From the time a woman conceives to a year after delivery, her body experiences a wide variety of physical changes.
These changes can include muscle weakness and shortening, postural imbalances, and ligament laxity. A combination of these may result in problems like back or pelvic pain, incontinence, constipation and difficulty breathing.
Most of these conditions go away on their own after delivery, but some may persist. The difference often comes down to prenatal (before delivery) care. When a woman understands and tends to her body during the prenatal time, she can optimize her postnatal (after delivery) recovery and improve her ability to look after her baby.
Physical therapy can play an essential role in helping a woman manage the physical changes that occur during pregnancy and after delivery. Physical therapists provide important education about musculoskeletal changes in the body, hands-on treatment, and the development of home programs to reduce or eliminate pain, optimize physical functioning, and enhance quality of life. Below is a list of commonly performed physical therapy treatments:
- Relaxation Training
- Postural Re-education
- Joint Mobilization (often of the pelvis)
- Balance Training
- Breathing Techniques
- Manual Therapy
- Strength Training
The following prenatal and postnatal conditions are routinely treated with physical therapy:
Learn more about our treatment options on these pages