Low back pain during pregnancy is a problem that affects many women. As many as 75% of pregnant women experience back pain. It is the result of a variety of changes, including weight gain, postural and hormone changes as well as stress.
A structured exercises program can decrease low back pain during pregnancy. More specifically, engaging in 1 hour of exercise a week improves back pain compared to prenatal care without exercise and decreased back pain related sick leave by 30%.
If you have access to a pool, therapeutic aquatic exercise may benefit patients with chronic or pregnancy-related low back pain. 4 weeks of participating in an aquatic exercise program improves disability, pain and overall function.
When comparing land based exercise and aquatic exercise, both show improvement in pain and overall function. If you have access to a pool, aquatic exercise is a good option, however performing an exercise program at home or in a gym is just as beneficial.
Chiropractic manipulation reduces progressive back-specific dysfunction during the third trimester of pregnancy. This is the time when the baby is growing the most and the most biomechanical changes are occurring. A recent study evaluated women after 7 treatments and were found to have a significant decrease in pain and dysfunction.
What if we incorporate several interventions that have been shown to work? Multimodal intervention including chiropractic manual therapy, stabilization exercises, and education reduces pregnancy-related low back pain. Women who undergo chiropractic care and participate in a home-based exercise program beginning at 24-28 weeks decreased their overall pain by more than half. Additionally, they reported less difficulty sleeping when compared to women who did not attend a chiropractor.
There are other methods and modalities that are frequently used to reduce. Other modalities that are beneficial for pregnancy related low back pain include:
-Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS): TENS should be used under the guidance of a professional. When used properly, it has been shown to cause a significant reduction in pain and disability
-Kinesiotaping: A small study has shown that kinseotaping improves pregnancy related low back pain compared to acetaminophen. Women experienced decreased pain and increased overall function. That being said, kinesiotaping may be a good adjunct to other low back pain interventions.
For more information regarding low back pain during pregnancy, visit you North York Chiropractor at arc-health.com or call us at 647-504-4213.