About the Prenatal Webster Protocol
Chiropractic care benefits all aspects of your body’s ability to be healthy. This is accomplished by working with the nervous system–the communication system between your brain and body. Doctors of Chiropractic work to correct spinal, pelvic and cranial misalignments (subluxations). When misaligned, these structures create an imbalance in surrounding muscles and ligaments. Additionally, the resulting nerve system stress may affect the body’s ability to function optimally.
The Webster protocol is a specific chiropractic sacral analysis and diversified adjustment. The goal of the adjustment is to reduce the effects of sacral subluxation/ SI joint dysfunction. In so doing neuro-biomechanical function in the pelvis is facilitated.
Dr. Larry Webster, founder of the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association (ICPA) discovered this adjustment as a safe means to restore proper pelvic balance and function. This specific sacral analysis can be used on all weight bearing individuals to determine S/I joint dysfunction and is therefore applicable for the entire population. Common symptoms include (but are not limited to) low back pain, sciatic neuralgia, and symptoms associated with S/I joint dysfunction.
In regards to pregnant mothers, Dr. Webster reported that when a mother sought care and her baby was in a breech position, the restoration of pelvic neuro-biomechanics with this adjustment also frequently facilitated optimal fetal positioning. There are cases published in the chiropractic literature that support his theory. More research is needed and is currently underway by the ICPA.
In this clinical and theoretical framework, it is proposed that sacral misalignment may cause the tightening and torsion of specific pelvic muscles and ligaments. It is these tense muscles and ligaments and their aberrant effect on the uterus which may prevent the baby from comfortably assuming the best possible position for birth.
The obstetric literature has determined that correct positioning of the baby in-utero affects birth outcome and decreases the potential for undue stress to the baby’s developing spine and nerve system. Obstetric literature has also determined the importance of pelvic neuro-biomechanics for the prevention of dystocia (difficult birth).
Chiropractic literature has determined the significance of sacral adjusting in normalizing pelvic neuro-biomenchanics. It is therefore considered prudent that this specific sacral analysis and adjustment be used throughout pregnancy to detect and alleviate sacral imbalance and optimize pelvic neuro-biomechanics in the mother.
Because of the particular female adaptations from the increase of hormones, weight gain and postural adaptations, pregnant mothers have a greater chance of sacral subluxation and neuro-biomechanical imbalance than the general population. Additionally, because of the effect the chiropractic adjustment has on all body functions by reducing nerve system stress, pregnant mothers may have significant benefit by having their spines checked regularly throughout pregnancy, optimizing health benefits for both the mother and baby.
Jeanne Ohm, DC ICPA (International Chiropractic Pediatric Association) Executive Coordinator