Pregnancy & Post-natal Care
A Holistic Approach
Osteopathy is an ideal therapy for helping women cope with pregnancy
because it recognises the important link between the structure of the body and the way it functions. Pregnancy alters a woman’s body from her head to the tip of her toes. Osteopathic care harmonises the changes occurring, alleviating pregnancy symptoms and helping women adapt to the physical changes occurring.
The aim of osteopathic treatment during pregnancy is to help each woman’s body be adaptable and dynamically balanced throughout pregnancy. This approach will have the effect of minimising pain and discomfort, and simultaneously optimising the structure and function of the body in preparation for labour.
The most common conditions that pregnant women seek relief for include:
- Back pain and stiffness
- Neck pain
- Pelvic and pubic pain
- Round ligament and groin pain
- Headaches and migraines.
Osteopathy can address a range of other pregnancy symptoms including the mechanical problems that may develop and contribute to reflux, shortness of breath, carpal tunnel syndrome and fluid retention.
The best time to commence treatment is different for each individual.
Some women will find treatment prior to conception beneficial. Pregnancy aches and pains are most likely to arise in areas of the body that have been previously strained or areas that already aren’t functioning at an optimum level. Addressing these areas prior to the mechanical changes of pregnancy occurring, gives the best chance of minimising pain and discomfort.
Other women might cope well with the first half of pregnancy and only seek treatment as their bodies change throughout the second and third trimesters, and as they experience an increase in aches and pains.
Osteopathy can also be beneficial post-natally. At this stage it is primarily used for restoring normal pelvic mechanics post birth, and relieving muscular aches and pains associated with breast feeding and lifting a new baby.
No matter when you start treatment, there is always something that osteopaths can do to relieve pain, increase mobility and improve overall function.
Osteopaths can also help you stay fit and active throughout pregnancy by:
- Providing advice on appropriate exercises and exercise levels before, during and after pregnancy.
- Prescribing specific exercise programs based on your individual needs.
- Treating any aches, pains or injuries that may arise throughout pregnancy.
- Explaining basic pelvic floor exercises for during and after pregnancy.
- Prescribing exercises for the rehabilitation of rectus diastasic (abdominal separation)
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