Research shows that approximately 50% of all pregnant women will have back pain during pregnancy, back-pain-during-pregnancyand 50% – 75% during labour. Why is this, and how can chiropractic help? Keep reading to find out!

Why Do Some Women Experience Back Pain During Pregnancy?

There are many possible reasons for back pain during pregnancy. The most common causes are:

Weight gain. During pregnancy, women typically gain between 25 and 35 pounds. This rapid weight gain can put pressure on the spine casing low back pain.
Posture changes. Pregnancy shifts your center of gravity, causing expectant mothers to adjust their posture. This may result in back pain or strain.
Hormone changes. During pregnancy, the body produces a hormone called relaxin. Relaxin allows the ligaments in the pelvic area to relax and joints to become looser in preparation for the birth process. In some cases, it can also cause the ligaments that support the spine to loosen, leading to instability and pain.
Muscle separation. As the uterus expands, two parallel sheets of muscles (the rectal abdominis muscles), which run from the rib cage to the pubic bone, may separate along the center seam. This can aggravate back pain.
Stress. Physical stress isn’t the only that can cause back pain. Emotional stress can lead to muscle tension and back spasms. Try to stay zen.

How Can Chiropractic Help?

There are many potential benefits of chiropractic care during pregnancy. Some of which include:

• Overall healthier pregnancy
• Reduced symptoms of nausea
• Shorter labour
• Relieving pain that may occur in the back, neck and/or joints
• Reduced risk of cesarean delivery

Chiropractic care can help improve the balance and alignment in your spine and pelvis. This is helpful for numerous reasons during pregnancy. For one, it helps ensure that the baby is in a healthy birthing position, reducing the risk of breech.  Beyond that, when your nervous system is stimulated it enables proper functioning of the reproductive organs, which better supports the baby’s needs during pregnancy.

Ultimately, chiropractors can assist pregnant women in maintaining or achieving a healthy spine and nervous system positively impacting the baby. In addition, they can provide women with exercises, stretches and techniques that can help foster a beautiful, healthy pregnancy and delivery.

Happy and healthy pregnancy to all the moms-to-be reading this. Feel free to leave your comments and back pain strategies below!

Berg G., Hammer M., Moller-Nielsen J., Linden U., Thorblad J. Low back pain in pregnancy. Obstet Gynecol. 1988;71:71–75. [PubMed]
Shaw G. When to adjust: chiropractic and pregnancy. J Am Chiropr Assoc. 2003;40(11):8–16.
J.M. Fallon. Textbook on chiropractic & pregnancy. Arlington, VA: International Chiropractic Association; 1994: 52, 109.