BACK PAIN DURING PREGNANCY - WHAT CAN YOU DO ABOUT IT?

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Back pain is a common complaint for many women during pregnancy and may occur as early as your first trimester. As your uterus grows, your abdominal muscles stretch out to accommodate your developing baby and belly, and as a result your abdominal muscles become weaker. As your belly enlarges, your center of gravity shifts forward, which puts tremendous stress on your spine. Additionally, there are normal hormonal changes that loosen your ligaments and relax your joints in preparation for the delivery of your baby. All of these factors, not to mention the additional weight you're carrying around, can lead to spinal and pelvic pain as well as tight and achy muscles. 

While lower back and pelvic pain during pregnancy is completely normal and typically no cause for concern, it can be extremely frustrating and distracting, often making is hard for you (and sometimes your partner!) to sleep at night, making your days long and tiring. For some women their back pain may escalate into sciatica (pain that travels into the hip and down your leg). 

During pregnancy, there are very few medical interventions that are considered safe when it comes to dealing with pregnancy related back pain and sciatica symptoms. If your typical response to aches and pains is to grab the bottle of Aleve and go on with your day - that's not happening while baby is on board! That doesn't mean you have to just live with the pain, though. Chiropractors trained in the Webster Technique are competent care providers who know how to safely and effectively treat your pregnancy related back and pelvic pain. 

Dr. Pierce uses not only the Webster Technique to treat pregnancy related back pain, but will also spend time manually treating the tightened muscles around your spine, hips and pelvis causing pain, but educate you on exercises, stretches and daily habits that will help reduce your pain and in many cases eliminate it completely - and naturally. Many patients also benefit from the inclusion of acupuncture and/or trigger point dry needling to treat their back pain during pregnancy. Acupuncture, provided by a qualified provider is safe during pregnancy and can be extremely beneficial for pain and stress relief, pregnancy induced nausea and may help you sleep more soundly. 

What is Dry Needling and what is the difference between Dry Needling and Acupuncture? 

 

WHAT IS DRY NEEDLING?

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Dry Needling is a treatment technique where thin filiform needles are inserted through the skin into pathological areas of the muscle known as "trigger points" for the purpose of relieving myofascial pain and muscle spasm. These are the same needles used in traditional acupuncture therapy, they are solid rather than hollow, and no medication is injected.

Dry needling is used in conjunction with other manual therapy techniques and therapeutic exercise.

When performing dry needling, there may be a "twitch response" where the specific band of muscle involuntarily contracts in response to insertion of the needle.  Beneficial effects can occur without elicitation of the twitch response.  Sometimes electrotherapy is also applied with the trigger point needling technique, this is referred to as electroacupuncture. If electroacupuncture is considered appropriate, small clips are attached to specific needling locations and a mild electrical current is applied. Electrical muscle stimulation aids in stimulating blood flow, reducing pain and relieving muscular spasm. 

In the State of California, the only providers who can legally perform these types of needling techniques are licensed acupuncturists and medical doctors. A licensed acupuncturist's education and training in needling techniques requires a Master's degree obtained after 3 years of education and training. 

Compared to Dry Needling, Acupuncture, when applied as a form of traditional Chinese medicine, uses acupuncture points on the surface of the body that are located along "meridians" that correspond with the internal organs and the energies associated with those organs. Traditional acupuncture techniques aim to relieve congestion of energy and blood, thereby restoring circulation and reducing symptoms associated with said qi (energy) stagnation. 

Electroacupuncture and Trigger Point Needling for Pain Relief

Electroacupuncture is the the beautiful union of an ancient healing art and modern medicine. 

Electroacupuncture is the application of electrical impulses to acupuncture needles with the goal of enhancing the needles' therapeutic benefit. Electroacupuncture is often utilized to treat acute and chronic pain conditions. Acupuncture, dry needling and electroacupuncture modulate pain signals in the brain by stimulating endogenous opioids (endorphins), increase blood flow to the area of treatment, decrease muscular tension and encourages the body's natural healing mechanisms. 

Electroacupuncture, performed by a qualified provider is a safe and effective treatment option for conditions such as:

  • Lower back pain
  • Neck Pain
  • Shoulder injuries
  • Knee arthritis (and other injuries)
  • Tennis/Golfer's Elbow and More

To find out if acupuncture, dry needling and/or electroacupuncture can help you, call or make an appointment at our Newport Beach chiropractic and acupuncture office today! 

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Copy of Webster Technique in Newport Beach

Dr. Pierce offers the Webster Technique in her Newport Beach office! Webster Technique is a chiropractic technique specifically developed for pregnant patients who want to enjoy a more comfortable pregnancy. This technique uses gentle hands on therapy to address imbalances in pelvic alignment and improve pelvic mobility to promote a more optimal delivery. The Webster Technique is aimed at treating not only pelvic (bone) alignment, but goes a step further to treat round ligament tension and pubic region pain. 

Dr. Pierce treats pregnant patients in her Newport Beach office using the Webster protocol as well as acupuncture therapy and simple gentle home exercises. To find out if you are a good candidate for treatment please contact the office! 

Copy of Can Chiropractic Help With Headaches?

Got Headaches?

Chiropractic adjustments, combined with physical therapy exercises, massage, acupuncture and postural improvement can make a world of difference for those suffering with headaches! 

If you or someone you care about suffers with headaches, chiropractic and/or acupuncture may be just the thing to help them reduce headache severity and frequency! 

To read more about how chiropractic may help with headaches CLICK HERE!