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Pregnancy and Posture

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A good posture is an important part of healthy pregnancy. This is because of the effects pregnancy has on the alignment of one’s body. Pregnancy maintains a healthy body posture when standing, sitting, semi-reclined, lying on your side, and when lying on your back.

When a woman is pregnant, different things happen that work against having a correct alignment. This is because one, as the center of gravity moves forward, the baby’s weight causes the lower back to sway. And as the baby grows, the abdominal muscles become stretched, making the muscles less able to contract and keep the alignment of the lower back right. Also, the level of hormones in the body increases during pregnancy causing the ligaments and joints to loosen. However, the increased low back curve can be counteracted by straightening the upper back to ensure that the hip, shoulder, and ear are aligned. The pelvic tilt can as well be used to tuck the pelvis.

A healthy posture can be maintained while standing by:

  • Avoiding high heels and putting on low heeled shoes because high-heeled shoes cause the weight of the body to shift forward even more;
  • Ensuring the lower back does not sway forward by maintaining the pelvic tilt always;
  • Wearing a maternity support belt;
  • Changing standing position often;
  • Keeping the chin tucked in because the shoulders and the ears should be in a straight line;
  • Creating a natural “corset” for the lower back by contracting the abdominal muscles and buttocks; and
  • Sitting on a high stool as this will reduce the lower back’s sway.

A healthy posture can be maintained while sitting by:

  • Not crossing the legs while sitting as this can reduce circulation;
  • Sitting into a chair so that the chair will support the thigh’s length;
  • Avoiding slouching and maintaining the pelvic tilt; and
  • Sitting in a way that ensures that the hips and the knees are on the same level.

A healthy posture can be maintained while semi-reclined by keeping the knees bent and elevating the head using stack pillows

A healthy posture can be maintained while lying on your side because it gets rid of the stress of the lower back without affecting blood flow to the placenta and your baby. A healthy posture can be maintained while lying on your side by:

  • Giving your back support by placing a pillow behind you;
  • Supporting the weight of the uterus by placing a pillow under the abdomen; and
  • Reducing low back strain and supporting the weight of the top leg placing a pillow between the legs.

A healthy posture can be maintained while lying on your back by elevating the head and placing a pillow under the knees to keep it bent.

Tips for Lifting and Bending

  • When reaching out for low objects, spread the feet with the foot ahead of each other while bending your knees.
  • When you want to move an object, push it. Also, use the legs and not the arms or back.
  • Never bend with your knees straight.
  • Role to the side when getting out of bed, and push away using your arms.
  • When getting out of a car, turn the back, pelvis, and hips in one direction to keep a straight back.