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How to Prevent Back Pain Caused by Holding Your Baby

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Back pain as a new parent is one of those things no one tells you about.

Experienced moms will tell you horror stories about your labor and how your body will sag and stretch in the wrong places, but no one tells new moms how physically exhausting a baby actually is. Back pain is a common complaint from new moms and dads the world over.

The good news is there are several ways you can relieve your pain, improve your posture, and prevent future back problems caused by carrying your baby.

1. Rest

It’s not easy to find a moment to rest when you’re taking care of a newborn, but you need to slow down. If you’re not well, how will you take care of your baby? Take some time for self-care and don’t get back to your daily routine too quickly.

2. Ask for help

Cesarean section is major abdominal surgery and requires time to heal. Your doctor will follow the progress of your healing throughout the process. Wait at least 6 weeks before you return to work or your usual exercise routine.

3. Pain Relief

Mild back pain responds favorably to over-the-counter pain relievers. Be sure to inform your doctor (and Baby’s pediatrician) before taking any medications if you’re breastfeeding. In the event that an over-the-counter medication doesn’t relieve your back pain, inform your doctor.

4. Heat or Ice

Heat or ice helps relieve pain. It may also help to soak in a bathtub. Ensure your doctor okays baths if you had a cesarean section birth.

5. Massage

Some back pain is caused overworked muscles. Getting a massage from your partner also helps you bond.

How to prevent back pain from happening

  • Standing for long hours at a time puts pressure on your back. If you can sit with your feet elevated even better.
  • Do not bend at the waist but rather squat by bending your knees. Lifting car seats and strollers will become a way of life so ensure you use proper technique.
  • When  breastfeeding, bring your baby to the breast instead of leaning forward. Use pillows if you need to adjust your positioning and sit in a chair with a firm back.
  • Bring the baby to your chest before lifting. Lifting with outstretched arms causes injury to the back.
  • When buckling car seats, kneel in front of the seat. Standing outside the car and bending is an awkward position that may contribute to your discomfort.
  • Before beginning any new exercise regimen, consult your doctor. Start gradually with gentle exercises for a few minutes. Exercise rebuilds muscle and helps you improve posture.
  • The extra weight you are still carrying after giving birth may also be contributing to your back pain. Overweight individuals are at a higher risk of health problems and more frequent incidences of back pain.

Other than frequent diaper changes and sleepless nights, the physical challenges of taking care of a baby are mostly unexpected. Without proper care, holding your baby for hours every day will result in back pain.

Do you experience back pain consistently as a new parent? How do you relieve it?

 

First published at www.livestrong.com

Featured image source: www.parents.com

Leah

Founder at LetuKenya
Leah was born and raised in Kenya. She has a degree in psychology and divides her time between article writing, blogging and creating original African pieces. She provides her writing services independently and can be found odesk. When she isn’t hunched over a computer, she’s out being inspired by nature.

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