Low back pain is a common complaint among pregnant women. It is estimated that about 50% of pregnant women complain of some form of back pain at some point in pregnancy or during the postpartum period. Research suggests that up to as many as 20% of women experience this discomfort for three to six months after giving birth

During pregnancy, your expanding uterus stretched and weakened your abdominal muscles and altered your posture, which put strain on your back. Extra weight during (and after) pregnancy not only means more work for your muscles, but also increased stress on your joints. In addition, hormonal changes during pregnancy that prepared your body to give birth loosened the joints and ligaments that attach your pelvis to your spine.

Common Causes:

– Relaxin hormone making the joints and ligaments more mobile
– Improper posture
– Weakened abdominal muscles
– Changes in sleeping positions
– Previous history of low back pain
– Lack of exercises
– Increased weight
– Bad breast-feeding positions

Common symptoms of low back pain in pregnancy:

– More frequent during second trimester
– Worsen with prolonged period of standing
– Worsen at nights
– Eased with rest

How to get rid of postnatal low back pain?

Study showed that an individually tailored program with stabilising exercises involving all relevant muscles, delivered under the guidance of a certified therapist with high treatment compliance was shown to be effective on Low back pain.

– Imply proper lifting tecnhiques
– Strengthen your core muscles
– Practise correct posture
– Proper sleeping positions
– Lose weight

Here are few useful tips on postures to ease your back pain after delivery:

1. Carvalho, M. E. C. C., Lima, L. C., de Lira Terceiro, C. A., Pinto, D. R. L., Silva, M. N., Cozer, G. A., & Couceiro, T. C. M. (2017). Lombalgia na gestação [Low back pain during pregnancy]. Revista brasileira de anestesiologia67(3), 266–270. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bjan.2016.03.002
2. Tseng, P. C., Puthussery, S., Pappas, Y., & Gau, M. L. (2015). A systematic review of randomised controlled trials on the effectiveness of exercise programs on Lumbo Pelvic Pain among postnatal women. BMC pregnancy and childbirth15, 316. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12884-015-0736-4
3. Robles, B. (2021). 5 Easy Postpartum Back Pain Exercises [How To Get Relief At Home]. Retrieved from https://postpartumtrainer.com/postpartum-back-pain-exercises/
4. van Benten, E., Pool, J., Mens, J., & Pool-Goudzwaard, A. (2014). Recommendations for physical therapists on the treatment of lumbopelvic pain during pregnancy: a systematic review. The Journal of orthopaedic and sports physical therapy44(7), 464–A15. https://doi.org/10.2519/jospt.2014.5098
5. Levine, H. (2022). Postpartum back pain: How to get relief. Retrieved from https://www.babycenter.com/baby/postpartum-health/postpartum-back-pain-how-to-get-relief_1152191

Prepared By:

Tan Xiao Jiun

Your Physio Penang

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