Thursday, June 26, 2014

Prenatal Discomforts - Pubic Symphysis Dysfunction



Pelvic girdle pain is the term used to describe a variety of common prenatal pelvic discomforts.  One type of pelvic girdle pain is called  
Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD).

A small percentage of pregnant women experience SPD, a hyper mobility or misalignment of the symphysis pubis (see diagram above). SPD usually presents as a shooting pain in the pubic bone.  Other women experience it as more of an ache.  SPD is a relative contraindication to exercise during pregnancy.  In other words, your healthcare provider may suggest that you reduce or stop exercising.

If you have SPD and your healthcare recommends that you continue exercising:
• Choose low or no impact cardiovascular exercise like aqua fitness or the recumbent bike
• Avoid exercises that require opening your legs
• Avoid engaging your inner thigh muscles
• Include ‘hands and knees’ exercises that take pressure off of your pelvis.  Ex. Cat
• Talk to your HCP about a referral to a physiotherapist or chiropractor
• Talk to your physiotherapist or chiropractor about a support belt. 
• Prioritize healthy weight gain. Excessive weight gain may cause extra strain on the symphysis pubis.  

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