Pregnancy back pain is a major concern for expectant mothers, and it’s no surprise with the extra load they’re carrying. However, did you know that pregnancy back pain may occur even during the first trimester, before the body undergoes significant changes on the outside? That’s because lots of changes are happening on the inside.
The stretching of the ligaments in the hip and abdominal area, coupled with the expanding uterus, may actually cause sciatica, a type of back and leg pain that is caused when pressure is applied to the nerves in the lower back. The pain may feel like a mild tingling, a dull ache, a sharp sudden pain, or even a burning sensation. And of course, the expectant mother may also feel back pain in the third trimester. So how do you help alleviate pregnancy back pain?
DonJoy Maternity Belt
Well, first of all, always consult your doctor. The cause of back pain must first be diagnosed in order to be sure of which treatment method to use. In many cases, no treatment is recommended and symptoms clear up on their own. Your physician may suggest applying heat or ice to the area or he may suggest mild doses of over-the-counter pain relievers. You can also wear a pregnancy back support, such as the DonJoy Maternity Belt. It’s designed for all stages of pregnancy and supports both the lower back and abdominal area. The DonJoy Maternity Belt helps to eliminate discomfort during pregnancy.
If these treatments do not work, your doctor may suggest physical therapy or recommend a back specialist. Carrying your baby for nine months is not easy, but the reward is well worth it in the end!
According to BabyCenter.com, as many as three-quarters of pregnant women experience back pain at some point, especially during the later months of pregnancy. Most of this pain is in the lower back and is attributed to the expanding uterus, change in weight and also hormones. Here are some things you can do to alleviate or reduce pregnancy back pain:
Stretching and Strengthening Exercises – Always talk to your doctor before starting an exercise program, because some pregnancy situations may need you to limit exercise. Strengthening and stretching the back can help the muscles and joints that support your back and legs. You can also consider swimming and walking because they are low impact and relaxing.
Wear a Pregnancy Back Brace – Pregnancy back braces provide compression and support where you need it most. They encourage proper posture and also help prevent your ligaments from shifting unnaturally. We recommend the DonJoy Maternity Belt because it helps support both your stomach and your back through all stages of pregnancy.
Wear the Right Shoes – No high heels. As your belly grows your posture changes, and wearing high heels can increase the pressure on your back. Wear comfortable shoes that provide support to the arches of your feet.
Proper Body Mechanics – Be aware of how you are moving – especially when standing or sitting, or when getting out of bed. Keep a straight posture to alleviate pressure on your spine and lower back. Remember to bend your knees when picking up items.
Take it Easy - It’s important to get enough sleep and to take breaks after standing for long periods of time. Avoid carrying heavy objects and divide the weight of items you are carrying when you have to – especially those groceries. And if you really want to relax, treat yourself to a prenatal massage (or ask your partner for one!).