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Would Another Pregnancy Worsen my Backpain?

By: Jo Johnson - Updated: 18 Sep 2012 | comments*Discuss
Back Pain Physiotherapy Exercise Gp


My Backpain started 6 years back in the 5th month of pregnancy . The pain did not subside or even decrease after birth, and I suffer from it almost on a daily basis if I sit, walk or stand for more than an hour or two.

My son is now 5 1/2 years old and I have been thinking of a second baby, but I am put off by the idea of another pregnancy on top of the existing backpain. What is your advice?

(A.G, 6 October 2008)


Deciding to have a baby is a huge decision, not made any easier by having ill health or a bad experience in the past. Anyone with chronic back pain will understand how much of a big deal this is as pregnancy can make even the healthiest person feel stressed, exhausted and even unwell.

Many people with back pain do go on to have healthy pregnancies that aren't made any worse by the presence of back pain, or that they feel their back pain is made any worse by the change in shape and size, however you are wise to consider the implications and the effect it may have on you.

There are several ways in which you can help yourself before you even conceive. My advice would be to find some form of exercise that is designed to strengthen the muscles of the spinal and lower body, along with those of the pelvis and abdomen as this will help your body cope with the change in posture and weight that comes with pregnancy. Swimming and yoga are ideal for targeting these areas and are good for those with chronic or recurrent back problems as they tone and strengthen the muscles more gently than other forms of exercise. As you have a very obvious back problems that already negatively affect your life it is probably worth booking onto a session or individual session with a professional who will educate you on the best way of approaching exercises.It is assumed, due to the length of time you have suffered, that you have had a thorough examination and assessment to determine the cause of your back pain, but if not it is important to get this checked out as it may be something easily treatable.

Once you have done this for six months it is probably worth speaking to your GP or a physiotherapist who may be able to advise you on the types of equipment that may be used during pregnancy and in the presence of back pain as aids such as specially designed back supports may be useful. If you do conceive it is vital that you tell your midwife and/or obstetrician as they may well decide top bring the baby on earlier if it is safe as this will help prevent a large baby putting more pressure on your back. It may also be safer to have a Caesarian section if permitted as a long and arduous labour can put even more stress on the back and associated structures.

It is great that you would like to share your life with another child and very sensible to consider all the implications and it is strongly advised that you seek professional help and advice either from a midwife, your GP or a physiotherapist who will be able to better prepare both you and your body for any eventualities that may come with pregnancy.

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