The Benefits of Physiotherapy for New Mums
On Monday 23rd April 2018, the eyes of the country were watching the steps of the Lindo Wing at St Mary’s Hospital London, waiting for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge to emerge and introduce their new baby boy to the world! As with her previous two post-birth baby debuts, Kate was styled to perfection and looked a picture of health and happiness.
While pregnancy and childbirth can bring about the feeling of great joy, it can also be incredibly hard on your body which is why it’s incredibly important for Kate and other new mums to do simple exercises and begin to form healthy habits to best cope with the many changes to their body and prevent future problems. While Kate probably has a team to help her that doesn't mean the average new mum needs to face this on her own. Our physio's are able to help you with simple exericses and tips to help you take care of your post pregnancy body...
Take care of your pelvic floor muscles
It is just as important to continue strengthening your pelvic floor muscles post-birth as it was when you were pregnant. Strengthening your pelvic floor is key in helping bladder control. Ask your midwife or physiotherapist for advice on how long to wait before getting started on these exercises, as this will vary depending on the type of birth you had.
The great thing about pelvic floor exercises is that you can do them anywhere, when you’re at home watching TV or out about. You will simply need to:
- Squeeze the muscles around your front and back passages
- Squeeze up and inwards
- Relax for 5 seconds
- Repeat 10 times
If at any time you feel any pain consult a physiotherapist or your midwife for advice.
Strengthen your Back
New mothers are at higher risk of back injury as they are likely to be bending and lifting more than they were previously.
There are some simple things you can do to look after your back such as:
- Keeping a good posture
- Avoiding holding your baby on one hip
- Kneel or squat when doing low level tasks, such as bathing your baby, rather than bending over and straining your back
- Avoiding lifting heavy objects.
There are also numerous exercises that you can do to strengthen your back, a physiotherapist will be able to take you through these exercises showing you how to perform them correctly to avoid injury.
Regain the strength of your Abdominal Muscles
Strong abdominal muscles will help to prevent lower back injury and help you to regain a flat stomach. Don’t rush to start doing sit-ups, hold off from these for at least 8 weeks after the birth, a physiotherapist will be able to take you through exercises that will gently build up your abdominal muscles showing you how to perform them safely. One exercise to try is the pelvic tilts, to do this you will need to:
- Either stand, sit or lie down, with your knees bent and feet flat
- Flatten the curve of your lower back by tilting your pelvis backwards
- Hold for up to 5 seconds
- Repeat between 5 to 10 times
At the Physiotherapy Clinic we appreciate that caring for your new baby can leave little time for much else especially a physio session. This is why our physiotherapists will show you simple exercises that you are able to squeeze into your new lifestyle.
For a friendly chat with our team please feel free to give us a call on 01707 329 910