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Hey Everyone! Dr. Taylor here!!
I want to talk about all things Prenatal Care because this is where my heart and passion lies: Empowering, educating and helping women through their pregnancy 5th pregnancy or thier first, whether they are planning a c-section, VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean) or a natural physiological birth – I LOVE to be because I know I can help make a difference for these moms and for these families!
So I wanted to touch on how to build a birth team and the three main reasons why mommas seek out prenatal chiropractic care!
Building a birth team:
We would love to add a prenatal chiropractor to every birth team because we know the impact on that mom and her pregnancy, and also on that baby later on and the healing process afterwards for both!
We know that prenatal chiropractic is still a newer concept to a lot of moms however this speciality has been used since the birth of chiropractic, for 120 years and there are specific chiropractors like myself and Dr. Bryce here at SHC who are especially specialized in prenatal chiropractic and have done many hours of training and are expert in this matter.
So when we’re talking about building a birth team, we want to make sure that these are people who you feel empowered by, people who you feel comfortable with and people who will advocate for you throughout this process.
So obviously when we’re talking about birth teams, we hear about the OB or the Midwife, because you want an educated, trained specialist in that process for you whether your having a hospital birth, a birth center, or that home birth.
Doulas are a great addition to a birth team! They are amazing support people who help you to navigate the different stages of birth, advocate for your birth plan, and can even help provide some natural pain relieving options and help you to be more comfortable! A few doulas even work through the postpartum period, helping mom and baby bond and support mom through the first few weeks of parenthood. We highly suggest a doula for every birth!
Prenatal Massage therapist can be unbelievably helpful in making sure your comfortable throughout pregnancy, especially through the third trimester when things tend to get a little bit more uncomfortable as you grow a bigger belly and your body starts changing a little more. They are specially trained and certified in prenatal massage therapy, focusing on relaxing certain muscles, allowing for that belly to grow, and avoiding or targeting certain areas specific to prenatal care.
Lastly, my personal favorite, prenatal chiropractors utilize Webster Technique, which specifically analyses and corrects the pelvis and sacrum, which has direct attachments to the uterus through specific ligaments and muscles. We are also Advanced Trained in Perinatal care, meaning we have extra training on top of webster technique certification so that we can provide the best care for everyone during the prenatal and postpartum periods. So we truly believe that a prenatal chiropractor should be included to everyones birth plan.
Three main reasons why do people seek out a prenatal chiropractor:
1. They want a more comfortable pregnancy. During pregnancy, a lot of things change, your body changes, your hormones change, and can very commonly cause discomfort. The most common challengers in pregnant women during the prenatal period are low back pain, sciatica, headaches, pubic symphysis or groin pain, round ligament pain, and pelvic alignment issues. The low back is followed up by a triangular shaped bone that sits in between your hips called the sacrum. The sacrum is by far the most important bone when it comes to the low back biomechanics of a pregnant mom because the sacrum and the pelvis, which surrounds the sacrum, are attached to the uterus directly from a handful of different ligaments.The attachment most commonly referenced during pregnancy is the round ligament which attaches the uterus to the pubic bone on the pelvis. During pregnancy, it’s very common to experience pain in that round ligament on one side. When the sacrum, the lowest part of the low back rotates and is misaligned – which is very common in pregnancy due to the hormones important in pregnancy all have an indirect impact in loosening ligaments – it distorts the biomechanics of the pelvis, pulling on the round ligament on one side, changing the shape of the uterus, much like a hot air balloon, if one line to the balloon is tighter, the balloon will lean to one side. So through Webster Technique, we’re looking to address the bones in the low back, the ligaments like the round ligament, and the muscles, specifically the psoas muscle which runs from the upper thigh to the front part of the spine, wrapping around the growing uterus on its way.
With Webster technique, we check all three of these components on every momma to ensure that we’re improving biomechanics in the pelvis and reducing the distortion of the uterus, which can help baby to have enough room to get into the proper position. This is one of the reasons why Webster Technique has gotten a name for itself for “flipping babies” or “turning breech babies” but in reality, it is just restoring the proper biomechanics of the pelvis, allowing the uterus to be the proper shape so that baby can go head down when it needs to at approximately 26-32 weeks.So obviously this one bone, the sacrum, can impact not just low back pain, but it can affect the function of the pelvis and shape of the uterus as well. It is one very important bone!
2. They want a better birth. Prenatal chiropractic care can result in shorter, safer, and easier birth and labors. There was this amazing research study that showed that even moms who were going through their first birth, if they went through regular prenatal chiropractic care, their birth resulted in 5-6 hours of shorter labor times and shorter birth times compared to first time moms who did not seek out prenatal chiropractic care. And additionally, when moms experience those longer birth, we end up getting harder labors and increase risk of things like Dystocia, failure to progress.Two common reasons why dystocia occurs is:
– Because of baby positioning – see reason #1 why people seek out a prenatal chiropractor. When the uterus and pelvis is distorted, it can lead to poor presentation of baby, like brow presentation or posterior presentation when the baby can commonly get stuck and lead to more interventions like vacuum extraction or cesarean, and can impact baby’s health later on, like latch issues and trauma to the neck caused by that positioning.
– Because of the neurology – the fight or flight reflex!! The birth process can be scary and especially if a mom has had a traumatic birth prior, the fight or flight reflex can inhibit the natural biochemical processes that are necessary for contractions to be coordinated. There are two modes to your nervous system: Fight/Flight or rest/digest. They work together like seesaw, the rest/digest mode acts as a brake pedal to the fight/flight response. We want all moms in labor to be in that rest/digest mode so that those biochemical processes can occur properly. Back to sacrum (the most important bone in pregnancy), there’s a window to the rest/digest mode located right underneath the sacrum!
3. They want a healthier baby, starting with a healthier momma. That fight/flight response is not just for mom. Stress, and that stress response, is contagious. Stressed out moms result in stressed out babies which can increase the risk for reflux, colic, latch issues, etc!But when mom is healthy, relaxed, comfortable through prenatal chiropractic care, babies grow, develop and thrive, and they don’t tend to have issues like reflux, colic, constipation, latch issues, developmental delays, etc. So we work to make sure that every momma achieves her goals through labor and delivery, whether it be a VBAC, 5th natural birth, a 2nd scheduled c-section whatever it may be! So that the nervous system is calm so that you can be relaxed and the baby can be stress free. We are here to energize, empower, and enhance your labor and delivery and allow you to reach your goals!