As all new moms know, pregnancy is an exciting and turbulent time. Throughout the course of pregnancy, the body changes in many ways. Not only do these changes impact your spine, but they may also impact how you care for your newborn post-birth.
Once you’ve welcomed your little one into the world, almost everything you do becomes about them and caring for them. And lifting, carrying, feeding, and supporting your baby can cause back pain — especially if you’re not careful. With that in mind, we’ve taken the time to round up our best tips to avoid back pain while you care for your new bundle of joy.
Breastfeeding Back Support
Certain feeding positions can cause strain on your neck, shoulders, and back, particularly if you’re leaning forward or you’re not sitting in a way that supports your back. While you’re focused on feeding your baby adequately and bonding with them, the way you’re sitting may not come to mind until you experience neck, shoulder, or back pain.
Leaning forward while working on latching is extremely common, and many moms fall into this position or slouch, simply because they’re exhausted and just want to be comfortable. These positions, which aren’t conducive to a healthy spine, cause the muscles working hard to be starved of blood supply, resulting in pain. It also places strain on muscles that aren’t meant to be under stress for long durations.
As a new mom who is breastfeeding, you may also try to avoid taking over-the-counter medications for the pain, so all-natural ways of relieving the tension are the best option. So, what else should you know? How can you fix and avoid back pain as you care for your baby and yourself?
All-Natural Tips for Back Pain Relief
Inevitably, you want to ensure you can remain pain-free as you recover from birth and watch your child grow. After all, you don’t want to miss any moment or any firsts that your little one experiences. With that in mind, here are some of the best tips for back pain relief for new moms:
- Keep your back straight and supported while sitting during feeding. Use a pillow or cushion for extra support, and make sure you can place your feet firmly on the ground. There are also specific pillows designed for maternity that you can invest in that work like a charm.
- Try to get as much rest as you can and ensure your mattress isn’t contributing to your back pain. (Again, certain pillows, such as body pillows, may help with supporting your back as you sleep.)
- Take a warm bath with Epsom salts. This can help relax tense muscles.
- Get a massage. Similar to a warm bath, this can release tension and stress, as well as alleviate any muscle knots.
- Stay hydrated. Dehydration can occur unknowingly, causing you to feel fatigued and also leading to muscular cramps, soreness, and weakness.
- Self-care while being a new mom is vital. Take time to stretch or do some quick yoga poses to help ease the tension in your back, hips, shoulders, and neck.
- Ensure your back is straight when pushing your baby in the pram or buggy. Throughout these activities, try to focus on engaging your core, tightening through the abdominals in between the hips bones.
- When choosing a sling, pick one that evenly distributes the baby’s weight across your body, rather than having it all on one shoulder and one hip. Having their body weight distributed more evenly will help reduce the damage caused to your back while carrying your little one.
- When lifting your child or their car seat, bend your knees, keep your back straight and hold them close to your body. Focus on your leg muscles, squeeze your pelvic floor, and use your abdominal muscles. Even when you’re in a rush, safe lifting should always be a priority.
- Make sure your changing table is elevated. When changing nappies, your little one should be raised so you don’t have to lean forward to change them. (In addition to this, ensure you don’t leave your little one unattended at any time when they are on a raised surface.)
If you’re a new mom struggling with back pain, you may want to consider booking a visit with your local chiropractor. Even with stretching and yoga, you may need some back strengthening exercises to help ease the pain, along with a personalised treatment plan.
Since 1989, Bradford House Chiropractic Clinic has been helping new moms with their back pain, sciatica, neck pain, cervicogenic headaches, or other joint and muscle pains. Our team of expert chiropractors take your comfort seriously and are ready to treat you with a plan tailored to your personal needs. Book your appointment with us today.