POSTPARTUM PELVIC PAIN
Updated: Jun 11, 2018
There are mothers that express pelvic pain after delivery. Backache accompanies pelvic pain during pregnancy and after delivery. They apply pain relief patch or heat packs, thinking that the pain is natural, but they end up visiting the clinic once the pain becomes unbearable.
The body of a pregnant and postpartum woman go through variety of changes, and one of them is asymmetry of the pelvis caused by pelvic laxity after delivery. The center of gravity shifts forward because of the increase of body weight and the heaviness of the belly after six months of pregnancy, and the hip tilts backward as a natural reaction. The increase of weight and natural tilting of the hip to the back put strain on the spine and pelvis, therefore, leading up to backache with pelvic pain.
Furthermore, there is vigorous secretion of hormone called relaxin that opens up the pelvis to expand the birth canal for a favorable delivery. Once the pelvis goes through delivery but cannot rearrange itself properly, the weight shifts to one side of the leg as one leg becomes shorter than the other. There is pain because the tendons and muscle that have become weak cannot support the pelvis.
The hormone relaxin affects not only the pelvic joints, but it affects all the joints of the body. The joints feel loose as if a screw became loose. While the frail body is stimulated by this hormone, weight gain, childbirth, housework and childcare, and breastfeeding can put strain on joints and on tendons, muscles, and nerves around that joint, eventually inducing to pain.
Muscular skeletal disease of pre and postpartum not only cause joint pain, but also affect next pregnancy; therefore, restoration of the unbalanced pelvis and reinforcement of the weakened muscle and tendons are necessary for postpartum care. Many pregnant women suffer backache but refuse to receive treatment because it might affect the newborn; however, acupuncture is a safe treatment for the first five months of pregnancy.
The health of the pregnant patient must be considered for the restoration of the slanted pelvis, and so, rather than receiving excessive bone manipulation, treatments such as herbal medicine, acupuncture therapy, and cupping therapy are recommended to relax muscle tension and help with Qi circulation for pain relief. The first six months after childbirth, when the hormone relaxin is secreted for the relaxation of the bone and muscle, is the best time to receive treatments. Full-body joint pain after improper postpartum care develop to chronic arthritis; therefore, planning methodically before delivery is desirable.
Regardless of the generation, acupuncture treatment is considered as one of the most necessary treatment for postpartum health care, even without hip or pelvic pain, and for getting pregnant again. Refrain from thinking that anyone can get pelvic pain or postpartum stroke. Recognizing warning signs from the body while pregnant is desirable for the health of both the mother and the baby. Be mindful that the body can become healthy without postpartum joint pain as long as the pelvis and spine are maintained during and after childbirth.
Hip and Pelvic Stretching:
Lie down facing up, grab your right ankle with both hands and slowly pull towards your chest.
Extend your arms out while lying in a comfortable position, lift your left leg over the right leg, and switch off the leg positions around the knee.
Lie down comfortably, lift both knees while the sole of the feet touch each other (Lying Lotus position). Stretch both sides evenly and hold for fifteen seconds for each position.
Published by KoreaTimes under <Health Column> on July 26th, 2016.