Almost everyone will experience back pain, discomfort, and soreness at some point. Moms, however, are more susceptible especially during pregnancy as the back supports the weight of carrying a growing fetus. The birth of a child also causes trauma to the human body while childcare once the baby is born can strain a mom’s back as she carries the baby and finds little time for rest.
Some moms might experience intense or sharp back pain following an injury, a misstep, or a wrong movement, which then heals after a couple of weeks. Others might have back pain as a chronic condition, which then affects their ability to do tasks, get to work and enjoy leisure time with the family.
There are, however, plenty of ways to reduce back pain and lower the risk among moms.
New Moms: Back Pain Management
Maintain a Good Posture
One of the leading causes of back pain is poor posture. The way you sit, stand, sleep or walk can weaken and stress your back, and you might not even be aware of the incorrect position or movements. Moms who habitually bend, slouch, and hunch put more stress on their body that will bear impact over time since the spinal muscles, joints, and ligaments are not properly aligned. For essential lower back support and to facilitate proper back alignment, consider wearing a back brace that’s specially designed for women.
Here are some tips on how to maintain a good posture:
- At least 24.9 percent of moms in a study reported back pain while breastfeeding. To ease this problem, always choose a comfortable seat with proper back support. Put a pillow on your back so that you won’t have to lean forward, hunch or slouch towards the baby. Change your position if your back starts to hurt.
- Taking and putting the baby in the crib. Be aware of how you bend towards the crib. Your feet should be wide apart and your knees should be slightly bent.
- Taking and putting the baby on the floor. Always bend your knees or squat if you’re picking up or putting your baby down on the floor. Bending over, especially with the baby’s increasing weight, will definitely strain your back.
- Carrying your baby. A stroller is a great convenience for parents because you don’t have to carry a growing baby all the time. If a stroller is too bulky, use a front pack and carry your child either facing you or facing outward.
- Using infant car seats. This baby equipment is quite heavy, more so if the baby’s on it. To avoid stress on your back, set the infant car seat inside the vehicle first and then strap your baby on. Don’t carry the seat to the car with the baby already strapped.
Experts say that inactivity worsens body pain, hence regular exercise is important for a healthy back. Should moms, however, still exercise when they’re already exhausted and stressed from tending to the family’s needs?
Exercise actually helps moms fight off tiredness or lethargy. You’ll feel a lot more energized when you do your chores because exercising improves your body endurance. Some moms have problems with losing or maintaining weight despite being up and about all the time. Doing regular exercises helps keep the body fit and in shape. It also helps with postpartum depression.
- Ask your doctor first. If you’ve just given birth, make sure to talk to your doctor about when you can start exercising. You might need to lessen physical activities for at least six weeks if you’ve had a Caesarean section.
- Start slowly. Do simple routines first if you haven’t been exercising for a while. Start with doing 10 minutes of stretches and 20 minutes walking around the neighborhood twice a week. You can gradually increase the time and intensity of your exercises. Include core strengthening routines to improve your back.
Take a Break or Rest
It’s necessary to take a break from your chores as a mom for your mental and physical well-being. A few hours off to yourself will do wonders. Tell your husband and kids you need the break, especially if you’re experiencing back pains. When resting in bed, avoid curling up because it will only hurt your back.
- Warm bath: Take a hot shower or a warm bath to loosen the tight knots and improve blood circulation in your body. Immersing your body in heat is an age-old therapy technique. Be careful, however, not to make the water piping hot as it can increase heart rate, cause excessive sweating, and dry out your skin.
- Studies have proven that a body massage is an effective treatment for chronic back pain. Aside from back pain relief, a massage also helps improve sleep, which means you’ll get more rest, and provides relaxation that boosts your mood.
Read more: Health Benefits of Sitz Bath for New Moms
Consult your doctor if your back pain recurs or doesn’t go away after four or six weeks as you might have unknowingly caused an injury on your back. A doctor can properly tell how severe your injury is and advise you on what to do next.