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It's Webster Wednesday here at the office! Today my friend and patient Claudia came in for some prenatal holistic chiropractic care.
Claudia is 5.5 months pregnant with her baby boy and has been experiencing excruciating lower back and sacrum area pain along with complaints that her walk already feels like a difficult waddle.
Last month, I attended a prenatal and perinatal chiropractic care with Webster Certification seminar in Vancouver, BC. Today, I was beyond thrilled to put my new skills in caring for pregnant women to work.
Webster technique is a chiropractic analysis and treatment technique that has many, many benefits, including:
*decreased physical pain, often associated with pregnancy
*increased spinal alignment particularly of the lower back, hips, and pelvis, offering greater potential for optimal positioning of baby in the uterus
*increased nervous system functioning of both mother and baby
*increased pelvic and core muscle tone, which assists in birthing
*increased blood flow and healing
*decreased uterus torsion
*a more balanced sympathetic (fight or flight) and parasympathetic (rest, heal, digest) nervous system
*stress reduction for both mother and baby
*reduced labor times and pain, as revealed in research study done by Dr. Joan Fallon
With Claudia, we had GREAT results. Claudia came in with a reported 6/10 lower back pain (10 being at its worst), and left with zero back pain. None! She also felt that her gait improved and became much more smooth. Then there are of course there are all of the many benefits that may not be perceived immediately upon care, but that are happening from the moment we begin the treatment.
We plan to treat Claudia at least once a month until the baby arrives, and then after the baby arrives.
Many thanks to Claudia for including chiropractic in her prenatal care regimen. She has dedicated the time and energy to make this a part of her health program, and I am grateful to be her chiropractor!
This latest post is with my patient Shayla, and it's all about working on lower core! First, a happy thanks to Shayla for posing with me and agreeing to share some of the work we do together.
Shayla came to me with one of the most common issues we all hear about-lower back pain. In Shayla's case, one element we really need to work on is her core strength particularly lower core.
The muscles of the lower core include portions of the rectus abdominus (the six pack abs), the obliques, the transverse abdominus, pelvic floor muscles, and more. These muscles, when engaged properly, offer fundamental support and stability to the spine, which is critical in preventing lower back issues and pain.
So how do we strengthen the core? In the office, I have learned how to muscle test all of the various sections of the abomdinals (thank you, Dr. Timothy Francis) to determine which ones are firing properly and which ones aren't. The different core muscles may not be working well for a number of reasons. These reasons include-spinal misalignment, musculoskeletal imbalance, gastro-intestinal issues and inflammation, cranial (skull) faults/misalignments, emotional stresses for example fear and mistrust as well as others, and more.
Once we have identified the inhibited core muscles with muscle testing, we can treat them with spinal manipulation, muscle therapy, reflex point and organ system work, lymphatic points, mind-body techniques, homeopathic remedies, and a number of other holistic health techniques.
Only then, when the patient returns home to their regular exercise or core work that they do, will the muscles neurologically now fire correctly! The core exercises will then be much more effective, and the back pain will be on its way to resolution.
These days, Shayla barely mentions her lower back. Maybe a tweak here or a tweak there, but all in all, she's doing fabulous, and this work is part of the reason why. Thank you to my awesome patient Shayla!
Shayla and Dr. Amanda
Muscle testing Shayla's core muscles
In 2011, Learning how to muscle test the abdominal muscles with Dr. Timothy Francis
One of the most important times for a woman to be adjusted is throughout her pregnancy. One of the most important times for anyone to be adjusted is as a newborn. Why is this? Let me go into more detail.
During pregnancy, the body is going through rapid changes and growth. Oftentimes, the hips/pelvis (and entire spine really) is or can become imbalanced. This can lead to uterine tension which can restrict the baby's movement and even contribute to a compromised position of the baby in the uterus. It can also cause the mother pain and discomfort. There may also be decreased uterine and pelvic muscle tone/expulsion force which can slow down or contribute to a difficult labor. In addition, many pregnant women experience daily life stresses or added stresses associated with pregnancy, which can cause decreased blood and oxygen flow to the uterus and baby, and expose the baby to stress hormones at a delicate time.
Chiropractic care can greatly help with all of these. The Webster Technique, which I learned this past weekend, is a system of chiropractic analysis and adjustive techniques which reduces nervous system stress, balances the mothers hips/pelvis structure, muscles and ligaments, and optimizes the mothers pelvic function in pregnancy and birth.
Moreover, chiropractic care can reduce nervous system stress thus enhancing organ and muscle function, alleviating spinal tension, decreasing sympathetic (fight or flight high stress mode) and increasing parasympathetic (rest, heal, and digest mode), restoring normal pelvic muscle tone and balance, and offering the best physiological environment for the baby to assume an optimal position for birth.
Why should infants receive chiropractic care? Our very first spinal misalignments often occur during the birthing process, often from mechanical forces to the baby. Gentle chiropractic care can immediately support spinal alignment and nervous system function in infants, which can in turn improve a multitude a possible issues, including colic, difficulty breastfeeding, reflux, skin issues, insomnia, torticollis, intestinal issues, and more. Based on large chiropractic reporting surveys, the three most common improvements noticed by parents in their children who are undergoing chiropractic care is improved disposition, improved immune function, and improved sleep. Here is one research study supporting the safety and effectiveness of pediatric chiropractic care.
Many women today may associate pregnancy and labor/birthing as uncomfortable, painful, scary, difficult, and a number of other things. The truth is that women's bodies are designed for pregnancy and birth, and it can be both comfortable and safe. Chiropractic offers supportive, natural care that trusts this important truth and empowers women to know and embrace this truth as well.
I look forward to implementing more care for pregnant women, infants and children into my practice after this wonderful weekend. Thank you all for reading!
Assessing the pelvis
Gentle adjustment of a woman who is 38 weeks pregnant
Working the round ligament of the uterus
Working the round ligament of the uterus
International Chiropractic Pediatric Association
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