Different kinds of back pains occur in women during pregnancy, and this often increases with advancing gestation. Is it to mention the lower back pain, lumbar pain, or the pelvic girdle pain? All these back pain typically affects the lower back. A lot of factors like hormonal changes, stress, weight gain, muscle separation, and postural changes are responsible for this back pain during pregnancy. The causes vary between women and dependent on the pregnancy stage.
Factors responsible for back pain during pregnancy
The hormonal changes occur during the first trimester due to the rapid increase of progesterone levels in the body. When the level of this hormone is high, the muscles and ligaments near the pelvis are relaxed. It can, in turn, affect the stability and alignment of the joints.
In the second and third trimesters, postural changes will occur due to the protruding stomach, which makes the woman lean backward. This thereby puts extra strain on the back muscles, which could result in lower back pain and muscle stiffness.
A shift forward change occurs from the center of gravity as the baby grows because of the increase in weight. Also, weight gain during pregnancy can contribute to a lower back and joint pain; this can impact both the mother’s and baby’s overall health.
Now that you are aware of the possible causes of back pain during pregnancy, it is left for you to know or proffer remedies for back pains during pregnancy. It is a typical symptom for pregnant women, and that should not cause much panic. At times, back pain might seem inevitable during pregnancy, but there are ways to get relieved. Therefore, proper care must be adhered to while seeking solutions so that you do not end up impairing your health, and that of the baby.
What are the remedies for back pain during pregnancy?
The simplest remedies include:
Do some exercises:
- Simple exercises that do not consume time but focused solely on weak muscles like, stretching of the lower back regularly. Other important activities are the pelvic tilt. It is performed either seated or standing. It improves posture and reduces tension on the lower back by strengthening the abdominal muscles. Also, we have the Kegel exercise. It has the benefit of relieving urinary incontinence by contracting the muscles that stop the flow of urine during urination. It is usually a common complaint by most pregnant women. This assists in strengthening the weakened muscles of the pelvic floor. Aquatic exercise or swimming may also relieve back pain. This is because it encourages the use of both flexor and extensor muscles to remain afloat in the water taking the pressure off the spine.
Related Article: 8 Best Workouts and Exercises for Pregnant Women
Have enough sleep:
- Be it on a firm mattress, and following smart sleep habits. Maintaining a consistent sleep schedule and relaxing bedtime routine is essential.
- Minimizing stress through meditation, prenatal yoga, and other techniques that affect the mind. Prenatal yoga has a lot of benefits for reducing pregnancy pain. This is achieved by tackling emotional stress with deep, mindful breathing exercises that can strengthen and empower you. It can improve posture and tone the body in preparation for the birthing process. It also assists in getting better sleep by relaxing your mind and muscles.
Source for alternative treatments like acupuncture and chiropractic services:
- Acupuncture eliminates any blockages that are interfering with the smooth flow of the body’s energy. It has shown to be effective in relieving back pain during pregnancy. It must be well administered to prevent unwanted side effects like headaches or overstimulation that can induce labor. Chiropractic is usually associated with joint cracking. It is used in detecting imbalances and helps in correcting them.
Get additional support:
- Additional back support should be used while sitting, like a lumbar pillow. Proper sitting posture is necessary, as well as a good standing posture. For women whose job nature requires sitting for hours at a time, a combination of a lumbar pillow and a footstool for leg elevation during sitting can minimize pressure on the lower back. At the same time, it can ease pain and improve posture.
Get a prenatal massage:
- Prenatal massages should be gotten usually on a side-lying position to relax the tight muscles. It improves range of motion and relieves stress.
- Abdominal and back support should be maintained by wearing a maternity belt. This usually supports the weight of the abdomen by performing the job of a weakened abdominal muscle. It thereby decreases strain on the lower back.
Other remedies for back pain during pregnancy include:
- Avoid wearing high-heeled shoes that do not provide adequate body support.
- Postural changes should be made, such as standing and sitting upright to enable a straight back and a square shoulder.
- Inflammation should be reduced. Relax the tight muscles using a warm compressor.
- Sleep on one side usually on the left side by using a pillow between the legs and below the abdomen. It typically takes the weight of the stomach off the low back.
- Direct use of alternating hot and cold packs can also relieve back pain. The hot pack relaxes the muscles while the cold packs serve to numb the painful area.
- Get help when you need to lift heavy objects.
- Use of simple pain reliever like paracetamol. It is considered safe, but you will need to consult with your doctor first before the intake. If the back pain is terrible, your doctor might prescribe a stronger one or refer you to a physiotherapist.
- Squat down, bend knees, and keep back straight when lifting an object.
- Always resist the urge to push your belly far forward but stand up straight.
- Do not take medications without consulting with your doctor.
- Practice deep and proper breathing techniques. It helps the rib cage move properly by bringing air into the side rib cage, low and middle back, thereby releasing tightness in those muscles.
Always consult with your doctor before you embark on any of these remedies to ascertain fitness and safety. Also, if you encounter a severe back pain during pregnancy or back pains that last more than two weeks, kindly seek medical help.