Pregnancy brings with it many changes in the woman’s body. Some are just kinder to the expectant mom; others, not so much. Pregnancy pains and aches are examples of the latter. Unfortunately, they are part and parcel with the baby in your tummy.
But it does not mean that you must endure the hurt and discomfort passively. You can do something or several things to alleviate pregnancy pain and aches. From physical activity to treatments, here are five tried and tested pain-relief methods that make pregnancy more relaxed and more comfortable for soon-to-be-mommies.
1. Regular Exercise
Far from hurting pregnant women, physical activity is recommended for a healthy pregnancy and baby. Moderate-intensity exercise strengthens the mother’s bones and muscles to help carry the additional weight of the growing baby. Stretching also helps alleviate tension and pain.
During the third trimester, exercise will play a big part in preparing your body for childbirth. Talk to your doctor about appropriate workouts for every stage of pregnancy.
2. Good Posture
Your center of gravity will shift as your stomach grows. The additional load in your abdomen will make you tip forward, so you’ll try to lean back to avoid falling. This places a lot of stress on your lower back muscles, leading to backaches and discomfort.
Maintain good posture by standing straight and tall with a wide stance, relaxed shoulders and back, and chest held high. Avoid being on your feet for too long. Take frequent breaks, and rest your feet if you need to stand for a long time.
Proper sitting posture is also essential to prevent and relieve back pain. Ensure that your back is supported by choosing an ergonomic chair or using a cushion or pillow.
3. Pregnancy Shoes
Comfortable shoes are most important for pregnant women. Carrying another human being can be a burden on your feet, causing them to swell and ache. Wearing shoes with excellent arch support and the sole cushion will help lessen the burden on your poor feet.
That said, find a well-fitting pair of maternity shoes to wear when you go outdoors and slippers for indoor use. Avoid wearing high heels for the next nine months.
4. Belly Band
You don’t have to bear the burden of additional pounds alone. Support your lower back by wearing a belly band, and ease some of your lower back pain. A belly band or pregnancy girdle uses gentle compression to help you “carry” the weight of your abdomen and lessen the dress on your back muscles. A word of caution, though: too much compression can hamper blood circulation and cause low blood pressure.
Gentle compression can also help aching body parts. Use therapeutic elastic tapes or kinesiology tapes on your sore muscles, joints, and ligaments for pain relief.
5. Therapies for Pain Relief
There are drug-free treatments to alleviate pregnancy pains and aches. Some popular pain-relief therapies are acupuncture and chiropractic treatment. If none of the remedies above are working for you, talk to your doctor about trying complementary therapies to relieve the pain.
Severe Pain Is a Red Flag
Some pain and discomfort are expected during pregnancy because your body is undergoing rapid changes and growing to accommodate a human being. The added weight puts more strain on your bones and muscles, resulting in back pain. As the child grows, your stomach must also expand to make space for them, and there’s going to be discomfort there.
Other physical changes during pregnancy, like constipation, heartburn, and contractions, will also bring with them some soreness and aches. However, if the pain becomes too overwhelming, visit your doctor immediately.
Severe pain, especially in the abdomen, can be a sign that something is wrong. Your doctor may make you undergo an ultrasound screening and other medical tests to check the baby’s condition and diagnose the cause of the pain before prescribing a safe treatment or medication.
No woman or person wants to feel constant pain and discomfort. It’s only natural to seek ways to alleviate your aches, tenderness, and stiffness that come with pregnancy, but you should be careful about choosing remedies for your pain.
Always consider whether the method you select is safe for your sensitive condition and the growing baby in your tummy. To be safe, only try those that have been proven reliable by years of research and experience and recommended by your doctor.