For Mums with new babies - How to avoid Back Pain
As all mums well know, having a baby is really hard work. Changing nappies, breastfeeding, putting baby in carriers will all challenge your back… and then there’s bending to pick things up time and time again. We all recognise that game when rattles, spoons and cups get thrown overboard just to make mum pick them up again. Although for most new mums back pain isn’t totally crippling, it can take several months before back pain eases after the birth.
Chiropractor Jade Campbell-Bell from Healthcare 2000 Clinics has prepared a list of helpful suggestions to make breastfeeding comfortable in the first few months.
You will probably be spending a long time sitting when you are feeding, so bring your baby up to your breast.
Place a pillow in the small of your back so your spine stays straight and does not sag backwards. If you tire with your baby at your breast you can put more pillows on your lap to support your arms.
Be alert to repeated strains as you bend to pick up and feed your baby throughout the day (and night). You can choose several positions for feeding and alternate them to avoid overloading the same muscles with every feed.
If you still get back pain, why not place a mirror so you can watch your position and adjust it till your back feels more comfortable.
If sitting remains a problem, you can try standing up and feeding with your baby in a suitable carrier as you move about to relieve the strains on your back muscles. You will need one where baby can be placed facing inwards and higher up to feed, with a belt round the hips to spread the load evenly and with wide, padded straps to avoid stressing your shoulders and neck.
If you are finding breast feeding is causing strain on your back, you can always try biological nurturing (laid-back breast feeding). This way you can find a comfortable position for you and the baby that reduces discomfit in the back, this is also a beneficial way of feeding after a C-section as it doesn’t cause strain on the abdominal muscles.
It is also great for creating skin-to-skin contact between mother and baby and bonding.
Once you feel ready to begin exercising you will need some gentle activities. Walking is great to start with and you can also adjust your daily habits to start using your core muscles more, such as sitting on an exercise ball to watch TV or eat meals as you engage your core.
You will also need to target your back and abdominal muscles and prepare your body to distribute the load whilst carrying your baby. Don’t be overambitious at this early stage and avoid any exercise that could overload your pelvic floor.
Start with a gentle exercise lying flat on your back on the floor, knees bent, feet flat on the floor and arms by your side. Breath in and then, as you breathe out, draw your tummy muscles in and squeeze your buttock muscles together. Hold for five and repeat ten times. It’s a great starter, but as the weeks pass by you will need to advance further.
If you would like to know more, why not book to see Jade for a free screen where you can discuss your symptoms, seek advice and learn how you can best avoid suffering from new-mum back pain.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org and type FREE SCREEN WITH JADE and your name and phone number and we will phone you back.
If you prefer you can ring us on 0800 1244417.