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are there any side effects if I use arnica montana while pregant, my back i killing me....any advice would be helpful

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Hi Cherie
Around 70% of women experience back or pelvic pain during pregnancy. No wonder - you are gaining weight, walking in a new way, and have loads of pregnancy hormones relaxing the ligaments which hold your body upright, causing increased stress on joints and spinal bones. Back, hip and joint pain can really disrupt your life, your sleep and stop you enjoying the miracle of your pregnancy. Scientific studies have shown that regular caring massage during pregnancy reduces stress and tension both for the body and the mind and does wonders for back pain and aching muscles. Not everyone can afford pregnancy massages from qualified practioners. As an effective DIY solution, high quality, 100% natural rubs or creams containing Arnica montana herbal extracts can provide really effective & fast acting relief from back ache joint and muscle strain - in all people, whether pregnant or not. Arnica montana works by relaxing muscles, reducing inflammation and speeding the bodies ability to heal itself.
A good quality cream is great for use in a relaxing lower back massage in labour too, and for shoulder tension and back ache when adjusting to strain of breast feeding, lifting and carrying a new baby. Mild and gentle herbal rubs can be lovely to use as a cream for soothing infant massage. It is also very useful to have in your first aid kit or baby bag when your little one starts exploring the world and begins crawling or bumping into things.
The contra -indications (raised blood pressure, etc) relating to Arnica montana relate to oral consumption (drinking) of the herbal extract, and in normal useage (following recommendations on label) of up to 4 to 6 times a day a topical rub should have no detrimental effect on you or your baby -only benefits. Find a cream that is designed for use in pregnancy and labour and is 100% natural without synthetics - ideally with other effective safe herbal or natural mineral ingredients which assist in reducing pain, swelling and bruising - but avoid harsh rubifacient herbs like peppermint, eucalyptus and oil of wintergreen. I can suggest a couple if you like.

Couple of points -Only apply Arnica creams to unbroken skin - it is not designed as an anti-septic cream for grazes or open wounds, and it will sting, as well as exposing you to bacteria and the side effects of oral consumption. Only other obvious points to make are if you suffer from placenta previa, high blood pressure or other serious conditions you should seek medical advice before use, and that if you are experiencing vaginal bleeding, cramping pains and back ache or sudden severe pain you need to urgently seek medical advice - these could be indications of pre term labour or serious problems that require attention. As a matter of sensible precaution always check with your health care provider before using any treatments whether traditional, complementary health care or allopathic. Hope this helps
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