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Pregnancy

At first glance, most people don’t see the connection between chiropractic and pregnancy. However, there are four stages in which having an optimally working nervous system can help both mother and child.

Pregnancy and chiropractic care

Many pregnant patients often report shorter, more pleasant deliveries when they receive chiropractic care.

Pre-Conception

Chiropractic care prior to conception promotes a more regular menstrual cycle and optimal uterine function. It prepares the body to be strong, supple, and as balanced as possible to carry the pregnancy. 

Pregnancy

Chiropractic care may result in easier pregnancy including increased comfort during the third trimester and delivery and reduced need for pain medication. Altered weight bearing and movement patterns during pregnancy can place additional pressure on the muscles, ligaments, joints, discs and bones of a woman’s spine and can uncover regions that are not working well. 50% of women experience significant levels of back or pelvic pain during their pregnancy, leading many of them them to resort to pain relief such as paracetamol. But research shows that chiropractic care may help to relieve these symptoms in up to 85% of pregnant women1,2. In one study, 17 pregnant women under chiropractic care reported an original pain score of 5.9. After chiropractic care, they reported a pain score of 1.53.

Establishing pelvic balance and alignment is another reason to obtain chiropractic care during pregnancy. When the pelvis is misaligned it may reduce the amount of room available for the developing baby. This restriction is called intrauterine constraint. A misaligned pelvis may also make it difficult for the baby to get into the best possible position for delivery. Webster Technique is a specialised chiropractic technique used to restore normal function of the pelvis so the baby can get into the ideal position for birth.

Labour and Birth

Adjusting women throughout pregnancy is a rewarding part of our work, because a healthier pregnancy means an easier labour and delivery, and a better transition for the baby into this life.

Women experience on average a 24% reduction in the length of labour time with chiropractic care during pregnancy and that rises to a 33% reduction for those mothers who have given birth before4. By altering the biomechanics and neuromuscular control of the pelvis chiropractic, enables the muscles to become more relaxed and joints more mobile, which helps them to expand more freely during labour and settle more easily afterwards.

This improves the ease of delivery, creating less stress and pressure for both the mother and baby. It also means there is less likelihood or need to use interventions such as forceps or cesarean section, which can impact upon both mother and newborn child. C-sections have become increasingly common over the last few decades, and now account for as many as one in four births. While they are a necessary and safe option in some high-risk or complicated cases, studies show that natural and drug-free births are safer and healthier in both the short and long term.

After Birth

Even natural births can stress a baby’s spine. Breastfeeding problems can arise if the baby has a subluxation and is unable to comfortably turn its head to one side.

Relax. We use special approaches to make our adjustments safe and comfortable for you and your child.


1. Diakow, P., et al. Back pain during pregnancy and labour. J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 1991 14(2).
2.   Borggren, C. Pregnancy and chiropractic: a narrative review of the literature. J Chiropr Med. 2007 6(2): 70–74.
3.   Lisi,  A.J. Chiropractic spinal manipulation for low back pain of pregnancy: a retrospective case series. Journal of Midwifery & Women’s Health. 2006 51:e7-10.
4. UNMC study links use of nonprescription cough medicine to miscarriages, birth defects. Pediatric Research. 1998 1-7.


Frequently Asked Questions:

  • Will adjustments hurt my baby?
    Of course not. This is a common concern amongst parents who mistakenly think their child will receive adjustments like the ones they receive. Not only are adjusting techniques modified for each person’s size and unique spinal problem, an infant’s spine rarely has the long-standing muscle tightness seen in adults. This makes the energy needed to adjust a child’s spine considerably less than an adult’s does.
  • Will adjustments make my spine too loose?
    No. Only the spinal joints that are “locked up” receive adjustments. This allows weakened muscles and ligaments to stabilise and heal.
  • Pregnancy is natural. Why would I need chiropractic?
    Being born is a natural phenomenon. It’s what we’ve done to the birth process that has become increasingly suspect. In hospitals, birth is often treated like a disease. A newborn’s introduction to the world is often accompanied by a severe drop in temperature, loud noises and other insensitivities. The administration of drugs and anesthesia can have a profound effect on a newborn.
  • Will my medical doctor approve?
    First, you don’t need anyone’s approval to seek a chiropractic opinion about health issues affecting your child! The judgment of another health care expert is always helpful in the decision-making process. Medical practitioners keeping up with the latest pediatric chiropractic research are starting to understand the value of this natural, drug-free approach to better health.
  • What does my spine have to do with my baby?
    Pregnancy may be one of the best times to receive chiropractic care! While it’s always good to have an optimally functioning nervous system, it’s especially helpful now. Both mother and baby can benefit. Adjusting methods are adapted to a mother’s size, weight and condition. During this period of weight gain and hormonal changes, many mothers seek chiropractic care. Some report shorter and easier births.