Breastfeeding & relaxin? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 09-28-2009, 07:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My 3rd baby is just over one year old, and I have been having recurring, painful tendonitis & ligament issues (in the wrist, ankle, and my SI joint seems chronically out of joint if you kwim). I have seen a chiro, and a few physios, all with no improvement. A couple of practitioners have mentioned to me that as long as I'm breastfeeding I'll have elevated relaxin levels and the tenonitis etc., will continue to be a problem. I've looked around and can't find any scientific articles/studies/evidence that this is true (that bfing means more relaxin). When I questioned them, they just said that was what they'd been taught, but they hadn't actually seen/read any studies. Wha? It's kind of annoying that they're passing on info that might encourage people to wean, with no direct knowledge that that might actually help.

Does anyone out there know? Not that I'm planning to wean, but if weaning could be a magical cure, then at least I'd have something to look forward to down the road! As it is, I'm fed up, and grumpy from being in pain all the time
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#2 of 9 Old 09-29-2009, 01:41 AM
 
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I believe it is true that you will have elevated relaxin levels as long as you are breastfeeding. I know personally I've been enjoying constant heartburn because of that same thing, and here I was so looking forward to that going away after I gave birth! ugh. I think that you will experience relief when you wean too. I was worried I was going to have heartburn forever, until I was informed that my body was still producing relaxin thus causing whatever it is that keeps the acid down to relax.
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#3 of 9 Old 10-14-2012, 08:08 PM
 
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if you have weaned your little one by now, can you tell me if it helped??  I have really terrible SI joint pain related to my hips and am breastfeeding.  Wondering if you ever found out about the relaxin. my little is three now and I'm avoiding weaning, but if it will help, I might do it.  thank you for your post and help!!!

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#4 of 9 Old 10-14-2012, 08:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi Danicat,

My daughter weaned about a year ago, just over three years old at the time. I did not find weaning to be a cure for my SI issues. I can tell you that the only actual research that I have found on relaxin says that it declines over the first six month post-partum period, regardless of breastfeeding or not. As far as what has helped, I have to say the thing that has helped the most is the "balancing exercise" from Cecile Rost's book, Healing Pelvic Pain (maybe you can find it at a library, but it is definitely available from amazon.com). Other than that, Pilates and Physio exercises have helped somewhat, but not for the long-term. For myself, the biggest difference came when I read the Rost book. I am not promoting it, just letting you know what worked in my personal case. I really don't believe that weaning is the answer, especially for people like you and me who are way beyond that initial post-partum period.

It really sucks, and I hope that you're able to find something that works for you!
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#5 of 9 Old 10-15-2012, 12:15 PM
 
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Thanks for the quick reply!  I've had hip pain for 21 years...just diagnosed as labrum tears from high school cross country running. The pain was pretty bad before, but if I didn't exercise, I didn't feel it as much.  Then, the pain got much much worse during pregnancy and hasn't really ever gotten back to the level of pre-pregnancy.  Now, I can barely walk.  Thank goodness our house is small because walking more than around the house is literally debilitating.

 

Thanks for letting me know it didn't change.  I think I will keep breastfeeding him...he doesn't want to wean and I don't want to wean him!  I just hope the docs aren't bullheaded about it once I start having the surgeries!!

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#6 of 9 Old 10-15-2012, 01:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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That's interesting, I have been told I probably have a labrum tear (as I had anterior hip pain prior to having children) - I just had an arthrogram to check for this last week. I think the hip pain and the SI pain definitely contribute to each other, but I have still had improvement (with both) in the last few months. I was even able to walk around London for hours sightseeing with my son this summer, when a few months before I couldn't even walk for 15 minutes. If the doctors or surgeons are insistent upon weaning, I personally would insist on seeing the research that backs up their position smile.gif
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#7 of 9 Old 10-16-2012, 06:00 PM
 
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the arthrogram will definitely clear up whether you have a tear!  Mine are posterior...so I have a constant pain the butt ;)  I can't walk without pain and after about 5 minutes, I start crying.  It is just too much.  I just have to wait until January for surgery (that's when my insurance kicks in).

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#8 of 9 Old 10-16-2012, 07:31 PM - Thread Starter
 
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That sounds brutal greensad.gif Best wishes for a successful surgery. I would love to hear your feedback about it after if you ever feel like coming back to update the thread. But hopefully you will be too busy living a pain free life to do that!
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#9 of 9 Old 10-17-2012, 01:14 PM
 
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pain-free would be AMAZING!!!!  yea for that!  :)

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