I'm discovering the other not so pleasant side effect of being pregnant, along with the hormonally-driven emotional rollercoaster effect: hideous back ache.
My lower back has been crippling me recently, and even though I'm only four months pregnant I'm already finding it very uncomfortable indeed to pick stuff up from the floor or to sit for long periods of time. The boyfriend is doing an excellent job with the massage oil, but I may need some heavier duty help quite soon.
One possible aid that's come to my attention, squarely due to a press release landing in my inbox, is the Bowen Technique. Teacher and practitioner Jo Lunn explains how the Bowen Technique can help ease aches and pains during pregnancy. I'm passing on her advice here, though please be aware that I haven't tried the Bowen Technique, nor am I advocating this as opposed to other aids.
Please do your own homework too, and don't forget to consult your doctor or midwife.
Jo Lunn writes:
What is the Bowen Technique?
The Bowen Technique is a gentle hands-on therapy that enables the body to work at optimum health. Rolling type moves are made with the thumbs and fingers on muscles, tendons ligaments and fascia bringing tension release through connective tissue and the nervous system and restoring the body's natural healing ability. It promotes pain relief, recovery of energy and functionality to the body.
When a gentle Bowen move is made a profound effect occurs in the body. The brain is focused onto that part of the body and begins to ask questions as to the state of health that area is in. The body responds by sending the answers to those questions to the brain via the nerves. The brain is then able to work out exactly what state the body is in and what is required for it to gain optimum health. The brain then sends the appropriate response to the body, for the body to correct itself.
The unique benefit of the Bowen Technique is that the body is given the opportunity to correct itself. By bringing tension release throughout the body with the Bowen Technique, tension and imbalances are prevented from building up and thus the body is in its optimum state.
A further unique benefit of the Bowen Technique is that it can be received through light clothing, lying on one side, sitting up or even standing, thus ensuring the mum-to-be's comfort at all times. The treatment is very gentle and can be performed on newborns through to the elderly.
How does it help during pregnancy?
During pregnancy the Bowen Technique plays an important and integral role. As the mum-to-be's posture changes throughout her pregnancy, the spine and pelvis are vulnerable due to the stresses from carrying her unborn child.
Pregnancy can create problems and exacerbate existing ones. By ensuring that the pelvis is correctly aligned through the pregnancy this will help to alleviate back pain and sciatica as well as tension in the shoulders and neck
It will also help ensure that there is no restricted blood flow to the baby and uterus and neural pathways are unhindered to the uterine and pelvic area during the pregnancy too. This will help alleviate digestive problems such as constipation, haemorrhoids, acid reflux etc. Correct alignment to the pelvis is also very beneficial for giving birth.
Jo Lunn is a Bowen Technique Teacher and Practitioner. She teaches the Technique across the UK with the European College of Bowen Studies, and works from her clinic in Malvern Worcestershire and the Hale Clinic, London. For more information please visit: www.bowentechniquetraining.co.uk