Baby Got Back (Pain)

What happened when I finally saw a chiropractor in my third trimester

I have always been a worrier. As far back as I can remember, I have felt nervous about trying new things. Anything from taking a trip someplace new to taking a new medication was enough to make me bite my nails.

This trepidation kept me from seeing a chiropractor when it was first recommended to me nearly five years ago. I was expecting my first child and started suffering from uncomfortable tailbone pain near the end of my pregnancy. But I just couldn’t bring myself to let someone push and yank and crack my bones.

Growing bellies don't come without side effects!

Growing bellies don’t come without side effects!

For the past four years, my husband has begun regularly seeing Dr. Zach Westrick of Westrick Family Chiropractic. I watched his once debilitating migraines become less frequent, and his back and neck pain reduced. Still, for four years I was too scared to try it.

My second pregnancy brought far more back and tailbone pain than my first. My doctor assured me that the pain was normal, though uncomfortable, and suggested I try a heating pad. I even ordered a fashionable and not-at-all-embarrassing wedge pillow for my desk, which brought hardly any relief. Finally I decided that enough was enough.

My husband encouraged me to sit in on his adjustment to ease my worries. In that time, Dr. Westrick listened to my concerns and assured me that chiropractic care was both safe and beneficial during pregnancy. Then, he explained why I was experiencing pain. Increased weight on the spine and forward distribution of weight puts more pressure on the low back. As the pelvis widens later in pregnancy, it changes how the joints in the area move and causes the discomfort I was experiencing.

I finally decided to make my first appointment. And guess what? It helped! My husband got to say “I told you so!”

When I arrived at my first appointment, Dr. Westrick again listened to my concerns and thoroughly explained his approach, and how chiropractic care can help with pregnancy and other conditions. In the age of electronic medical charts and increased pregnancy do’s and don’ts on the internet, it was refreshing to have a one-on-one conversation about my discomfort and concerns. Still, the appointments take just about 20 minutes, and I feel immediate relief. After just one appointment, I was more comfortable sitting in my car, and had very little tailbone pressure or pain throughout my work day. I continued to feel relief at my second and third appointments, and can happily say that I am nearly pain free when sitting. I am so happy that I was able to find relief without taking Tylenol – and that I could retire the wedge pillow from my office.

I have noticed other benefits, too. I am no longer waking up at night with terrible leg cramps, and feel less discomfort when walking and bending over. I have also read that regular chiropractic care can actually help get the baby in the right position for delivery and help the body and nervous system work more efficiently. (Here’s hoping!)

I know that different treatments work for different people, and am certainly not suggesting a silver-bullet solution for back pain. But this second pregnancy has been noticeably harder than my first (ok, I’m older, I get it), and I am glad that I finally decided to try something new.

For those considering chiropractic care, here is a list of providers recommended by the MMB team:

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