Women’s bodies go through many stages, and each can come with its own discomforts. Spinal health and proper pelvic alignment can affect menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause. Here are five benefits of chiropractic care for women:
1. Less Period Discomfort
Three out of four women report experiencing symptoms of PMS. About 5 % of those women suffer from a severe condition called PMDD. Pelvic pain, back pain, mood swings, and gastrointestinal problems associated with PMS and PMDD can disrupt a woman’s daily life. The good news is, you don’t have to live with these symptoms.
Chiropractors treat subluxations in the vertebrae. A subluxation happens when vertebrae become misaligned or fail to move properly. Everyone experiences subluxations as a result of daily wear and tear. Your spinal cord–the nerve center for your whole body– runs through your vertebrae. Nerves branch off it to send signals to different organs and systems.
The nerves housed in your C1 vertebra (the first vertebra under your skull) control blood flow to the pituitary gland. The pituitary gland is a region of the brain responsible for many of the body’s hormonal signals. It secretes follicle-stimulating hormone, prolactin, luteinizing hormone, and thyroid-stimulating hormone, among others. Treating subluxations in the C1 vertebrae frees the nerves to work optimally. Healthier nerves= a healthier pituitary gland and better hormonal function.
The vertebrae at the other end of your spine also play an important role in gynecological and digestive function. Subluxations in the lower part of the spine can impair nerve signaling to reproductive organs and the intestines. As a result, you may notice more painful periods or IBS-type symptoms. In some cases, the pelvis can become tilted. This often happens as the result of a leg length difference or problems with spinal curvature. A tilted pelvis can cause problems during menstruation and pregnancy.
When you talk to your chiropractor about hormonal imbalance symptoms, they may take X-rays to look for spinal curvature problems. They will then recommend an initial course of adjustments to fix any significant problems, followed by less frequent maintenance treatments. Since chiropractors are holistic practitioners– meaning that they view the body as a whole system– they may also suggest nutritional or lifestyle changes.
2. A Safer, More Comfortable Pregnancy
A tilted pelvis can cause significant problems for the mother and baby during pregnancy. Many women don’t know their pelvis is tilted until after they become pregnant. The purpose of the pelvis is to support and protect the lower abdominal organs, including the uterus. When it is out of alignment, there may not be enough room for the expansion of the uterus during pregnancy. It can restrict the baby’s ability to move and make it difficult for the infant to assume a head-down birthing position.
A tilted pelvis can also cause more back pain during pregnancy. Even if the pelvis isn’t tilted, pregnancy puts a strain on the lumbar (lower) spine. As baby grows, the curve in the lower spine increases to balance the mother’s weight. As a result, many women experience back pain during and after pregnancy.
A licensed chiropractor has been trained to treat pregnant women safely. Chiropractic care during pregnancy can correct a tilted pelvis and help the spine adjust to your changing body. Women who receive chiropractic care during pregnancy are less likely to give birth prematurely and less likely to need a C-section. One study performed collaboratively by physicians and chiropractors found that 75 % of pregnant women experienced pain reduction after receiving chiropractic care. There is also evidence that spinal adjustment can reduce nausea and other uncomfortable pregnancy symptoms.
For moms about to give birth, breech positioning can be concerning. Sometimes the baby doesn’t turn to a head-down birthing position in the days before labor begins. The Webster Method is a chiropractic adjustment that has been clinically proven to correct breech positioning.
3. Fewer Menopause Symptoms
Menopause is a natural and inevitable stage of life for women, but it can bring uncomfortable symptoms. The most common are night sweats, mood changes, and sleep problems. For many women, these symptoms are severe enough to interfere with daily life.
Chiropractic care works for menopause symptoms for the same reason it’s helpful for PMS. By correcting subluxations in the spine, we free the nerves to work optimally. This leads to better brain function and hormonal balance. Most chiropractors will also recommend nutritional and dietary interventions along with spinal adjustment.
4. Stronger Bones
In addition to treating obvious menopause symptoms, using nutrition and adjustment to balance hormones can also lead to healthier bones. Osteoporosis often begins in menopause. Sex hormones play a role in the bone-building process. If your hormones are not in line, all the calcium in the world won’t strengthen your bones. A multifaceted approach that addresses hormonal changes and nutritional needs is the most effective way to prevent and treat thinning bones. Your chiropractor may also recommend exercises you can do at home to help strengthen your bones.
5. Better Balance
Older women often struggle with balance. This is a serious problem that can lead to falls and fractures. Spinal degeneration–the flattening and hardening of spinal discs, and problems with spinal curvature can affect your balance. Many older women also suffer from Kyphosis– a humped upper back. Severe Kyphosis can cause breathing problems and stiffness.
A chiropractic care plan can reduce your risk for balance problems and Kyphosis. If you’ve already begun having these symptoms, you can still be treated and prevent the condition from getting worse. Your treatment plan may include spinal adjustments, strengthening exercises, and posture rehabilitation.
Chiropractic Care for Women in Michigan
At Burkhart Chiropractic, we treat women in all stages of life. You don’t have to live with discomfort caused by hormonal imbalances. Schedule a consultation with one of our providers to see how non-invasive chiropractic care can help you achieve your wellness goals.