Pregnancy related musculoskeletal pain

The increased weight and postural changes that occur during pregnancy may place increased strain on the vertebral column. Pain often centers in the low back and pelvis but may extend to the mid-back, neck, shoulders and arms. Discomfort in these areas may also be due to an increase in breast size and is often exacerbated by feeding postures and carrying the baby post pregnancy.

At the chemical level, a hormone called ‘relaxin’ is produced in the early stages of pregnancy. Relaxin causes softening of the ligaments and loosening of the joints of the pelvis, in preparation for birth. This effect on the ligaments is widespread throughout the body, making other joints more vulnerable to strain. Relaxin continues to be produced throughout breast feeding, up until 8 weeks following the cessation of breast feeding.

We can help to support the mother’s musculoskeletal system throughout this time by providing gentle soft tissue techniques and joint mobilization of the problematic areas.