Help...Chiropractor just told me to stop wearing my baby! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 20 Old 02-09-2010, 06:07 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I need help! My chiropractor just told me I need to stop wearing my baby and I am so discouraged. My 7-month-old son is 23-pounds (off the growth charts) and high-need. We've been applying AP principles from day one. I've worn my little hoss in a wrap or Ergo several hours a day from birth.

But my chiro is right about one thing: my back is an absolute mess. I'm having a lot of headaches from neck and shoulder strain, and every part of my back hurts in one way or another (i.e., tender, tight, strained, loss of mobility). At the same time, I'm unwilling to stop wearing my son. I love the benefits that both of us get from being so close, and honestly, somedays babywearing is the only thing that gets us through the day.

Any suggestions for a different type of carrier or way of carrying? I wear my son on the front in the wrap and on my back in the Ergo.

Thanks!
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#2 of 20 Old 02-09-2010, 07:50 PM
 
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I would recommend trying a mei tai. I have a Kozy and I can wear ds (15 lbs) for hours very comfortably on the front (haven't tried him on my back yet). I have troubles with neck/shoulder/back pain and headaches, and the ergo-style carriers and slings really aggravated that. But I have had no troubles with the MT, I love it!!

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#3 of 20 Old 02-09-2010, 08:32 PM
 
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Are you sure you have the ergo adjusted correctly? All his weight should be distributed to your hips and not pulling on your shoulders or upper back. I have a ton of back problems too, but I can wear my 27lb DD on my back for hours with no pain.

Carrie~ wife to Ryan, and finally mama to Emmery (1/15/09) via IVF after 3 1/2 years TTC!
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#4 of 20 Old 02-09-2010, 09:28 PM
 
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If you are BF, you may want to listen to your chiro. You may still be getting a lot of relaxin in your joints. It sounds not AP to post here, but I slinged and nursed my dd until I could no longer walk. Having back surgery and hip replacement would we worse for your parent/child relationship than a stroller. I trully hope you are no where near the level of discomfort that I was when my daughter was 25#. There are other ways to be close.

If you are BF, I think you should ask chiro if it could be affecting your joint integrity. What I'm talking about has nothing to do with core strength, or peace of mind but actual ligament length.

I don't normally read this forum but please PM me if you want more info.

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now 18 months post hip replacement (dd is 7) and doing better
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#5 of 20 Old 02-09-2010, 10:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks, all, for your insights.

I'm definitely going to look into the mei tei carriers. I, too, have felt that the majority of my back and neck pain has stemmed from the Ergo. And the mei tei appear to be a better option for hip carry as well.

I've had an Ergo-expert help me adjust my Ergo and it has still caused pain and strain whether I have my son in the front or back carry positions. The back carry position is a little better, but it's still causing me to hunch forward. I failed to mention that my 23-pounder is 20% of my body weight. I'm very petite and recently learned that "backpack rules" say that you're only supposed to carry 10% of your body weight on your back.

I'll check into the relaxin thing as well. Very interesting idea. I'm certain my back pain isn't to the point of needing surgery. I've always had a strong back and done strength training. I think the pain I'm experiencing is a combo of carrying my hoss son around all day and not being able to strength train those muscles the way I did pre-mommy-hood. But the relaxin idea may be part of it because he is still exclusively breastfed.

Thanks again to everyone for the info...helps to know I'm not alone!
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#6 of 20 Old 02-10-2010, 11:57 PM
 
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funny thing - I'm a physical therapist, but I'm having a lot of the same pain as you!

I've been toying with how high I wear my babe and I think it makes a difference. I don't have a mei tai, but usually wrap high on my back (so baby can see), but I find I round/hunch more. Today I tried wearing him lower and I felt I was able to keep my posture more erect. Less pain.

When I hunch it's worse. And I find I hunch when I wear him in the front, too. So maybe try adjusting your position?

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#7 of 20 Old 02-11-2010, 01:17 AM
 
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I find that now that my ds is over 20lbs i have to switch carriers every once in a while so that the weight distribution is slightly different/posture changes.

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#8 of 20 Old 02-12-2010, 12:55 AM
 
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I had headaches and neck/shoulder pain if I wore my daughter too long.

I started doing handstands against the wall for other reasons shortly after she turned one... and happened to notice that it became much much easier to wear her for longer periods of time, even though she was getting heavier.

I did only 2 min once or twice a day. And my little girl started doing them too... so cute!
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#9 of 20 Old 02-12-2010, 02:13 PM
 
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I think that our bodies are made to wear/carry our babies but that bc of lifestyle (no physical labor every day) we aren't as strong as we used to be.

Def try those core strengthening excercises that you used to do. Even a few minutes a day will help. Rotate carriers like a pp suggested so that the weight isn't always distributed in the same place.

I know it's tempting to strap the baby on and go, go, go but take a break and just sit down w/ your baby every once in a while if you can (it's hard I know!).

Hope you feel better!

Wife to dh, Mommy to ds1 12/2002, ds2 9/2005, and ds3 9/2008.
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#10 of 20 Old 02-12-2010, 03:47 PM
 
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break up the amount of time in one stretch that you are carrying your little one; stop before pain. limit the amount of front carries as they are harder on your back.
another option is a new carrier the chunei distributes weight really well :http://www.hosausa.com. it's like a vest that the baby sits in. i haven't tried it but a friend really likes it.

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#11 of 20 Old 02-12-2010, 05:31 PM
 
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I would say take a break and take care of yourself first for a month or two. Really your baby will be OK. This kind of repetitive stress can really mess you up long term if not taken care of. Try yoga, physical therapy, different types of stretching and excersices to work on your back/neck issues for now. Try and wear your baby way less than you would. It's like on an airplane, they always say you put your oxygen mask first then help your baby. You HAVE to take care yourself so you can be the best mom you can!!!
Good luck!

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#12 of 20 Old 02-14-2010, 02:35 PM
 
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DS is 23 pounds at 8 months, I have a Boba and love it! virtually no back pain, but i dont wear him for hours on end.. make sure it is adjusted right...

Mama to Cameron 6/03/09
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#13 of 20 Old 02-15-2010, 07:07 PM
 
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I would avoid a hip carry as that puts strain on one side of your body, forcing the other hip and the opposite shoulder to over-compensate for that strain. Also a good carrier really should not be causing a lot of pain. If you have the opportunity to try different carriers, brands and styles, I would do that. Have you tried yoga as well? Just some thoughts!

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#14 of 20 Old 02-15-2010, 08:14 PM
 
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As much as I love the Kozy, I don't see any way that it's going to be better for carrying a 23 pound baby than an Ergo. It's got much less padding and doesn't transfer baby's weight to your hips, and my guess is that you're not going to find relief that way.

What kind of wrap do you have? If it's a woven wrap, have you tried using that for a back carry? I'd stop with the front carries especially since you're so petite, as front carries with heavy babies are much harder on the body than back carries.

I hope you can find some healing! I definitely think some PT/strengthening might be helpful.

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#15 of 20 Old 02-17-2010, 02:57 PM
 
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You might need more core strength, I was sore and having issues with my son (20 pounds at 3 months!) and when I started doing yoga and more core strengthing work it helped a great deal.

I used wraps and MTs.

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#16 of 20 Old 03-07-2010, 07:33 PM
 
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Well, it won't necessarily get better if you don't babywear because you will probably end up holding your baby in your arms or on your hip anyway!

Yes, what type of wrap do you have?

Also, your LO is 7 months right? Honestly, they grow so fast those first few months that your body has a hard time keeping up with the weight gain, but that will taper off as you grow stonger.

I think the answer is not to stop babywearing, but maybe try out some different carriers. You could try a different SSC, a mei tai, a half-buckle, a woven wrap. My personal favorites are Kinderpacks, Bloo Kangaroo, Kindercarry, Storch wraps. I do have an Ergo, and it's ok, but I don't think it is for everyone.
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#17 of 20 Old 03-07-2010, 07:37 PM
 
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I'm wondering if a chunei (a torso) carrier might work better for you.... the weight isn't on your shoulders or on your hips, but is carried by all of your torso.
http://www.hosausa.com/
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#18 of 20 Old 03-07-2010, 11:02 PM
 
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If your wrap is a woven wrap, a really good back carry that provides a lot of support is the Double Hammock/Chunei back carry. I have also heard that some mamas with bad back pain do well with just a simple torso carry (like one would use for a kanga).
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#19 of 20 Old 03-08-2010, 09:56 AM
 
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A few tips in this thread

Christina, Mama to Salvador (3 yr) & Santiago (6 mo)! www.footprintsbaby.com Life has gotten too busy - Come shop our going out of business sale! Cloth Dipes & more.
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#20 of 20 Old 03-10-2010, 12:43 AM
 
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Your chiro may be right, but if you have access to another chiro with a specialty in pregnancy, mothers, and children, I'd so recommend a second opinion. I was going to a chiro for almost two years after babywearing for a year, when it just stopped helping, and yet he just kept doing the same thing. When he had another guy substituting for him, that guy told me, kind of rudely, that I'd simply be in pain until I stopped picking up my son so much. And at that point, I wasn't even carrying him very much. (That guy wrecked me, by the way.) Anyway, I started doing cranial-sacral with my naturopath, and that helped a lot, but didn't get it all. And now I'm preg again and seeing a chiropractor who specializes in pregnancy, and it's like night and day. She's been doing stuff that makes a lot more sense, and I finally feel almost all better. Also, she's been working on a thing in my spine that's messed up from nursing, not babywearing. Something to consider.


I hope you can find a good solution, whether or not you quit baby wearing!

Yours in backpain...
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