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Can you go to the chiropractor while pregnant? What you need to know

One common question about pregnancy is, “Can you go to the chiropractor while pregnant?” If you’ve ever wondered if this practice is safe, then you’re not alone. Fortunately, we found answers to this question and more. Indeed, going to the chiropractor doesn’t cause harm to the mother or the baby. Plus, you can rest assured that chiropractic care provides benefits during all stages of pregnancy. Read on to find out which certifications to look for if you’re searching for a chiropractor, along with the benefits of chiropractic care, and finally the truth behind some myths about this field and its impact on prenatal care.

Chiropractic specialties related to pregnancy

You might be surprised that some chiropractors specialize in treating pregnant women. Others have also gone through extensive training to address other health-related areas aside from those related to the muscular-skeletal system.

So if you’re looking for a chiropractor who’s been trained in prenatal care, here are some certifications to look out for:

  • CACCP—indicates a certified chiropractor who has also completed ICPA coursework
  • DACCP—reflects the highest level of training related to ICPA
  • Webster Certified—the chiropractor is qualified to work with pelvic balance

The International Chiropractic Pediatric Association or ICPA designation means that the chiropractor has completed the coursework and training specifically for treating women in all stages of pregnancy, and also in the realm of perinatal care for extra support after having the baby and in pediatrics.

hands on a pregnant women's abdomen
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Benefits of chiropractic care for the mother

For the mother, chiropractic care offers an alternative that works well in conjunction with “traditional” medicine. During the first trimester, for instance, if you’re experiencing nausea, chiropractic care provides a possible route to relief. A chiropractor identifies the parts of the body that are adapting to all of the hormone changes. After that assessment is completed, he or she makes the necessary adjustments to those parts of the spine. Consequently, this adjustment lessens the stress on the nervous system, which decreases any negative impact on the digestive system.

Another benefit to receiving chiropractic care involves alignment of the spine and the neck, which relieves you of headaches and other issues related to muscle tension. Furthermore, as you get further into the pregnancy, a chiropractor can align your vertebrae to prevent your back from curving too much. Also, chiropractors can help with lower back pain by recommending some exercises and stretches to help with back discomfort, and often during a visit, they apply cold packs and heat accordingly which lessens tension or pain.

Benefits for the baby

Along with posture, a chiropractor assists with analysis and adjustments of the pelvis. This manipulation of the hip and pelvic bones reduces the pressure placed on the uterus and the ligaments that support it. Plus, they deal with misaligned pelvis, a situation that decreases the amount of space for the growing baby. This condition, known as intrauterine constraint, can also affect the position of the baby. In other words, if the baby doesn’t have enough space to turn over before delivery, then you would have a higher chance of needing a C-section.  However, a chiropractor who aligns the pelvis to make room for the baby well before your due date greatly decreases the chance of breech birth and thus, the need for surgery.

client getting a foot massage
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Debunked Myths

At the same time, some individuals have some misconceptions about chiropractic care during pregnancy. For instance, a few commonly held myths involve:

  • A lack of safety for both mother and baby
  • Treatment for only the spinal column
  • A fixated focus on adjustment

As you can see, chiropractic care not only benefits the mother but also, the baby. As a matter of fact, some chiropractors offer a holistic approach to health and wellness by offering advice about nutrition, exercise, and relaxation techniques.

You can now feel more confident about visiting a chiropractor throughout your pregnancy knowing that this type of care is perfectly safe. On the other hand, if you were considering the benefits of chiropractic care and whether to contact a practitioner, you now have more information to help you make an informed decision. And of course, you can also ask your obstetrician for some insight. All in all, combining both traditional and holistic medicine offers a safe and healthy route toward delivery day.

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Leslie Anderson
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Leslie Anderson is a freelance writer/writing coach from Roswell, N.M. She enjoys gardening, cooking, and helping students…
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