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What Are the Benefits of Physiotherapy in Pregnancy?

Autumn Rivers
By
Updated May 17, 2024
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Pregnancy is known for changing a woman's body quite a bit and, while most transformations are necessary during this time, some of the negative changes can be managed with physiotherapy. This focuses on keeping the muscles and joints of pregnant women in good shape, which can be beneficial in several ways. During pregnancy, physiotherapy can reduce aches and pains while reducing bladder leakage. Women also may notice benefits during labor and delivery, because experience with physiotherapy may help them during the pushing phase of labor. Staying active while pregnant also can have postpartum benefits, because keeping the muscles in shape can help women return to their pre-pregnancy figure quicker than they otherwise might.

During pregnancy, there is a lot of pressure placed on the joints, muscles and bones of the body. This often leads to pain in the lower back and neck, and even the arms and legs can become uncomfortable because of the nerve compression caused by weight gain. In most cases, physiotherapy in pregnancy can strengthen the muscles while also helping the joints feel more flexible. Even the bladder can be made stronger through certain exercises, which may lead to more control and, thus, less urine leakage during pregnancy. The result is that women who take advantage of physiotherapy in pregnancy can feel more comfortable and in control of their body despite the major changes taking place.

Women who opt for physiotherapy in pregnancy also can benefit during labor and delivery. For example, having strong legs and abdominal muscles, as well as endurance, often can help women deliver their babies without complications. Having strong pelvic floor muscles also can help deliver the baby fairly quickly, because this area of the body typically is used for pushing during labor and delivery. As a result of various physical changes, a woman's abdominal muscles often become too stretched out to feel contractions properly, which can lengthen the duration of labor. Undergoing physiotherapy during pregnancy often can help reduce this issue so labor goes a little more smoothly.

A woman's body usually takes some time to return to its regular shape after pregnancy, but utilizing physiotherapy in pregnancy may speed the process. One notable benefit is that the pelvic floor muscles can be exercised during pregnancy so, after the baby is born, the bladder is more likely to return to normal. Many women who do not undergo physiotherapy while pregnant have bladder leakage for years, especially when working out or making any sudden movements. In addition to helping to prevent this problem, undergoing physiotherapy in pregnancy can keep the muscles in the entire body in shape so that losing weight after the birth is a little more manageable. Despite its advantages, one should not attempt physiotherapy during pregnancy without a doctor's consent and qualified supervision to minimize any risks.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Autumn Rivers
By Autumn Rivers
Autumn Rivers, a talented writer for WiseGeek, holds a B.A. in Journalism from Arizona State University. Her background in journalism helps her create well-researched and engaging content, providing readers with valuable insights and information on a variety of subjects.
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Autumn Rivers
Autumn Rivers
Autumn Rivers, a talented writer for WiseGeek, holds a B.A. in Journalism from Arizona State University. Her background in journalism helps her create well-researched and engaging content, providing readers with valuable insights and information on a variety of subjects.
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