Hot Air Balloon Uterus

No, this is not some weird diagnosis you'll find in the "rare diseases" section of a clinical diagnosis textbook.

It's just an analogy that helped me easily understand how the ligaments of the uterus have ANYTHING to do with the sacrum and spine.

You know that old song, "The hip bone's connect to the...leg bone. The leg bone's connected to the...knee bone?" While it's simply a goofy childhood song, it does hold a lot of truth. Here's one simple anatomy fact for you today: Everything in your body is connected. Simple enough, right? Yes. But sometimes we forget that when it comes to our pregnancy and the importance of spinal health! So let's chat about that!

ligaments of pregnancy

Think for a moment about a hot air balloon.

Let's imagine that the balloon part is magically fixed in place- perhaps it's stuck in a tree (idk...I couldn't come up with another reason why a hot air balloon wouldn't be free floating). So now with this basket hanging below, let's say you take it and twist it ever so slightly. What happens? 
Well, obviously that's going to put some tension and torsion on the ropes connecting the basket to the balloon. What would also likely happen is that the rope(s) would be tight one one or two ends, and then loose on the opposite one or two ends. Ultimately, this could even cause some uneven pulling or re-shaping of the balloon itself. Make sense?

So now let's think of it this way:
Balloon = Uterus
Basket = Pelvis
Ropes connecting the basket to the balloon = Ligaments connecting the uterus to the pelvis.
So now, what do you think happens to the uterus and the ligaments attached, if the pelvis misaligns? Now, it's pretty simple to understand that they have an affect on each other, right?

ligaments of pregnancy

But anatomically, WHY is this possible?

It's all because of that little guy in the bottom right of my sketch, called the UTEROSACRAL LIGAMENT. By definition, it is the ligament that attaches on one end to the uterus, and on the other end to the sacrum. It is because of this attachment that if the sacrum misaligns, then there will be an uneven shifting and pulling on the uterus.

So think back to the hot air balloon: if the rope(s) on the back side of the basket/balloon begin to pull, what then happens to the rope(s) on the front side of the basket/balloon? Yup. You got it- they can pull as well. Sometimes both of them, sometimes just one of them (depending on which direction the basket/pelvis misaligns to). But either way, this is what many women experience as ROUND LIGAMENT PAIN. These are the points on the right and left "undersides" of the belly, if that makes sense. 

Webster Technique

So what can you do about this?

Simple answer: Go see a prenatal chiropractor! By removing the misalignment of the sacrum and the pelvis as a whole, we can minimize or completely eliminate the uneven pulling that may be happening in the uterosacral ligament. This will ultimately minimize or eliminate the tension found in the round ligament, leading to decreased round ligament discomfort!

Decreased tension in the ligaments supporting the uterus is key for allowing for a more comfortable pregnancy (especially into the end of the 3rd trimester!), ample room for proper fetal growth and positioning, as well as overall pelvic positioning for a safe and healthy labor and delivery!

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