Why are postnatal assessments so important?

Pregnancy and child birth are life changing experiences which can have a huge impact on a woman’s body.

A lot of new mothers believe that changes are inevitable and that they may need to live with them for the rest of their lives. As a result, they often feel anxious and uncertain about the effect that postnatal health problems can have.

That’s why at Physiomove, our specialist physiotherapists can provide detailed postnatal assessments to determine how pregnancy and delivery has affected the mother’s body and what can be done to rectify any issues that are found.

Our assessments, which can be carried out from six weeks postpartum onwards, check for postnatal problems including abdominal muscle separation (Diastasis Recti), musculoskeletal aches and pains including pelvic, hip and back pain and pelvic floor weakness, which may lead to pelvic organ prolapse or incontinence issues.

The aim of the assessment is to create a tailored postnatal programme, which is designed specifically to suit each individual depending on their needs, lifestyle and goals. This programme may include specialised postnatal exercises to improve pelvic and core strength and stability and to rectify any muscle imbalances within the body.

We will also be able to determine whether any other specific treatment is required, such as acupuncture, breathing, electrical stimulation and relaxation techniques or manual therapy, including massage stretching and joint mobilisation.

During the assessment, we can analyse altered breathing patterns, usually caused by changes in hormone levels during pregnancy and by the internal changes caused by the growing uterus, and determine how to help return these to normal.

Resuming exercise or taking up any new form of exercise after the birth of a baby without fully understanding the changes within the body has the potential to do more harm than good and can have a detrimental effect on long-term health. And when trying to care for a newborn, we know this worry is the last thing a new mother will need.

The assessments therefore are an important way of enabling us to provide advice about when it is safe for our patients to return to exercise or sports, or when they can begin to work towards other lifestyle goals whilst ensuring their bodies are able to heal.

By equipping mother’s with knowledge of how their body has changed during pregnancy and childbirth, they are able to take control of these changes and set themselves on the path to recovery. This can have a hugely positive impact on their overall emotional and mental health and well-being, allowing them to enjoy the time with their new baby without worrying about their own health.

For more information about our postnatal physiotherapy assessments or to book a session with one of our specialists, visit our contact us page for ways to get in touch.