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“Oh, My Aching Back!”: Pregnancy and Back Pain

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It's a Thursday night and my husband is working late. I am eight months pregnant with our third son. Our other two are jumping from couch to couch in the living room. I am so tired that I can’t stop them. All day, my back has been killing me.

I scan the floor for possible safety hazards. None. So the jumping is fairly safe with the exception of breaking a bone if they fall. It is not their first time. They are expert couch jumpers. I decide it is an OK time to fetch my home shiatsu back massager.

My back has been suffering this entire pregnancy. I hobble like an old woman to the hall closet and reach for the massager inside of its box on an upper shelf. Still bent over and holding my back with my right hand, I make my way back to the living room where the wild children are. I set up the massager in our stuffed leather recliner. I plug the cord in the outlet and sit back into the chair, ready for some pain relief.

It just feels good to sit down. I have resorted to turning on a cartoon to settle my kids down. As I reach for the remote and start their show, they sit like angels on the couch, hands in their laps and silent. Ahh, mommy time. I close my eyes as the kneading starts at the back of my neck. The pressure is hard enough to give me goose bumps but soon my muscles relax and it begins to feel good. The mechanism moves up and down my back and neck and I finally feel myself breathing deeper and slower. I even try to block out the sound of “Diego” playing on the TV in the background.

I am so relaxed that I could forget that I am sitting in my living room and imagine myself getting an actual massage. I am in a quiet spa with peaceful waterfalls and aromatherapy. A Brad Pitt look-alike massage therapist is rubbing my muscles and taking away the pain. SUDDENLY, my daydream is interrupted by a small person that has just come over to ask me for something to drink, noticed the massager and is now climbing behind me to see it, pulling my hair in the process.

My at-home massage is short lived. Maybe I can ask one of the boys to run a toy car down my back instead.

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EmpowHER Guest

Back pain is a nightmare at any time, but my particular sympathy goes out to mums-to-be. Given that you're keeping a blog you obviously spend some time on the computer. Whilst I wouldn't claim to be able to offer a miracle cure (we'll leave that to the alternative therapy people!) you might like to try my award-winning PostureMinder software. It helps you to remember to think about your posture and taking regular breaks whilst using your computer, which helps to treat and prevent back pain. Could be worth a try. There's a free 30-day trial download on my website at www.postureminder.co.uk
All the best
Dr Phil

July 29, 2009 - 3:20am
EmpowHER Guest

I had horrible sciatica with both my daughters. It started during the first month and lasted until the very end. I lived for my chiropractor appointments and begged my husband for backrubs daily.

July 28, 2009 - 5:39pm
EmpowHER Guest

I too had horrible back pain in my second pregnancy...I tried massage, rest, and a chiropractor and hoped the pain would go away after delivery only to have it get worse...then I went to physical therapy for three months and I'm all better now, whahoo!

July 28, 2009 - 12:36pm
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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.