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Jacksonville, NC 28540
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Pregnancy Related Pain? Physical Therapy could be the answer.

Pregnancy can be one of the most exciting times in a woman’s life.  The changes that the body undergoes during this time are simply amazing.  However, with these changes there are usually some aches and pains.  Physical Therapy might be the solution to many of the common issues that an expecting mother might face.  Here are some of the common issues you may encounter.

Back Pain

Low back pain is common during pregnancy, especially during the second and third trimesters. Structural changes in your pelvis and spine from increased hormones can also predispose the postpartum woman to low back pain for months or years after delivery. With a good exercise program, you can learn to stabilize your pelvis and low back joints through proper recruitment of your muscles. This can eliminate or minimize pain as you adjust to life after pregnancy.

Postural Changes

During pregnancy you will experience many musculoskeletal changes. The uterus goes from being a pelvic organ to an abdominal organ. This change of position places increased stress on your lumbar spine and sacrum, altering your center of gravity. Increased abdominal weight from your growing baby can also add strain to your neck, back, hips, legs, and feet.

Pelvic Floor Muscle Dysfunction

The pelvic floor muscles line the inside of the pelvis. Weight gain, hormonal changes, and vaginal delivery can cause your muscles to stretch up to 33% of their normal length. Common symptoms may include: urinary incontinence, pelvic pain, and pelvic organ prolapse.

Instability of the Sacroiliac Joint and Pelvis

A natural increase in hormones like relaxin, estrogen, and progesterone cause a softening of connective tissues and can create instability at one or more joints. The bones in your pelvis separate during pregnancy causing potential stress to the pelvic bones. If these tissues relax too much, it can cause a shift in joint alignment and contribute to pain in the pelvic bones, hips, and sacrum.

Diastasis Recti

Pregnancy can cause a separation of the abdominal muscles due to muscle lengthening. This diagnosis is often felt as an indentation between the central abdominal muscles.

Women searching for ways to cope with this reality may be surprised to know that all of the above issues can be directly addressed with a proper physical therapy program. Physical therapy is a medically based profession specializing in pain relief. Physical therapists (PTs) work with individuals to develop a treatment plan to decrease pain by identifying and addressing its causes. 

We often prescribe a combination of manual “hands on” therapy, exercise, and use different devices to help address the pain.  Additionally, exercise increases physical endurance and muscle strength, especially in the hips, back and abdomen. Improving these areas can prepare the body for the physically demanding event of delivering a baby. Finally, therapeutic exercise during pregnancy can assist the recovery after the delivery.

PT’s can begin treating your pain on the first visit, so you walk out the door feeling better than when you walked in. Additionally, since physical therapy is a medically based profession, the services are covered by most medical insurance plans with limited out of pocket cost. 

So, if you are dealing with the pains of pregnancy and need some relief, look no further than the specialists at Synergy Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine.  We will help you enjoy one of the most exciting times of your life.

Kira Boyd, MSPT, ATC
Clinic Director

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