Ask a Naturopath – Pregnancy

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I’m 6 months pregnant and my back is aching. I’m scared it’s only going to get worse. What can I do?

You are correct, your back pain will no doubt get worse as your baby grows, but that  doesn’t mean you have to live in pain for the whole of the next 3 months. Gentle yoga with a pregnancy specialist can be extremely helpful. Gentle water based activities where you immerse yourself helps takes the weight off your spine and can provide both relief and strength to the muscles. Try swimming in the sea or salt based pools and avoid chlorine if possible.

Back pain is also the perfect excuse for a massage and a bit of pampering. At Moontides ,we offer pregnancy massage and also provide a workshop on how to massage your baby, which is a really great way to help the bonding process.

How can I avoid a weak bladder after pregnancy and giving birth?

Pelvic floor exercises during the whole pregnancy will help to prevent post partum (post birth) incontinence. You can do these exercises at anytime without anyone even knowing, simply tighten the muscles, as if you are trying to stop urine mid flow, hold the muscles tense for a count of 5 and then release.

Repeat this often throughout the pregnancy and following the birth. In fact pelvic floor exercises throughout life will help to prevent incontinence at any age. For more help with pelvic floor exercises contact Kylie and the team at Lifecare Pilates at the Prahran Market.

I’m 8.5 months pregnant and I can’t get comfortable at night. I’m not getting enough sleep to cope during the day. Please help.

Fatigue is a real problem during pregnancy, particularly in the first trimester and last trimester and I cannot stress the importance of getting as much rest as you possibly can whenever you possibly can. I know it is not always easy to take time out from a busy life, but wherever possible engage the help of your partner, older children family members or friends.Turn off your mobile and put a note on your front door if that’s what it takes to get some time out.

If you need to nap during the day do it. If you need to go to bed by 7pm to get enough rest, do it. Discuss your needs with your employer and consider finishing your day a bit earlier or starting later when possible.

At night, try placing a pillow between the knees to help take the pressure of joints and bones that may be aching under the extra weight. Long body pillows are also available and can help in the same manner. Relaxation massage may help as can a relaxation CD or the use of meditation and/or self-hypnosis techniques.

I’m due to give birth in the next couple of weeks. I know breast feeding is best for my baby, but I’ve heard it can be painful and complicated, do you have any advice, this is my first child.

It is true that breast is best, however it is also true that while most are fine, some women have great difficulty breastfeeding. If you are wanting to breastfeed the first thing you will need to do is relax, that will help with your milk flow. If pain is a problem, one of the most commonly used remedies is to place cabbage leaves over the breasts. The cabbage leaves are cooling, soothing and help to draw out milk. Some women find relief from warmth applied to the area, while others find that an ice pack helps. If your apply creams or lotions to your breasts, it’s really important to ensure they are not toxic to your baby, or that you wash your breasts thoroughly before baby’s next feed.

Breast pain with redness, swelling, raised body temperature and flu like symptoms requires medical attention from your doctor or naturopath.If you are still concerned, a midwife can often help, call us at Moontides today to speak with a Midwife.

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