What is Pelvic Girdle Pain? Get great guidance from new Resident Osteopath at Shine, Newington Green, Elodie Bridelance.
Pelvic girdle pain that you can find writen under PGP is a pregancy discomfort that causes pain, instability and limitation of mobility in any of the three pelvic joints* (sacro iliac joints and/or pubic symphysis)
PGP is not harmful to your baby, but it can cause severe pain around your pelvic area and make it difficult for you to get around.
How can I know if I am suffering from PGP?
There is a variety of symptoms experienced by women with PGP including :
- Present swelling and/or inflammation over the joint.
- Difficulty lifting your leg.
- Pain pulling your legs apart.
- Inability to stand on one leg.
- Inability to transfer weight through pelvis and legs.
- Pain in the hips and/or restriction of hip movement.
- Transferred nerve pain down the leg.
- PGP can be associated with bladder and/or bowel dysfunction.
- A feeling of the symphysis pubis giving way.
- Having a stooped back when standing.
- Malalignment of pelvic and/or back joints.
- Struggle to sit or stand.
- Pain may also radiate down the inner thighs.
- Waddling or shuffling gait.
- Audible ‘clicking’ sound coming from the pelvis.
- Pain when getting out of the car
What is the origin of this discomfort ?
During the pregnancy the body of woman experiences enormeous changes : hormonal and physical. However, sometimes the body has difficulty to adapt with these physiological modifications and therefore some tensions and pain can appear most of the time around the pelvis area.
Reminder of the two changes:
During the pregnancy the body secrete the relaxin hormone. Its mission is to make your ligaments stretchy so your baby can ease his or her way into the world. But sometimes relaxin does its job too well, making the ligaments around your pelvic bone during pregnancy too loose too soon (way before baby is ready to come out), and that causes instability (and unfortunately, pain) in the pelvic joint or in the pubic symphysis.
Physical change : modification of curves and weight
The baby’s growth implies a gain of weight which is more or less important for every woman and at the same time a change of curve : accentuation of every curve but especially the lumbar lordosis.
Thus, the centre of gravity is modified, all muscles, ligaments need to coordinate and finally the pelvis which is the support of the spine tries to rebalance the new tensions. Nevertheless, sometimes the body can’t find a good compromise between stability (support for the baby) and mobility (streching of ligaments for the next childbirth) that is why pubic symphysis pain and/or sacro iliac pain can occur.
Notice that even if the PGP is often find during the pregancy, women can experience this discomfort after the childbirth. In fact, every structures (ligaments, muscles) are strecthed and weak and therfore an instability of the pelvis can appear and create pain.
Can Osteopathy help me with this kind of pain?
By regiving a general balance of your body, osteopathy can help you to deal with the pelvic girdle pain.
In fact, using different soft techniques (muscular, fascial, cranio sacral) the osteopath will find a balance between the anterior part (uterus/baby) and the posterior part (spine/pelvis) that are not well coordinated.
Moreover, testing the different part of the body, the ostepath will be able to diagnose and treat all the general tensions that have been present before the pregnancy and that have increased the pelvis pain.
Finally, the osteopath will harmonize the ligaments’ tension around the uterus that pull on the sacrum or on the pubic symphysis, with gentle and soft external techniques and thanks to these techniques, will restore good mobility and prevent a worsening of the pelvic pain.
As a conclusion, the osteopathy treatment could help you to have a more comfortable pregnancy and childbirth.