Back Pain After Labor and Delivery
Back pain after delivery is a common issue and it’s not surprising; your body has just been through almost a year of changes, culminating in a physically demanding delivery. The changes that allow your body to expand and accommodate a growing baby also place more demands on your back and joints. While you are pregnant, your ligaments naturally loosen up; these loose ligaments can cause instability and discomfort as you move around.
Your ligaments don’t tighten up overnight after your baby is born; it took the better part of a year to fully stretch out some of your muscles and it will take a while for everything to go back to normal, too. As your joints become less loose and your muscles return to their normal strength, your back pain will diminish too. How long this takes will depend on a variety of factors; avoiding placing stress on your already beleaguered joints will aid your recovery.
Watch Your Posture
The way you sit, stand and carry your baby can all impact the amount of back pain you feel. Using correct posture can help eliminate some discomfort and prevent further damage to your already painful back.
- Sitting: Choose a comfortable chair with a back support and add a pillow if needed. Keep both feet on the floor and sit up straight; a small stool can also be used if needed.
- Standing: Avoid locking your knees, and try to distribute your weight evenly; keep your chin tucked in and try to align your ears with your shoulders. Avoid slouching – it can lead to more pain and discomfort.
- Carrying your newborn: Keep your baby close to your torso and support him over one shoulder or make a cradle with your arms. Avoid hunching over and you’ll reduce the pressure on your spine.
Caring for Baby Body Mechanics
The lifting, leaning and bending you do while caring for your infant can exacerbate your existing back pain. Learning to do these tasks the right way can help reduce your discomfort or eliminate it entirely.
- Bathing:Most baby bathtubs will fit right into a sink; bathing baby while standing in the kitchen may be easier than hunching over the tub in the bathroom. If you do need to use the bathroom, bring in a seat so you can sit comfortably instead of leaning into tub while standing.
- Carrying the baby seat: Baby bucket style car seats make it easy to tote your infant from the house to the car without waking him, but the combined weight of baby and seat can get excessive. Squat down next to the seat to lift it up and use your legs, not your back to lift the seat. If you have to carry the seat, use both hands and carry the seat close to your body in the front.
- Lifting baby from the bassinet or crib:Elevate the mattress so you don’t have to lean over very far to pick up your new baby. To lift her up without damaging your back, hinge at the waist and lean forward, keeping your spine straight. Scoop up your baby and bring her to your chest, then straighten up.
- Changing diapers:A changing table that is positioned at the right height makes this task easy on your baby – and easy on your back as well. Keep everything you need handy as you make the needed changes and avoid twisting and reaching as you work.
Still Have Postpartum Back Pain Near Troy, Michigan?
Some postpartum back pain goes away on its own, particularly if you use the above techniques. If your pain lingers, a visit to the chiropractor could help. Massage and chiropractic care can all help ease your post pregnancy pain. If you’re experiencing back pain after a new arrival we can help you determine the best course of action and take steps to naturally eliminate your pain. Contact Advanced Health Chiropractic in Troy, Michigan for help and follow our blog for more pregnancy back pain relief tips and techniques.