Ways To Treat Back Pain While Pregnant
Your body undergoes tremendous physical and hormonal changes during pregnancy. As a result, pregnancy back pain is a common complaint, especially in the third trimester. If youre looking for ways to treat back pain during pregnancy, try these 10 tips.
Do Not Drop Over Your Desk
When sitting in an office chair, utilize the same good posture methods you make use of when standing. Its crucial to keep excellent posture and support your when sitting down, particularly if you do it for a number of hours per day. Select a high quality chair that provides strong assistance for your lower back, as well as see to it your knees are a little bit greater than your hips when you rest. How To Get Relief From Lower Back Pain During Pregnancy
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Lower Back Pain In Pregnancy
Its possible to feel a little lower back painmostly aching or crampingwhen you first become pregnant, says Greves. But, as things progress, lower back pain in pregnancy is most likely from the load in front, she says.
Pregnancy causes a boost of different hormones in your body, like relaxin and progesteroneboth of which cause your muscles and joints to relax, Greves explains. You may notice it more in the second or third trimester given that the baby is enlarging, she says. Your abdominal muscles weaken a little and that can directly affect the back.
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Is Prenatal Yoga Effective Against Pregnancy Back Pain
Yes, mindful breathing exercises may help tackle the physical pain in pregnancy. It does not only help moms improve their posture but also tone the mind and body.
It is an essential process to prepare moms for the whole ordeal of birthing the baby. If you want to try yoga, look for programs with instructors specifically trained in prenatal yoga.
Types Of Back Pain And When They Might Occur During Pregnancy
There are many types of pain, and different people experience pain in different ways and at different times. For example, you might notice sharp jabs when you make certain movements, like getting out of a car or walking up a flight of stairs. Or, you might have muscle cramps or spasms when you sit or sleep in certain positions. Pain can come on suddenly or slowly, and you might feel anything from a sharp pain to a constant dull pressure or a throbbing ache that comes and goes. You might even experience a combination of these sensations. Sometimes it can be tricky to pinpoint the exact site of the pain. For example, you might have trouble distinguishing back pain from soreness in your pelvis or hip.
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How To Relieve Back Pain In Pregnancy
From start to finish, pregnancy comes with its fair share of aches, pains and general discomforts. While many of these unpleasantries are relatively easy to cope with, others can range from mildly distressing to borderline debilitating. Back pain in pregnancy is one of the more common complaintsand it can be tolerable for some and agonizing for others.
If youre dealing with back pain in pregnancy, the reassuring news is that youre not alone. Of course, pain is a relative term, and it can be tough to know whats normaland whats not. Want to know when back pain may start in pregnancy, and how to get relief if and when it rears its ugly head? Heres a breakdown of what to expect.
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Think About Your Posture
When youre standing up, keep your head up and your shoulders back as much as you can.
When sitting on a chair, try to keep:
- your hips level with or slightly higher than your knees
- your bottom at the back of the chair
- your back supported by the chair
- your feet resting flat on the floor.
If you work in an office, the top of your computer screen should be set up just below eye level. Your keyboard should be at a comfortable height so your forearms are flat. Try to get up regularly so you dont get stiff.
Try not to slump when youre sitting on the sofa. Use cushions to support your back and have your feet resting on the floor. It may help to lie on your side if you are watching TV or relaxing.
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Apply Ice Not Heat For Lower Back Pain During Pregnancy
I know there are differing theories about whether to use ice or heat for back pain.
When it comes to lower back pain, I find that ice works better.
Inflammation of spinal joints is nearly always at the core of back pain, not pulled muscles.
Ice will decrease this inflammation while heat will make it worse.
Reducing inflammation can also help improve spinal movement which is necessary for the healing process.
Do not ice sore or stiff muscles, though. The cold will make them contract and possibly hurt more. Place the ice directly on the spine through a thin cloth.
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Treatment For Early Back Pain During Pregnancy
No matter what stage of your pregnancy youre in, there are ways to treat back pain. You probably wont be able to prevent it completely, but you can help to minimize the pain.
Follow these tips for reducing back pain throughout your pregnancy.
If your back pain seems to be linked to your stress levels, things like meditation, prenatal yoga, and extra rest can all be helpful ways to manage your stress levels.
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Pregnancy Back Pain Relief: 6 Safe And Easy Ways To Feel Better
Many people find back pain during pregnancy resolves itself once the baby is born. But that is no consolation if you are currently pregnant and back pain is making your life miserable. Acute or chronic pregnancy back pain can interfere with exercise, work, sleep, and simple daily tasks.
Here are some practical ways to prevent and relieve back pain for a more comfortable and enjoyable pregnancy.
1. Maintain Good Posture
As your center of gravity moves to the front of your body, it is normal to try to compensate for that change by leaning back, which can put undue strain on low back muscles and can make it difficult for your core muscles to work properly. Try to be mindful of your posture and resist arching your back excessively.
Good posture principles:
Stand up tall and straight. Hold your chest high. Keep your shoulders back and down. Avoid locking your knees. Have a comfortable, wide stance. Use a small pillow to support your back when sitting.
2. Stay Physically Active
Sitting or standing too long in the same position can irritate the muscles and joints in your back. Its important to get moving. Regular exercise helps your back stay strong, mobile, and healthy during and after pregnancy.
3. Avoid Heavy Lifting
4. Wear a Support Belt
5. Apply Heat or Ice
6. Try Physical Therapy
How Is A Back Injury Treated During Pregnancy
If you injure your back while you are pregnant, simple exercises and using back support are usually enough to fix the injury. In very rare cases, pregnant women can have a serious injury such as a herniated disc. In this case you might need surgery. Back surgery is usually safe, however, both for you and your baby during pregnancy.
Many women have a pre-existing back condition before they become pregnant, such as scoliosis, spondylolisthesis or a lumbar disc condition. Sometimes your back problems get better during pregnancy, but sometimes they get worse. It’s important to mention any back problems to the medical team who are looking after you.
Talk to your doctor if you need to take medicine to control back pain. Paracetamol is one of the safest painkillers during pregnancy. Do not take aspirin or non-steroidal anti-inflammatories such as Nurofen while you are pregnant.
Your back injury should not affect labour or pain relief during labour. It is also usually possible to have an epidural if you have a back injury. Tell the hospital about your condition because there are different positions you can use to ease back pain during labour.
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How Long Does Sciatica Pain Last During Pregnancy
Once you develop your first sciatica flare-up during pregnancy, its likely youll experience more flare-ups throughout the remainder of the pregnancy.
After all, your belly is only going to get bigger and that puts more pressure on your sciatic nerve. But, take comfort in the fact that pregnancy-related sciatica almost always goes away after delivery. Once that pressure is relieved, your sciatic nerve begins to recover on its own.
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Strap On A Maternity Belt
If you have pelvic girdle pain around your middle lower back and hips, a maternity belt may relieve your pain. This support garment does the work of the ligaments, muscles and fascia of the girdle area, explains Richter. But, she cautions, it should not be worn all of the time, because those muscles will stop working and will need to be retrained after you have your baby. I usually recommend that clients wear them during more taxing activitiessuch as activities with lots of bending, lifting, walking or standingjust so theyre not in discomfort, she explains. And then I give them exercises to try and resolve the issue.
Mickeler warns against wearing the belts too tightly, which can contribute to pelvic organ prolapse. Because of this, its best to have a practitioner guide you on how to use one.
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Physical Therapy And Exercise
Your healthcare provider or a physical therapist can recommend exercises to strengthen your low back and reduce pain. Regular exercise can strengthen the muscles of your low back, boost flexibility, and reduce the stress on the spine.
Safe exercises during pregnancy include walking, swimming, cycling, and low-impact aerobic exercises .
Causes Of Back Pain During Pregnancy
As many as 80 percent of moms-to-be experience back pain at some point during their pregnancy, and the causes can vary. The main culprit is often strain on the muscles of your back caused by pregnancy weight gain and by changes in your posture due to your growing belly. As your pregnancy progresses, there is more weight on the front of your body, making you bend slightly forward. To keep you balanced, your posture changes, and you might overcorrect and lean back a little too far. The extra strain can make your back feel stiff and sore.
Weak abdominal muscles can also cause back pain. As your baby grows, your tummy muscles can stretch and weaken. These muscles play an important role in supporting your spine, so as they weaken, your back can start to hurt.
Some pregnancy hormones can also play a role. Hormones that are meant to relax the ligaments and joints of your pelvis to help your baby pass through the birth canal more easily can also loosen the joints of your back, which can cause them to overextend, leading to soreness.
Why Do I Have Back Pain
During pregnancy your ligaments loosen up and stretch to get your body ready for labour. This puts strain on your joints, which can cause back pain.
Pregnancy also affects your posture . When youre pregnant, the natural curve in your spine increases because its trying to cope with the extra weight of your baby bump. This can cause pain.
Many women say the pain is worse in the evening and after 28 weeks of pregnancy .
Some women with lower back pain also have pelvic girdle pain , which is a common condition in pregnancy. It describes the pain caused by the pelvic joints getting stiff or less stable during pregnancy.
Back problems can affect your sleep and make it harder to go about your everyday life. But there are a few things you can do to help ease the pain, sleep better and stay strong throughout your pregnancy.
When Is Lower Back Pain During Pregnancy Serious
If your back pain lasts more than two weeks, it’s time to contact your healthcare provider. Call your provider immediately if:
- Your back pain is severe, gets progressively worse, or is caused by trauma.
- Your back pain is accompanied by a fever, vaginal bleeding, or a burning sensation when you pee.
- You’ve lost feeling in one or both legs, or you suddenly feel uncoordinated or weak.
- You have suddenly worsened lower back pain in the late second or early third trimester. This can be a sign of preterm labor, especially if you didn’t have intense back pain previously.
- You have pain in your lower back or in your side just under your ribs, on one or both sides. This can be a sign of a kidney infection, especially if you have a fever, nausea, or blood in your urine.
Lower back pain is just one of pregnancy’s possible discomforts. Read our article on 7 common pregnancy aches and pains to find out what the others are.
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Is Back Pain A Sign Of Pregnancy
Back pain can actually start at the very beginning of your pregnancy. Still, while back pain can be a sign of early pregnancy, its not one of the most common first-trimester symptoms, says Krishna Shah, MD, assistant professor of anesthesiology-interventional pain medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas. He points out that youre more likely to be tipped off by symptoms like a missed period, nausea, swollen breasts and fatigue.
Whats more, in early pregnancy, youll probably experience more general achiness in your lower back rather than full-on pain, explains Christine Greves, MD, an ob-gyn at the Winnie Palmer Hospital for Women & Babies in Orlando. She also emphasizes that there are many things that can cause back pain besides pregnancy to that end, youll want to take stock of any other physical symptoms.
Path To Improved Well Being
There are several causes of back pain during pregnancy. These are due to changes that occur in your body.
Pressure on back musclesAs your baby grows, your uterus expands and becomes heavier. This puts added weight on your back muscles. You may find yourself leaning backward or arching your low back. The pressure can lead to back pain or stiffness.
Weakness in stomach musclesYour growing baby also puts pressure on your stomach muscles. This can cause them to stretch and weaken. Your stomach and back muscles are connected. Your back muscles have to work harder to offset your belly.
PosturePregnancy can alter your center of gravity. The way you move, sit, and stand can cause pain to your back and other parts of your body. A compressed nerve due to poor posture also can cause pain.
Pregnancy hormonesMany hormones change when you are pregnant for different reasons. Later in your pregnancy, hormones increase to relax the muscles and ligaments in your pelvis. This prepares your body for labor. If your muscles and ligaments become too loose, it can lead to back pain.
StressAnxiety and built-up tension can make your back muscles tight or stiff.
To help prevent back pain, be mindful of how you sit, stand, sleep, and move.
If you have back pain, these tips can help relieve soreness and stiffness.
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