My Pregnancy Weeks 13-17- Back Pain!

I am now well into my second trimester so thought it was a good time to update everyone on my progress.

I feel fabulous! Wonder woman can move aside as I am unstoppable! Now it is possible this is just because I have got over the initial fatigue of early pregnancy and the feeling I had been run over by a bus.  I am probably just back to my normal pre-pregnancy energy levels, however compared to the first trimester I feel incredible. Whatever the reason for it, I am not complaining!

Sex drive

This has returned!  Once you enter the 2nd trimester the blood flow to the pelvic region increases dramatically, which means so does your sensitivity.  Good news for your sex drive, bad news for waxing!  I think I need say no more on this matter!

Low back/pelvic pain

I know it might sound shocking, but yes I,  A CHIROPRACTOR,  have had some lower back pain/coccyx pain!  It teaches me valuable lessons, not only to listen to my body, but also in understanding my patients bodies.  I now have even more empathy!

It is very common to experience this during pregnancy.  For me it began at 13-14 weeks, this is the time we get a surge in the hormone relaxin.  Relaxin is a wonderful hormone, which increases the motion in your pelvis, allowing your uterus to expand.  It’s paramount in the birthing process, enabling your sacrum (tailbone) to move out of the way when you give birth.  This is why laying on your back during labour is counter productive, it reduces the diameter of your birth canal and believe me you do not want that.  I will talk more about labour postures when I get closer to the end of my pregnancy.

My pain has made me feel like I have been kicked in the butt by a horse.  At its worst it lasted 2 weeks, now it is more intermittent.  Since we have been telling everyone our wonderful news, people want to give up their chairs for the pregnant lady.  I do have to politely decline, sitting for more than 5 minutes makes things 20x worse!

Main reasons for low back/pelvic pain in pregnancy:

  1. Hormonal changes: your joints are becoming more flexible to allow for your baby to grow and then the birthing process to take place.  This does put more stress on your joints, any imbalances you may previously have had now come to the fore.
  2. Posture: This links in with your hormonal changes and previous postural imbalances.  As your baby and boobs grow you suddenly have more weight pulling you forwards and this can really impact how your body feels.
  3. Exercise:  You need to get the right balance. You must keep moving, don’t be afraid to move because doing nothing leads to weakened muscle so less support around the pelvis.  Yoga is a wonderful at strengthening, however you are more flexible so must hold back on postures.  High impact exercise can also irritate your symptoms, if you didn’t do it before you fell pregnant now is not the time to start. Swimming is a wonderful gentle all over body work out, I highly reccomend this.  It is so important to maintain your fitness (giving birth is not a walk in the park, more like a marathon!) Listen to your body and do what feels good.

Chiropractic Care for Low back/pelvis pain:

If your pelvis is out of alignment you are much more likely to experience low back/pelvic pain.  I am adjusted reguarly, but the nature of my work and also past injuries does mean my posture is not perfect (gasp!) This definitely impacts how my pelvis is adapting in pregnancy.  If I was not adjusted regualrly I can only imagine things would have lasted a whole lot longer!

If you are experiencing these kind of symptoms, get in touch.  We can help with the pain and also advise you appropriately how to manage these symptoms.

The first thing that it really important for you to know is IT WILL GET BETTER.  About 80% of women expereince some low back/pelvic pain in pregnancy.  You can feel it across the low back at the junction between the lumbar spine and sacrum. In either sacro-iliac joint anywhere along its length or in the pubic symphysis.  The pain you experience maybe localised to one spot, or if you are lucky like me, it may radiate.

I experience pain along my left sacro-iliac joint which refers into my left bottom and posterior left thigh.  I would describe it as a constant dull ache that intensifes on sitting.  Thankfully I know just what to do to

1) Help myself

Gentle exercise, including walking, yoga, swimming and pilates.  Gym ball exercises (vlog to come showing you how to do these).  Gentle massage with a tennis ball into my gluteals and very gentle hip flexor stretches.

2) Seek care from a qualified professional (thank you Michele!)

 

First scan

The scan letter requested I have a full bladder for this appointment and I dutifully obliged.  I was busting when we arrived, only to have to wait another 15 minutes for the appointment! As soon as the sonographer popped the ultrasound wand on my belly I was informed my bladder was too full and could I go and have a 10 second wee! Do you know how hard that is!?
Anyway job done and we were finally able to see our little baby.  What a relief to know there was a baby actually there and everything was looking just perfect.  We are so pleased and looking forward to the year ahead knowing this little bundle of joy will be joining us sometime in the summer.
Our greedy bean at 13 weeks (this nickname has stuck after the incredible fatigue in the first trimester! You can thank your father!)