Can osteopathic treatment help me after my baby is born? When is the best time for a visit?
I see a lot of pregnant women in my office (you can read why here), so I’m often asked how I can help new moms. Back and neck pain, fatigue, and varying degrees of pee problems are the most common postpartum complaints I hear.
Osteopathic treatment is an effective way to address these and other concerns. It can aid your recovery and help prevent future problems due to unresolved issues.
If you have any difficulty breastfeeding, please make an appointment right away. Treatment of both mom and baby can make a big difference! You can check out my 10 signs your little one could benefit from osteopathy for more about why I treat infants.
For uncomplicated deliveries, I recommend a check-up four to six weeks post. I’ll assess your alignment and make sure everything is back in the right place and moving well. Including your internal organs.
Osteopathic care can make the day-to-day demands of motherhood a little easier too. Treatment eases postural strains resulting from long hours spent holding and feeding your baby. It can also harmonize your nervous system, improve sleep and help hormonal balance.
Help With Healing
If your delivery was traumatic or required medical interventions, please contact me. It’s often better to intervene earlier to speed recovery and prevent future problems.
Forceps or ventouse (vacuum) delivery can leave strains in pelvic tissues. These interventions may alter the position of the uterus and bladder too. Epidurals can irritate the membranes lining the spinal canal and covering the spinal cord. Gentle cranial, myofascial and visceral approaches are effective in normalizing both position and mobility.
Caesarean sections leave layers of scar tissue on the uterus and pelvic tissues. Releasing adhesions and mobilizing the scar tissue can alleviate low back and pelvic pain. This work is also important for future reproductive health, fertility and successful vaginal births.
Core & Pelvic Floor
Diastasis recti, pelvic organ prolapse, and incontinence mean your core is not working well. Even a little sneeze pee is a sign that you could use some help. Contrary to popular belief, these can affect anyone, not just women who’ve delivered vaginally. Balancing tension in your diaphragm, pelvic floor, and abdominal muscles helps restore optimal function.
The postnatal period can be stressful. Treatment can shift your nervous system from ‘fight or flight’ mode to the restorative ‘rest and digest’ state.
Postpartum depression may be linked to tension in the spinal membranes and altered position of the sacrum and coccyx. Evidence suggests that osteopathy may offer effective adjunctive care. If you feel down or depressed, be sure to speak to your primary healthcare provider. They can conduct a comprehensive assessment and refer you to appropriate local resources.
Take it Easy
I can suggest restorative exercises too. But please, take it easy in the first few weeks post-delivery. Focus on yourself and enjoy your time bonding with your newborn. Rest. Practice some mindful breathing.
Here’s a simple exercise to start: Breathe into your lower rib cage. Feel it expand – front, side, and back, with each inhalation. Allow your upper chest and belly to stay relaxed. Exhale slowly and fully. This helps release tension in your diaphragm and pelvic floor to reduce internal pressure. Plus it activates your deep abdominal muscles – bonus!
In the following few weeks, add some gentle walks and easy stretching. When you’re ready for more, an alignment-friendly class like MamaMoves is a perfect choice. You can even bring your pre-crawling baby along.
It’s never too late to seek osteopathic care. Treatment can be effective at any age or stage in life.
What are your post-birth concerns? Please let me know in the comments below.