Postpartum chiropractic care is an often overlooked part of the recovery process after you have a baby. If you ask a chiropractor whether or not you should get adjusted, the answer will almost always be, “Yes! Of course!” In this case, I think it’s even more important to get adjusted after you have your baby than almost any other time.
You’ve just carried your beautiful bundle of joy around for nine months, and your body has gone through a lot of changes in order to accomplish this feat. In particular, a hormone called relaxin was in your system prior to delivery, allowing the ligaments to become more lax in order for you to have a successful delivery.
Following childbirth, that hormone will leave your system and your spine and pelvis will no longer be in good alignment. As the ligaments return to their normal elasticity, your pelvis will become less likely to return to its normal alignment. If you are out of alignment when the elasticity returns, you may find you will feel “crooked” or just “uneven.”
This occurs regardless of natural or c-section delivery. Seeing a chiropractor after c-section is still just as relevant to your recovery process. It’s not just the childbirth itself that causes the misalignment, but rather your posture while the baby grew and grew. You stood differently, sat differently, walked differently, and slept differently, especially during your third trimester. Your body was just different and your spine is feeling it.
Postpartum chiropractic care means adjustments to your low back and pelvis
Over the next few months, you’ll have sleepless nights and be reaching into the crib over and over again, putting more strain on your back muscles and your pelvis. If you jump back into exercise (especially running), you’ll notice that your body just doesn’t move like it did prior to pregnancy.
That’s where a proper spinal alignment from your chiropractor can be so helpful. Patients are often will ask, “when can I see a chiropractor postpartum?” Most patients wait a couple of weeks following delivery before venturing out of the home, but this is not related to your spine.
Your doctor will likely recommend rest due to the healing of your uterus, but if you need to see a chiropractor for postpartum back pain, there’s no time requirement as to how long you wait. We can be very gentle while still working towards giving you low back pain relief (the most common reason people see a chiropractor after delivery).
Once you arrive in our office, we do our first postpartum chiropractic checkup and the start of your adjustments. (We can check your newborn too – it just takes a couple of minutes and there’s no charge!) Patients also love PEMF therapy in addition to the postpartum chiropractic benefits, because they can get pain relief and help with pelvic floor dysfunction.
How much postpartum chiropractic do you need?
Depending on how much chiropractic care you had prior to your pregnancy, you may need a couple of adjustments to get back up to speed. I’ve found that patients that have been under regular chiropractic care pick right up where we left off. Those patients that just had a couple of adjustments to help with back pain and sciatica during pregnancy will need more care to get back to feeling normal again.
The answer to “Should I get adjusted after I have my baby?” is a clear and definite, “Without a doubt.” After seeing many pregnant patients who didn’t understand the value of a postpartum chiropractic care program, and seeing many new patients that “haven’t been able to exercise the same way after I had a baby,” it was time to make sure you knew the importance of an adjustment following natural childbirth or a c-section.
You will notice the difference and your ability to get back to your normal routine (as much as possible with a newborn) may very well depend on it! A postpartum pelvic adjustment will work wonders in helping you get pain relief and help you be at your best to care for your newborn.