There are numerous benefits to chiropractic care by an ICPA Webster-certified practitioner during pregnancy. Many advantages include reduction of back pain commonly associated with late pregnancy, less likelihood of having a breech presentation, better positioned babies, faster, and smoother labors and deliveries. As someone who chose to use chiropractic care during the third trimester of pregnancy, I can personally attest to its benefits and share that personal experience with clients. I highly recommend chiropractic care to all my clients and find that those mothers who chose chiropractic care have easier pregnancies and the best outcomes on birth day.
What is different about Webster?
Dr. Larry Webster, Founder of ICPA (International Chiropractic Pediatric Association) discovered this technique as a way to safely restore pelvic alignment and function for pregnant mothers. Misalignments in the sacrum and pelvis structure cause pulling and torsion on the supporting muscles and ligaments. These muscles and ligaments have a negative effect on the uterus, preventing baby from finding optimal fetal positioning for birth.
It is recommended that pregnant women have their spines checked frequently throughout their pregnancy. The adjustment consists of two steps, an adjustment as necessary of the SI joint and the sacrum, and soft tissue contact opposite round ligament of the restriction. This releases intrauterine constraint and allows baby to find an ideal position.
Other benefits of chiropractic care:
Due to the immense changes a woman’s body goes through during pregnancy, her musculoskeletal system must constantly adapt to the changes the growing baby puts on it. Her center of gravity changes and this can happen so quickly it is difficult for the pelvis and spine to keep up. Subluxations result and pull on the connected supporting ligaments to the uterus. The result of these subluxations and strain on uterine ligaments is pain and discomfort, and chiropractic can provide a more comfortable pregnancy.
Subluxations interfere with the functioning of the nervous system. Interference to the nervous system during pregnancy can slow or halt messages the brain is trying to communicate with the body.
Subluxations can also cause malpresentation and malposition of the baby, including breech presentation and posterior positioning, which can complicate labor and cause dystocia. Labor with a malpositioned baby can be much longer and more painful, increasing maternal exhaustion and the need for drugs and interventions. The second stage of labor also is much more difficult as baby tries to maneuver the pelvis improperly positioned to do so.
My personal experience with chiropractic care:
I began receiving adjustments during my VBAC pregnancy at the start of the third trimester. I had read a lot about posterior babies sabotaging VBAC attempts and I did not want that to be me. I also knew since I had a vertical scar on my uterus, I did not want to be laboring any longer than I absolutely had to.
Webster adjustments sure made me feel a lot better. My back did not ache quite so much, and I was certainly more comfortable. I also noticed a reduction in the amount of preterm labor contractions I had. Having gone into preterm labor in all 3 of my earlier pregnancies, I was relieved to get relief from those worrisome and bothersome contractions. Because of my history I was adjusted 3 times a week and noticed results after the first week.
My baby quickly got into alignment and the proper position and was well engaged at about 33 weeks along. This had some negatives because since he was so low, I had no bladder left and woke up 5 times a night to use the bathroom. But since I had delivered two babies at 35 weeks, I was happy to have a well-positioned baby.
On birth day my water broke before I was having good contractions. I was at first a bit upset by this, fearing the dreaded “clock.” Thankfully labor started 30 minutes later, and after only 5 hours 25 minutes, my baby was here. Labor was not at all unbearable, and not even what I would consider painful until I was 10 cm. I really attribute that fast, relatively easy labor to the chiropractic care I received and the perfectly positioned baby that resulted. I love my chiropractors!
Learn more about Webster technique here.
You can find a Webster-certified chiropractor in your area here.