Chiropractic Care And Pregnancy: Finding Relief From Common Painful Symptoms

by Dr. Callan Martin DC, CCSP® Webster Certified last edited 4/19/2023

Chiropractors may provide pain relief, decreased labor times and improved vitality in pregnancy.

Chiropractic Care During Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a time of great change for a woman’s body. As the baby grows, the mother’s body changes. As the abdomen grows, the center of gravity shifts forward. More weight is born throughout the joints, muscles, tendons and ligaments of the body. The mother’s spine and other joints can become misaligned, leading to pain and discomfort. Chiropractic care can help to correct these misalignments and improve overall health and comfort during pregnancy.

Benefits Of Chiropractic Care for Pregnant Women

There are many benefits to receiving chiropractic care during pregnancy, including:

  • Reduced pain: Chiropractic adjustments can help to reduce pain in the back, neck, hips, and other areas.
  • Improved circulation: Improved circulation can help to reduce swelling and improve blood flow to the baby.
  • Increased energy: Improved circulation can also lead to increased energy levels.  Reduced pain and more efficient joint movement lead to greater feeling of energy and vitality.
  • Better sleep: Chiropractic adjustments can help to improve sleep quality and reduce pain in joints caused by pressure.
  • Reduced stress: Chiropractic care can help to reduce stress levels, which can be beneficial for both the mother and the baby.
  • Faster labor: Studies have shown that women who receive chiropractic care during pregnancy have shorter labors.
  • Healthier babies: Babies born to mothers who received chiropractic care during pregnancy have been shown to have lower rates of birth defects and other health problems.

Is Chiropractic Care Safe For Women During Pregnancy?

Chiropractic care is generally safe for pregnant women. However, it is important to choose a chiropractor who is experienced in treating pregnant women. Your chiropractor will be able to assess your individual needs and create a treatment plan that is safe and effective for you and your baby.

What to Expect At Your Chiropractic Appointment

Your first chiropractic appointment during pregnancy will typically include a full history of your GTPAL, how many prior pregnancies you have had and any symptoms or complications you have had during your current pregnancy. It will also include a full exam of your spine and other joints. Your chiropractor will look for any misalignments of joints or irregular tension in muscles that may be causing pain or discomfort. Once any misalignments have been identified, your chiropractor will adjust your spine using gentle, specific movements.

Can Pregnant Women Be Adjusted?

Our office uses the Webster Technique with most of our pregnant patients. It is a specific technique designed in 1976 that is specific to the conditions and changes experienced during pregnancy. It is very specific and safe for the mother and fetus. Our office also uses a special table designed for the abdomen to fit comfortably and safely while the patient is lying face down.

How Often Should I See a Chiropractor During Pregnancy?

The frequency of your chiropractic appointments will depend on your individual needs. Some women may only need to see their chiropractor once or twice a month, while others may need to see them more often. Your chiropractor will be able to advise you on the best frequency of visits for you.

If you are pregnant and are experiencing pain or discomfort, talk to your doctor about whether chiropractic care may be right for you. Chiropractic care can be a safe and effective way to improve your health and well-being during pregnancy.

Common Conditions Chiropractic Care May Help With

  • Cramping
  • Headaches
  • Back Pain
  • Pelvic Pain
  • Hip Pain
  • Knee Pain
  • Sciatica
  • “Lightning Crotch”
  • Leg Cramps
  • Round Ligament Pain
  • Rib Pain
  • Fatigue

Can Chiropractors Turn Breech Babies?

Chiropractors are not recognized as licensed to practice techniques to turn breech babies. However, many pregnant mothers have experienced an improvement in baby positioning following a Webster Technique adjustment and accompanying release of tight muscles in the abdomen, pelvis and hips. This is thought to be a result of loosening uterine contractures or torsion, allowing the fetus to maneuver better on it’s own. A breech baby may be caused by many serious medical complications and you should be evaluated by an OB/GYN specialist if you suspect your baby is breech.

Specialty Training and Certification In Treating Pregnant Mothers and Children

Most Doctor of Chiropractic school curriculum include training in Obstetrics, Gynecology and Pediatrics, allowing Chiropractors to identify common symptoms present in special populations of patients. With the current state of hands-on training at Chiropractic schools, many doctors do not gain experience with pregnant patients or children until they are in private practice. The ICPA or International Chiropractic Pediatrics Association has provided post-graduate training for Chiropractors wanting to improve their skills and clinical expertise when working with pregnant patients and children. Dr. Larry Webster (1959 Logan alumni) developed the Webster Technique for pregnant patients in 1976 and later taught pediatric chiropractic for 11 years at Life Chiropractic College. He founded the ICPA to provide an association to support field doctors in their care of patients. The ICPA is a leader in research to support the Chiropractic profession and advocate of Chiropractic care for children and pregnant patients. Our doctors are all Webster certified and belong to the ICPA

Ready To Start Care?

If you are pregnant or know of someone who is expecting that could benefit from Chiropractic Care, contact our Overland Park office at 913-276-0508.