Therapy for pregnant women
Indications for the procedure
BACK PAIN – ESPECIALLY IN THE LUMBAR AREA
MUSCLE TENSION IN THE SHOULDERS, NECK
SWOLLEN ARMS AND LEGS
NUMBNESS OF THE FINGERS
PAIN RADIATING FROM THE BUTTOCK TO THE LOWER LIMB
STRESS URINARY INCONTINENCE
PAIN IN THE KNEE AND HIP JOINTS
There is no doubt that there are huge changes in the female body during pregnancy. At the same time, pregnancy is one of the most beautiful moments in life, which is why every woman should take care of herself and her future baby. During the nine months there are a number of changes that aim to provide the best conditions for the developing foetus.
Changes in the body of a pregnant woman
The uterus is one of the organs that undergoes the greatest changes. It grows into a “muscle bag” weighing 1000g and having a capacity of 5 liters.
Its initial weight is up to 70g. The uterus, in turn, forces changes within the pelvis, which must adapt to the size of the developing foetus. This is possible primarily due to the action of sex hormones and relaxin. They increase the elasticity of the connective tissue. The pelvis is also distinguished by greater mobility, especially in the pubic symphysis and sacroiliac joints.
Changes can also be observed within the locomotor apparatus. Due to the increase in the weight of the uterus, the curvature of the spine increases and the center of gravity shifts. These changes can often be the cause of increased tension within the ligaments and muscles, which provokes pain, pain radiating to the extremities, feeling tiredness and stiffness.
Ailments of pregnant women
Pregnant women can suffer from various ailments. The most common ones include:
- back pain – especially in the lumbar area
- muscle tension in the shoulders, neck
- pelvic pain
- swollen arms and legs
- numbness of the fingers
- pain radiating from the buttock to the lower limb
- stress urinary incontinence
- pain in the knee and hip joints
Physical activity in pregnancy
Physiological pregnancy does not require restrictions on moderate physical activity. As confirmed by various scientific studies, the efficiency of a pregnant woman is at the same level as in the period before pregnancy. In the period between 25 and 32 weeks there is an increase in cardiac output and blood volume. Lung ventilation increases. These conditions are conducive to regular physical activity, which aims to reduce various ailments.
Many pregnant women face various problems. Contractions, swelling in the lower extremities may appear. Developing pregnancy also affects body posture. The setting changes the pelvis, which adversely affects the lumbar spine. Another problem may be increasing muscle stretching in the abdomen.
Thus, a carefully selected activity that will be focused on improving body statics is of key importance. The therapist introduces active exercises in full ranges, exercises to make the abdominal muscles more flexible, as well as spinal muscles, breathing and stretching exercises. They are selected depending on the possibilities and previous physical activity. Exercises during pregnancy are aimed at:
- restoring or maintaining full range of mobility in the joints
- stretching soft tissues within the pelvis, lower limbs and spine
- improving body posture
- strenghtening weaker muscle groups
- cardiovascular stimulation
Therapy of pregnant women
The first stage is a detailed consultation. Therapy for pregnant women is designed to properly prepare for delivery, improve pelvic mobility in various positions, strengthen pelvic muscles during pregnancy, and reduce back pain.
The most common types of therapy include:
- pubic symphysis split therapy
- pelvic floor therapy
- spine therapy
Pregnant women are exposed to a variety of ailments due to the changes that their body is undergoing. Most often they suffer from backache, pelvis or lower limb problems. It is important to be aware of factors that may disturb the proper functioning of the locomotor system. The introduction of specialised exercises by the therapist reduces pain symptoms. Therapy for pregnant women is primarily focused on regaining proper mobility in the joints, as well as reducing increased muscle tension. An additional advantage is the correction of body posture.
The procedure is performed by
Katarzyna Maliszewska – physiotherapist
Master's degree in physiotherapy and manual therapist. A graduate of the Medical University of Lublin. Already during the MA studies she cooperated with the Association dealing in the therapy of children with extensive neurological dysfunctions and related developmental disorders.