Osteopathy during pregnancy
The woman’s body is fantastic. It can create new life, miraculously adapt to a growing fruit in its belly and give birth after 9 months. In this article we discuss why osteopathic treatment is useful both curatively and preventively.
Why osteopathy during pregnancy?
Pregnancy is often one of the most beautiful phases in a woman’s life. Unfortunately, many women experience discomfort during pregnancy, such as headaches, back pain, pelvic instability, digestive problems, … Osteopathy can often help you with this. In addition, it can also help to prepare the body optimally for birth.
Osteopathy for prenatal complaints
During pregnancy, a woman’s posture needs to constantly adjust due to the changing centre of gravity of the body. The baby grows, the centre of gravity of the body shifts forward and the pelvis rotates slightly backwards to provide enough stability to the growing baby.
Therefore, the woman’s body needs to be flexible to go through this change. Bad posture, mechanical blockages, scars, trauma, tension, etc. can be a reason why this cannot happen smoothly.
Osteopathy as birth preparation
In addition, osteopathic treatment is useful to optimally prepare the body of the future mother for the birth. As osteopaths, we strive, among other things, for an optimal and elastic function of the weights in the pelvic area. The more optimal the function, the more flexible the birth canal, the greater the chance of a natural delivery.
Before a birth it is of great importance to relax the pelvic region and the diaphragm. Optimal mobility of the pelvis facilitates the passage of the baby through the birth canal. A flexible diaphragm improves the breathing of the expectant mother and thus enables more powerful and efficient pushing contractions.
Osteopathy supports rapid regeneration after birth
During a spontaneous birth, the load on the pelvis is very high. This strain, together with the hormonally loosened ligaments and a decrease in the abdominal and back muscles can be the reasons for pelvic blockage. This often leads to back pain and irritation of the sciatic nerve.
After a caesarean section, the healing and scarring process can often result in impaired tissue function. Scar tissue is contractile tissue that has a strong influence on the blood flow and mobility of the internal muscles.
This loss of movement leads to tension and changes in posture. During osteopathic treatment, blood flow to the tissue is stimulated and the internal fascial “crosslinks” in the body are released. This makes the scar tissue softer and more elastic. An osteopathic treatment brings the body back into balance and thus enables faster regeneration.
When to treat?
In principle, treatment can be given from the beginning to the end of pregnancy. The first weeks of pregnancy are the most vulnerable weeks and a time of very large hormonal changes. During this time, the entire pelvic girdle is usually only treated in consultation with the gynaecologist. Treatments on parts of the body such as the shoulders, neck and extremities (legs or arms) can still take place without any problems.
From the 12th week onwards, the pregnancy hormone HCG gradually decreases and a more stable period begins, which makes a whole-body treatment of the woman possible. Gentle stretches and mobilisations can reduce back pain, pelvic pain and groin pain. Digestive problems such as flatulence and belching are positively influenced by the relaxation of the diaphragm area. The stimulation of blood and lymph flow has a soothing effect on painful breasts, calf cramps and dizziness.
In osteopathy we look at the body as a whole in which everything is interconnected and physical, biochemical, emotional and energetic factors also constantly influence each other. This holistic way of thinking remains unchanged when treating a pregnant woman.
So we don’t treat the structure, but the whole woman, taking into account the little miracle in her belly! After all, a balanced mind in a balanced body not only ensures the calming of the pregnant woman, but also the good development of the foetus!
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