by Dr. Jason Lindekugel, D.C.
Copyright © 2005 Dr. Jason Lindekugel. All rights reserved.
This FAQ last updated: February 2006
Note: This special guest column is being written by Dr. Jason Lindekugel, a chiropractor experienced in working with pregnant women and trained in the Webster Technique.
Recently, a woman called my office
distressed about pain in her front pelvic area that was so intense she could
hardly get any sleep or walk without discomfort.
She was in her 42nd week
of pregnancy and was told by her
midwife to get to my office as soon as she could.
I told her to come on down and we would add her to the end of the day.
I could hear the relief in her voice when I told her we could help her.
When she arrived, I could see that she was a little hesitant and had many questions about safety of chiropractic during pregnancy. After addressing her concerns and explaining the techniques we would use to help her, you could see her stress fall away and in its place, an eagerness to begin. In 15 minutes she was pain free. The next day she gave birth to a healthy new baby girl. No pubic bone pain, and no complications.
Does Chiropractic Care Do
Chiropractic should be utilized in all
stages of pregnancy. It is
inexpensive, drug free, effective and the safest procedure that can be performed
for an expectant mother. My reason
for writing this article is to explain the methods used by chiropractors and the
safety of these procedures so that more women will not have to needlessly suffer
during what should be a wonderful part of their lives.
Chiropractic manipulation seeks to balance the joints of the body in order to normalize nerve function. This latter part is often overlooked when explaining chiropractic. In restoring joint function, chiropractors are relieving nerve irritation which in turn relaxes muscles and the ligaments of the pelvis and uterus. So, proper nerve function is the goal, not just “cracking” joints.
When the joints are happy, the patient can expect decreased pain in the area treated. Also, when the nerves are happy, life returns to the area, creating a sense of well being and improved health. It is not a normal state of the body to have joints malpositioned. In fact, in my experience, it is a major cause of breech presentation and pain for mom. This is why I recommend women have chiropractic examinations during pregnancy.
and Safety in Pregnancy
It is difficult to discuss exact numbers
when it comes to safety of chiropractic and the pregnant patient. This is due more to the lack of adverse reactions than to
lack of use. Pregnant women are
receiving chiropractic care every day, yet there are no reports of adverse
reactions in the literature. This
is also why chiropractor’s malpractice insurance is the lowest of any
physicians', because it is extremely safe.
Since there is plenty of literature on the
safety of chiropractic manipulation in general, some things can be generalized from these
populations to the population of the pregnant patient.
We can then add precautions that should be considered for the pregnant
Studies show chiropractic manipulation to be
many times safer than taking Advil and other over-the-counter medications.
Precautions for the pregnant patient include the need for special
technique to allow for baby and mother comfort.
This includes the use of a pregnancy pillow specially designed for the
expectant mother and side posture adjusting.
Due to the special hormone profile of the pregnant patient that causes a
decreased tone in the ligaments of her body, less force is often needed for
manipulations. Taking a detailed
health history will reveal any other precautions that should be observed.
Many women feel that the weight they gain during pregnancy is the cause of their pain. This is simply not true. The stigma is even worse for many plus-sized females. There is no difference in the procedures used for plus-sized women, and the results are the same; decreased pain and better quality of life. If you are having any pain during your pregnancy, see your physician AND your chiropractor.
Links to Online Articles About Chiropractic Care in Pregnancy
http://parenting.ivillage.com/pregnancy/pfitness/0,,40lj,00.html - information (including some research citations) about how chiropractic care can help improve pregnancy and birth
http://www.amerchiro.org/media/tips/pregnancy.shtml - general advice from the American Chiropractic Association on avoiding/treating back pain in pregnancy
http://www.dcdoctor.com/pages/rightpages_wellnesscenter/pregnancy/chirocare.html - summary of care in pregnancy; 3 study citations at end of article
http://www.pregnancy-info.net/chiropractic_pregnancy.html - general info
http://www.icpa4kids.org/research/chiropractic/pregnancy.htm - ICPA website with info and some studies about back pain in pregnancy and chiro care for it
http://www.icpa4kids.com/pediatric_chiropractic_articles_chiropractic_care_in_pregnancy.htm- Article discussing intrauterine constraint by Dr. Jeanne Ohm, ICPA
http://www.socalbirth.org/shelly/chiro.htm - how pregnancy strains the back, chiro info and exercises to help the back
http://www.planetc1.com/chiropractic-articles/pregnancy-chiropractic.html - chiro's article on benefits of chiro in pregnancy and for newborns
http://www.storknet.com/cubbies/childbirth/exsj3.htm - article by chiro about the Webster In-Utero Constraint Technique
http://www.storknet.com/cubbies/pregnancy/exsj1.htm - article by above chiro on safety of chiro in pregnancy and its use
http://www.icpa4kids.com/webster_technique.htm - "Webster Technique Defined"
http://www.chiropracticresearch.org/NEWS_chiropractic_technique_helps_tur.htm - summary of small survey study showing efficacy of Webster Technique
http://www.chiro.org/pediatrics/ABSTRACTS/The_Webster_Technique.shtml - abstract of this small survey study of the efficacy of the Webster Technique
http://www.drbagnell.com/Moms-toBe.html - about the Bagnell Technique (similar to Webster Technique) for removing in-utero constraint and helping baby's position
If you would like to discuss your questions or concerns with Dr. Jason Lindekugel, DC, he can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Copyright © 2005 Dr. Jason Lindekugel. All rights reserved. No portion of this work may be reproduced or sold, either by itself or as part of a larger work, without the express written permission of the author; this restriction covers all publication media, electrical, chemical, mechanical or other such as may arise over time.
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