If you’re pregnant and have been experiencing pelvic pain during normal activities like walking or rolling over in bed, you’re not alone! Pelvic pain during pregnancy is very common, and you may have a condition known as Pubic Symphysis Dysfunction, which can develop at any point during a pregnancy.
As we’ll discuss below, physical therapy for pelvic pain is an essential part of prenatal and postnatal pain management. Find out what you can do to relieve pelvic pain during pregnancy today.
The hormone relaxin is secreted by the corpus luteum early in pregnancy. Its function is to break down collagen in the pelvic joint and prepare it for delivery. Looser joints and softer muscles—along with the altered pelvic load of pregnancy—can cause pelvic misalignment, which can then develop into pelvic pain during pregnancy.
A diagnosis of Pubic Symphysis Dysfunction is often made on symptoms alone, in part to avoid unnecessary imaging techniques (although your doctor may recommend a pelvic x-ray or MRI after pregnancy if you’re still experiencing symptoms at that time).
The most common symptoms of Pubic Symphysis Dysfunction include:
Pelvic pain during pregnancy usually resolves after giving birth, but you can relieve pelvic pain now. Many people choose to start a specialized course of physical therapy for pelvic pain for a more comfortable pregnancy.
Physical therapy for pelvic pain involves strengthening the pelvic floor muscles to correct the misalignment of the pelvis that is causing the problem. Your physical therapist may use soft tissue mobilization and massage techniques during your visits and will work with you on strength-building exercises to improve support of the pelvic girdle. They will also show you stretches and positional techniques that are designed to reduce pain as you approach your delivery date, which you can continue to perform on your own at home as needed.
It’s possible to enjoy your pregnancy more and live with less pain, even into your third trimester! Reach out to an IMPACT Physical Therapy facility near you and find out how physical therapy for pelvic pain can help you build strength and reduce pain. You can find us in downtown Chicago, the southwest suburbs, and Champaign-Urbana. Request an appointment or virtual visit if you’d like to learn more today.