Today manifestations of osteochondrosis are quite possible in quite young women, including during pregnancy. Often, for the first time, women experience back pain due to changes in the spinal column when carrying a baby. This may be due to weight gain, growth of the uterus, or changes in body proportions, forward center of gravity, as well as many other factors. Discomfort in the form of headache, dizziness or numbness of hands bother the expectant mother, often these problems do not go away even after giving birth, requiring treatment.
Osteochondrosis during pregnancy
The basis of the pathology is a degenerative-dystrophic process in the area of intervertebral discs. During pregnancy due to increased loads on the spine, the process is prone to progression and the formation of exacerbations. Although this pathology is not dangerous for the fetus, it does not in itself affect its development, its exacerbation can significantly complicate the pregnancy itself for the expectant mother, disrupting health, causing unpleasant symptoms and complicating habitual activities. In addition, the presence of osteochondrosis can negatively affect childbirth, as well as the possibility of pain relief in them.
With the pain experienced by a woman with osteochondrosis, anesthesia is often necessary, and the range of drugs that do not affect the fetus is very limited. Therefore, they try to actively treat pathology during pregnancy, using all possible means – local, non-drug, physiotherapy, physical therapy.
What provokes exacerbations: excess weight, hormones, activity
Exacerbation of osteochondrosis in pregnancy is quite often, especially if the manifestations occurred earlier, the pathology has a chronic progressive course, and the woman does not use any methods that prevent relapses. Among the provoking factors that can provoke an exacerbation may be the excess weight gained by the end of the gestation , especially if the woman was complete before the conception.
Due to the growth of the uterus and changes in the anatomy of the internal organs, the center of gravity changes, the back flexes forward to maintain stability. Often, overweight comes due to changes in nutrition and reduced physical activity, especially in the second half of pregnancy. They can be provocateurs of exacerbation of changes in hormonal levels, deficiency of mineral compounds and vitamins, infections and abnormal posture that the future mother had before.
A likely cause of back pain is also the wearing of uncomfortable shoes and work in a sitting position, stress, and an improperly organized place to sleep. It is important to take into account all these provoking factors, especially if there is unfavorable heredity in this pathology in the family, in order not to gain excess weight and not to provoke exacerbations due to other factors.
When are back pains possible?
Usually, a woman may notice the first discomfort from the second trimester; as the abdomen grows, discomfort may occur in the lower back, thoracic or cervical area. Since the second half of gestation , back pain is possible, especially severe in the lumbar region. It relieves certain postures and prolonged rest, wearing a bandage or sleeping on one side. The most typical back pain in lumbar osteochondrosis is disc and vertebral deformities, pinching of the nerve roots or irritation of muscle fibers with ligaments. Often the exacerbation is so pronounced that it significantly limits mobility and requires immediate intervention to stop back pain. The defeat of the thoracic and cervical regions are rare, with their back pain is not so characteristic and painful, the associated symptoms are more pronounced.
Dizziness, malaise, headache
If before pregnancy there was cervical osteochondrosis, against the background of pregnancy its course may be complicated and intensified. Because of the deformation of the vertebrae and discs in the neck, the blood circulation of the brain suffers, which causes headaches and dizziness.This is due to impaired blood flow in the vertebral artery pool. The defeat of the thoracic region can lead to intercostal neuralgia, impaired breathing and simulating cardiac pathology.
Often dizzy with osteochondrosis women take for signs of toxicosis or low blood pressure without going to the doctor. At the same time, for osteochondrosis, a combination of vertigo with noise in the ears and numbness of the fingers, pain in the shoulders and the back of the head, and visual impairment is typical. Pressure fluctuations, migraines, chest pains may also occur.
Problems in recent weeks and in childbirth
Often exacerbation of osteochondrosis, especially when it comes to the lumbar region, may occur in the last months of pregnancy or before childbirth. Arising back pain, especially in the area of the sacrum and lower back, can lead to a sharp restriction of mobility, forced position of the body.Shooting may occur – acute pain, extending into the groin and thigh, combined with burning and numbness, cramps in the lower limbs and tingling, crawling. Against the background of pain, a woman does not sleep well, rushes about in bed, cannot take a comfortable position. Childbirths on the background of osteochondrosis can be complicated, because of pain and limited mobility, a woman cannot assume a posture that facilitates contractions, and the inflammatory process in the lumbar vertebrae and discs makes it impossible to facilitate labor due to epidural anesthesia.
In the treatment there are also difficulties, doctors prefer to do with local treatment and non-drug measures so that the drugs do not affect the fetus. For severe pain, ibuprofen and diclofenac only very short courses or occasionally (up to 32-34 weeks). Typically, local forms of anti-inflammatory drugs are permissible in pregnancy – ointments and gels with these drugs, warming drugs, patches. It is shown wearing a bandage, partially relieving the spine, as well as carrying out exercise therapy and massage in the first half of pregnancy. All appointments and monitoring of the treatment are carried out by a doctor, no drugs and external means can be used without his permission.