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Back Pain Facts First-Time Moms Should Know

Posted by Krizza Macairan on

 


Back pain for First-time moms is regularity in a mother’s life and first-time mothers should be aware of what it brings. While motherhood is the miracle of life, with it comes a lot of pain, not just in terms of labor but also with the back pain that comes after (Spine & Orthopedic Center). Dealing with back pain is just one of the responsibilities that mothers would have to be accountable for.

 

 

First-time mothers are given the relief of having less back pain compared to those who already got pregnant with the extra weight they gained with their firstborn. It is more likely to worsen while taking care of the baby, especially since they are required to lift and carry their babies anytime and anywhere they need to. From lifting a baby weighing 7 to 10 pounds to a baby that weighs 15 to 30pounds. As the baby’s weight increases, the mother’s baggage also increases, which would require mothers to have stronger core strength. 

In addition to the mother’s weight and the increasing weight of the baby, there is also a possibility of the muscle losing control over their abdominal muscles and pelvic floor (White, 2016). Both help to stabilize the spine, and without them, it can be expected that the back will be affected. 

 



    Restoring Your Strength through Exercises

    After giving birth, it is relevant for mothers to renew their strength, especially with the sleepless nights and heavy lifting that comes ahead. Pelvic floor exercises, especially Kegel exercises. In fact, with the demand for childcare from mothers, it is necessary to work out daily.

    This is also recommended for mothers who underwent C-section as long as they had the go signal from their doctors.

    Kegel exercises include the contraction of the body’s pelvic floor. The recommended routine is contracting and holding it for 10 seconds for starters and acceleration to 30 seconds once comfortable and used to it. Repeat it for 10 to 15 times for effectiveness. 

     

    When to Call the Doctor

     

    While back pain may become a normalcy for mothers, it is also important to find out when it is needed to call and visit your doctor. There is also a possibility of back pain being an indication of a more serious problem.

     

    Some of the signs to look out to know when to visit the expert includes:

     

    • A weakness of the ankle and foot
    • Consistent and unrelenting fever
    • Immediate and surprising weight loss
    • Tingling and numbness of the feet and legs
    • Incontinence and other irregularities in bladder or bowel function
    • Increased nightly pains waking you up from sleep

     

    Helpful Tips when Managing Back Pain

     

    Dealing with back pain would require mothers to know some ways to avoid and treatments, especially when they need to do some heavy lifting every day. According to the University of Maryland Orthopedic Surgery clinic professor Alan M. Levine, mothers are required to lift their baby, weighing 7 to 10 pounds, 50 times a day. This just becomes more difficult as the child’s weight increases (Grayson Mathis, 2001).

     

    This is the reason why it is a must to learn about these following helpful tips:

    • Use a carrier or front pack rather than holding the baby on your hip
    • Do strengthening exercises to improve muscle strength (Starting from mild stretching exercises after birth)
    • Lift with your knees and not your back or spine
    • Try to get back to your healthy weight
    • Use the right posture when breastfeeding and carrying the baby
    • A hot and cold compress can help minimize your back pain
    • Using ergonomic pillows to support your back during breastfeeding or sleeping.

      

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    Work-related Back Pain: The Danger of Sitting All-day

    Posted by Krizza Macairan on

     

    A productive day can be quite fulfilling but it can all be spoiled if everything ends up with back pain. And who doesn’t suffer from one anyway? Back pain is a common incidence in the workplace (Voakes, 2014). From driving all day for Uber drivers to sitting and working at the office, sitting for a long time can result in back pain. 

    Working hard in the office is not a bad thing but not compromising one’s health. And yes, the simple act of sitting for a long time can lead to back pain. Some of the factors that can contribute to it are: 

     

    • Low-energy Lifestyle 
    • In Sedentary Positions for a Long Time 
    • Poor Posture 
    • Obesity & Unhealthy Diet 
    • Long-time Repetitive Movements 
    • Excessive Force upon the Back 

     

    Ways to Avoid Work-related Back Pain 

    With the rise of technology and device, more people are now less active and would opt to be sedentary. This ends up with uncomfortable back pain that you just can’t live for the rest of your life. The good news is that according to Cleveland Clinic Center Spine for Health and Cornell University researchers, you can make a few simple changes to get rid of the pain (Hall, 2014). And here are some of those ways: 

     

    • Design Your Workstation Strategically
    • Choose a with lumbar support on your lower back
    • Make mouse and keyboard reachable in your desk 
    • Stay Active (As much as you can) by Taking Frequent Breaks 
    • Mind Your Posture
    • Keep your head up o Plant your feet o Sit within reach o Position knees the right angle (90 degrees) o Breathe from your belly o Don’t cross your legs 
    • Don’t strain and squint 
    • Never Cradle Phone between Head and Shoulder 
    • Stand Up & Stretch Shoulders Every Now & Then 
    • Refine Daily Desk Routine to Be More Engaging 

       

      The Role that Proper Posture Plays in Back Pain 

       

      Poor posture can lead to back pain and this is a solid ending if you don’t do something about it. Proper posture, whether you sitting in your desk, driving, or standing, is important for managing one’s back pain (Triano, 2006). It is imperative to bear in mind that there are particular harmful situations that could lead to back pain and so must be avoided at all times, including: 

      • Repetitive & Frequent Awkward Stretching 
      • Prolonged Sitting & Other Static Postures 
      • Lifting Wrong: Lift with Knees Not Your Back

       

      Learning the right posture is prevention against back pain and being consistent with this posture is the key. A good posture is accomplished by following these instructions: 

      • Feet Slightly Apart (One foot slightly in front of the other)

      • Keep Shoulders Directly over Pelvis

      • Chest Out & Keep Head Directly over Shoulders

      • Tuck in Buttocks  

      • Tighten Core Abdominal Muscles 

       

      Avoiding Back Pains with Workplace & Office Ergonomics 

       

      People spend a lot of time at work and the majority of these office workers end up sitting all day, leading to back pain. According to Henderzahs-Mason (2018), one of the reasons that desk workers experience neck and back pain is because workers try to accommodate to their workstation and end up straining their bodies, compromising their posture. This is why it is important to redesign one’s workspace to promote a healthier posture. 

      More than just your salary, employers can be helpful if you want to make necessary adjustments for your workstation. Talk to your employer on the adjustments you need, from the placement of your workstations to your back-friendly office chair. The great news is that most employers today are now recognizing the fact that employees spend a lot of time sitting and would need to accommodate changes for a healthier setup. 

       

       

       

      Sources: 


      Hall, S. (2014). “12 Ways to Stop Work-related Back Pain”, Health. Retrieved from https://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20355520,00.html?. Viewed on 01 October 2019. 
      Triano, J. (2006). “Ergonomics of the Office and Workplace: An Overview”, Spine-health. Retrieved from https://www.spine-health.com/wellness/ergonomics/ergonomics-office-and-workplace- overview. Viewed on 01 October 2019. 
      Voakes, G. (2014). “The Painful Truth About Office Back Pain”, Huffpost. Retrieved from https://www.huffpost.com/entry/danger-of-sitting_b_4980482?ncid=engmodushpmg00000003. Viewed on 01 October 2019. 
      Henderzahs-Mason, J.M. (2018). “Sitting at your desk doesn’t have to be a pain in the neck”, Mayo Clinic. Retrieved from https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/adult-health/in-depth/sitting- at-your-desk-doesnt-have-to-be-a-pain-in-the-neck/art-20269947. Viewed on 01 October 2019.
       

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