Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction
During pregnancy, a woman’s body undergoes numerous changes to accommodate the growing fetus and prepare for the birthing process. One notable change that occurs is the spreading of the hips, which is essential for the successful delivery of the baby. The symphysis joint, located at the front of the pelvis, plays a crucial role in this process. It is a cartilaginous joint that connects the two pubic bones.
As the body prepares for childbirth, the symphysis joint opens up to an inch during labor. This temporary separation allows the pelvic bones to flex and widen, creating more space for the baby to pass through the birth canal. While this natural process is crucial for a smooth delivery, sometimes the symphysis joint fails to come back together properly after childbirth. This condition is known as Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD), also referred to as Symphysis Pubis Disorder.
Incidence and Occurrence
SPD is most commonly observed in multiparous women, which means women who have had more than one pregnancy. The repeated stress on the symphysis joint from previous pregnancies can contribute to the development of SPD in subsequent pregnancies. The additional strain placed on the joint during each pregnancy can make it more challenging for it to return to its original position, leading to persistent pelvic pain and instability.
Apart from multiple pregnancies, several other factors can increase the risk of developing SPD. Women who are overweight or obese are more prone to experiencing this condition due to the increased pressure on the pelvis. Weak abductor muscles, which are responsible for moving the legs away from the midline of the body, can also contribute to the development of SPD. Additionally, women who are generally not in great physical health during the late stages of pregnancy, typically between weeks 32 to 35, may be more susceptible to this disorder.
Causes and Symptoms of Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction
Symptoms of SPD can vary in severity and may include pain and discomfort in the pelvic region, lower back, hips, or groin area. The pain may worsen with activities that involve weight-bearing or movements that require the legs to be separated, such as walking, climbing stairs, or getting in and out of a car. Some women may also experience a clicking or grinding sensation in the pelvic area.
Managing Round Ligament Dysfunction
Chiropractors can guide women in the instance supportive devices like maternity belts or pelvic support braces are appropriate. Our doctors are trained to know when support is needed and when special movements are more appropriate. Braces provide external stability to the pelvis and alleviate pressure on the symphysis joint during daily activities. These supportive aids can offer relief and support while the healing process takes place.
Lifestyle modifications also play a crucial role in managing Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction. Our chiropractors are able to provide additional guidance on maintaining a healthy weight through proper nutrition and regular exercise, as excess weight can exacerbate the strain on the pelvic joints. Low-impact activities such as swimming, prenatal yoga, or stationary cycling be also be complementary recommendations based on the individual severity of SPD.
Our team at New Spring Chiropractic approach pregnancy and post-partum care with other practitioners when appropriate. Our mission is to help the mother heal as quickly and comprehensively as possible through coordinated management of the condition
Chiropractic for Round Ligament Pain
Fortunately, there are approaches to managing and alleviating the symptoms of SPD. The team at New Spring Chiropractic understands the unique challenges faced by pregnant women and is dedicated to providing them with the tools they need to make informed choices for their bodies and pregnancies. Chiropractic care, in particular, can be beneficial in addressing the musculoskeletal imbalances associated with SPD.
Chiropractors specializing in prenatal care can utilize gentle, non-invasive techniques to restore proper alignment and function to the pelvic joints. By employing specific adjustments and movements tailored to the individual’s needs, chiropractors can help reduce pain, improve mobility, and enhance overall pelvic stability. Additionally, they can provide guidance on posture, body mechanics, and exercises that can be performed safely during pregnancy to support optimal pelvic health.