

In order to optimize health benefits for both mother and the baby, regular prenatal chiropractic check-ups should be done. Potential benefits of keeping the spine in proper alignment include:

- Relief of neck, back, and joint pain
- Reduced swelling of extremities
- Maintaining a healthy pregnancy
- Reducing labor and delivery time
- Controlling symptoms such as nausea
- Promoting an easier delivery and possibly avoiding a Cesarean Section

Is Chiropractic Safe for Mothers and Babies?

All chiropractors are trained to treat pregnant women and it is routine for many to see it as an investment in the wellness and fertility of women who are pregnant, trying to conceive, or postpartum. They are also trained in providing pregnant women with instruction on safe exercises and stretches to perform at home to enhance the benefits of the alignments.

The Webster Technique

The Webster Technique was developed by Larry Webster, D.C. the founder of the ICPA - International Chiropractic Association. It is a specific chiropractic analysis with adjustments designed to balance the pelvis of a pregnant woman in order to reduce stress on the uterus and supporting ligaments. It has been clinically proven that a uterus that is in a balanced state allows for optimal positioning of the fetus. This unique technique is known as “The Webster Technique”.

Benefits of the Webster Technique

A misaligned pelvis may reduce the available amount of space the baby needs for development. Called ‘intrauterine constraint’, this condition may prevent the baby from being in the best position for delivery and jeopardize the chances of a natural, non-invasive delivery. A posterior position or breech may result in interventions such as a c-section or external cephalic version.

A report in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics stated an 82% success rate with babies turning vertex when the Webster Technique was used by chiropractors. The ICPA recommends prenatal chiropractic care for pregnant women throughout their confinement in order to establish and maintain the pelvic balance that will ensure that the baby has enough room for development until full term.

Optimal positioning of the baby at the time of delivery will eliminate a potentially difficult labor and external intervention and result in an easier and safer delivery for both mother and baby. As more women are turning to prenatal chiropractic care during pregnancy, health care providers are looking for more trained chiropractors to refer the patients to. At Chiro For Moms, Dr Jesse specializes in prenatal chiropractic services for pregnant women through all stages of their pregnancy. Contact Chiro For Moms to schedule a consultation.