This month’s post for the health and wellness series is from Polly Hand, Chiropractor and Owner of Chiropractic by Hand
Top Tips for Mummy Back Care
Running a practice in South West London- particularly the centre of Nappy Valley (Balham) – we see LOTS of pregnant women, babies and new mums, and to be honest it’s no surprise really!
Growing and carrying a baby, and then looking after a new baby/ toddler/ small child is no mean feat, and it’s particularly tough on the body in many ways- so that’s where we come in.
So we’ve compiled a list of tips covering the most common causes of the issues we see in clinic – and how you can avoid pain and discomfort at such a physically demanding time….
Be kind to yourself
First and foremost- be kind to yourself! After giving birth in any way – vaginal, c-section, instrument assisted, ‘straight forward’ – appreciate that your body has been through a LOT. Muscles, ligaments, joints, tendons, cells – they’re all affected and need to heal. Your body uses a lot of energy to carry out this healing. Even if you’re feeling sluggish and itching to exercise, do NOT rush in to it. Get out and walk with baby when you feel ready to, and don’t forget that simply lifting and carrying your new bundle you are building strength too.
Before going back to higher intensity exercise it’s advisable to get checked over by a body worker that specialises in post natal care- so a Chiropractor or Osteopath, Physio, Women’s health physio, personal trainer etc. They can then advise you of what you should start with.
I can’t stress enough how important this is! Every single cell in our bodies requires water to function. Dehydrated muscles get tight and sore. Feed them! This is particularly important if you’re breastfeeding – your body is producing more fluids than ever!
Always carry water with you when out and about, and when sitting down to feed, make sure you have a bottle of water next to you that you can easily reach and take regular sips from. A sports type cap is often ideal so that you don’t need to remove a lid etc.
If you’re bottle feeding, make sure to alternate the side that you hold baby-this will decrease the chance of you creating imbalances in your back and neck muscles, but it’s also good for baby- it’s important they turn their neck both ways and it helps develop both sides of their brain also.
This also goes for carrying baby and older children- be aware not to always carry on the same side/ hip. Try slings, back carriers, piggy backs, front holding- experiment!
Bend your knees
Remember to protect your back when lifting children, car seats, buggies etc . Always be aware of bending your knees to lower yourself instead of just hinging from the waist and bending your back.
Polly Hand is a Chiropractor and Doula based in Balham and South West London. She has a passion for helping people achieve optimum health through chiropractic and healthy living. In March 2013 she set up Chiropractic By Hand.
Polly has a special interest in all things pregnancy and baby-related and likes to take a holistic approach to each and every patient, ensuring patient-centred care. She enjoys a busy paediatric base due to her gentle technique approaches, Cranio-Sacral techniques and applying her knowledge gained from her work as a Doula.
Chiropractic By Hand offer FREE Parent and Children posture and spinal checks, and Clapham Mums get 25% OFF your First Visit.
Address: 63 Balham High Road London SW12 9AP