Physical Therapy During Pregnancy

Pregnant woman working on strengthening exercises.

Physical therapy for pregnancy

Are There Benefits of Physical Therapy During Pregnancy?

Are you or someone you know expecting a bundle of joy?  First, congratulations! Pregnancy is a beautiful experience!  It is amazing to see how our bodies change to bring a precious life into this world.Pregnant woman working on breathing exercises at home.

Even though there are many positives to pregnancy, there can be some mental, emotional, and physical exhaustion due to the rapid changes going on in our bodies.  An obvious change as we go through the trimesters of pregnancy is weight gain due to the enlargement of the uterus and the growth of the baby.  Due to the increased weight gain our center of gravity or balance changes.  This shift causes the lower back to arch and the shoulders to round so that we can’t easily maintain our balance while standing and walking.  The increased weight in the abdomen also stretches the abdominal muscles, which does not allow for adequate contraction. With pregnancy, there are also significant hormonal changes that cause ligament and joint laxity to prepare for labor.  You may be thinking, well isn’t all this obvious?  Yes! But what does this mean, and how can physical therapy help?

Postural changes can cause back pain during pregnancy and can last post-partum as well if not treated.  Physical therapy can help reduce back pain by addressing the following:

Pregnant woman doing seated stretch at home, showing the importance of physical therapy for pregnancy.Stretching and strengthening postural muscles and teaching you about postural awareness.

We will teach you stretches such as chest stretch, upper trapeziuses stretch, or shoulder blade squeeze.

Learn safe body mechanics with lifting (pre- and post-partum), sitting, standing, and transitional movements.

We will teach you proper pre- and post-partum lifting, proper body mechanics with sitting and standing, and how to move from one position most effectively to another such as getting out of a car.

Prepare the lower extremities for the demands of increased weight bearing.

We will teach you strengthening exercises, balance exercises, gradual progression, stretching, and about proper footwear.

Maintain abdominal function and prevent/correct diastasis recti (widening / separation of the abdominal musculature).

We will teach you about core-strengthening exercises, how to avoid straining proper posture, breathing exercises, and what exercises to avoid.

Strengthen muscles to prepare for labor and delivery.

We will teach you the proper way to do kegels, squats, lunges, pelvic tilts, cat-cow stretches, and more.

If you are having back pain while pregnant, don’t think that you must wait until after you have the baby to have relief of symptoms! Give us a call at Carolina PT and let us create a custom program that is right for you.

Carolina Physical Therapy North Charleston, SC location. Specializing in pelvic floor health.

Our North Charleston team specializes in pelvic floor therapy.

7800 Rivers Avenue, North Charleston, SC, 29406

Phone: (843) 277-0710
Fax: (843) 573-7412