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Healthy Bodies

Feb 26th, 2020

Healthy Bodies

Feb 26th, 2020 / Nicki Chick

As chiropractic, osteopathy and physiotherapy treatments grow in popularity, Suzie Skipper from Angels & Urchins finds out from the experts how they can support your body during pregnancy, as a new Mum and when taking care of your bundle of joy.

Spring 2020 Issue. By Georgie Adams

Which Treatment?

All three treatments come under the term ‘manual therapies’ and the way care is provided is very similar. They all aim to improve physical health and well-being and are non-invasive and drug-free. There are, however, some differences.

Pregnancy

A huge amount happens to a woman’s body in a short amount of time during pregnancy. Therefore, it is no surprise that this is perhaps one of the most important times to have a treatment. “Symptoms such as lower back or pelvic girdle pain are common in pregnancy, however there is no reason to put up with it as there is help out there,“ says Stephen Hughes, Director and Chiropractor at The Octagon Chiropractic Clinic.

Is it safe?

Having a treatment by a qualified practitioner is perfectly safe, even  during the first trimester. “Whoever you see will go through a thorough history and examination before beginning gentle and specific care,” explains Ami-Bree.

Physiotherapist Georgie Adams, who specialises in Women’s Health at Six Physio, says that pregnancy treatment usually takes place either
seated or lying down on your side with lots of pillows for support. “Joint pain from the relaxin hormone can start as early as 12-14 weeks and because we are trained in that area, we know what is safe to do and what is not,” says Georgie.

Ready for labour

Seeing a physio before birth can help with getting ready for labour, says Georgie. “We can assist with helping women find good positions for labour and show them how to do perineal massage, to help the perineum stretch more easily during labour which might reduce the chances of a tear or an episiotomy,” says Georgie.

Postnatal check

Unfortunately, checking whether your tummy has any gapping i.e. rectus abdominis diastasis, and whether your pelvic floor has recovered from pregnancy and birth is often overlooked. “I was too tired to really think of anything else other than my baby and whether she was gaining enough weight at my 6-week check with the GP. So I forgot to ask for help with checking my tummy muscles,” says Sarah, mum of two.

It is such a good idea to have a postnatal check. “We will check the tummy and pelvic muscles for new mums as well as their hips and backs and start them on a gentle strengthening programme,” says Georgie. Your pelvic floor can be weak even if you have had a C-section. “Sometimes going back to the gym and doing the wrong exercise can widen the diastasis rectus; as a new mum it’s so important to be shown exactly which exercises you should be doing,” explains Georgie.

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