Preventing Back Pain for New Moms
Back pain during pregnancy is a common issue but generally clears up a week or two after delivery. Having an infant can cause new back pain to form, though. As a new mom (or dad) you’ll be picking up your 7-10 lb newborn up to 50 times a day! Since your baby is constantly growing, the weight strain will only get worse as time goes on. It’s important to establish good habits early on to ensure that you’re preventing back pain wherever possible.
Here are 5 areas you can focus on to avoid and improve back pain:
Talk to your doctor to determine when you can begin exercising after giving birth. New moms often benefit from stretching practices like yoga. It’s also helpful to work on strengthening the muscles in your neck, back, and core.
Do not bend over toward your baby to nurse. Instead, sit up in a straight-back chair (rather than a couch or other slouched seating) and bring the baby up to you. Use a pillow or two to help prop the baby into position.
Lifting the baby
The principle of lifting with your legs, not your back, holds true for your baby. When lifting your little one, crouch down, rather than bend over. Don’t extend your arms; bring the baby close to your body.
Holding the baby
Holding your baby on your hip puts an uneven strain on your back muscles and positions your pelvis out of natural alignment. Instead, consider using a front pack which keeps your baby close to you and evenly distributes the weight.
Putting the baby in the car
When putting your baby into his or her car seat, avoid standing outside the car and reaching in. Instead, sit in the seat next to the car seat while strapping your baby in. This helps prevent strain.
Settling into life as a parent is a fun and exciting time. Don’t let back pain slow you down. Keep up with your growing little one by putting simple and effective practices in place to minimize back and neck pain.
If you continue to experience back pain, it’s best to see an orthopaedic specialist. To see a back doctor at Orthopaedic Associates of St. Augustine, request an appointment online or give us a call today at 904-825-0540.
Casey McClone, MD
Board Certifications in Family Medicine and Sports Medicine. Dr. McClone specializes in treating musculoskeletal pain for patients of all ages with ultra-sound guided injections.