Changes in Spine + Pelvis Mechanics During Pregnancy and the Impact on Labor + Delivery


Dr Satya Sardonicus DC, CACCP

Pregnancy introduces significant mechanical stress to the spine and pelvis (through both additional weight and frequent changes in center of gravity). This can aggravate old mechanical problems as well as create new ones. The pelvis will be of particular significance, of course, relating to baby positioning (intrauterine constraint, particularly in 3rd trimester), as well as during delivery (that is, if the pelvis is twisty, it’s harder for baby to come out). These mechanical changes also often result in interference to nerve signaling, as well as elevate a stress response in the brain. Interference with nerve signaling means the brain will be less able to coordinate normal functions (think of static on the line during a phone call; part of the messages get garbled and you often end up missing parts). While this is of course relevant throughout pregnancy, it’s of particular importance around labor and delivery. Interference with nerve signaling to the cervix, for example, could cause spasm in that muscle and therefore failure to dilate. Interference with nerve signaling to the uterine wall muscle could interfere with the peristaltic contractions necessary to efficiently eject the baby. Chronically elevating a stress response in the brain will have a myriad of affects, including but not limited to: predisposition to depression and anxiety, difficulty sleeping, mental fog, and suppressed pathways for connection and bonding. While these considerations are often missing from perinatal care, research shows that by including therapeutics that encourage more fluid and balanced biomechanics, we see easier and more comfortable pregnancy, as well as significantly shorter labor + delivery times and fewer interventions needed.

Presenter Bio:

Dr. Satya Sardonicus is a teacher, clinician, coach, and professional speaker, and the founder of The Chrysalis Studio in Portland, Oregon where she specializes in sensory processing, chronic stress, and trauma. Dr. Sardonicus also serves as an adjunct professor and clinical supervisor for Palmer College of Chiropractic and University of Western States, and as a guest lecturer for courses in Pediatrics and Clinical Neurology at University of Western States. Dr. Sardonicus brings a unique perspective of the healing process; her deeply personal experience with trauma and chronic illness inspired her to innovate treatment strategies and programs that promote sustainable healing and less reliance on outside providers. Her multidisciplinary framework for facilitating therapeutic change has been referred to as a “unified field theory” to provide sustainable, transformative, trauma-informed care across all techniques. A second-generation chiropractor in a family full of holistic providers, Dr. Sardonicus is actively informed by a passion for neuroscience, biotensegrity + fascia, and a vitalistic philosophy. She is the creator of Fascial Flow Method, a groundbreaking body-based approach to unwind old trauma and tension patterns and become more resilient to physical, mental, and emotional stressors. Above all, Dr. Sardonicus is an innovative thinker, healer, and champion of human potential. ***our clinic name is currently Little Adjustments, not The Chrysalis Studio, but the name will be changing as of Jan 2019, so this is the most accurate reflection for your purposes. Just note that if you'd like to visit our current website, you'll find it at (and more info on Dr S specifically at