Pelvic Pain During Pregnancy
Tips for Dealing with Pelvic Discomfort During Pregnancy
Do you suddenly experience shooting pains in your lower back or pelvic area, especially when getting up? This is referred to as pelvic pain, a condition that nearly half of all pregnant women experience. In this blog, we’ll explain what it is and provide you with 7 helpful tips to alleviate or prevent pelvic pain.
What is Pelvic Pain?
Pelvic pain is a common complaint that arises during pregnancy due to changes in your body influenced by the pregnancy hormone progesterone. This hormone makes your muscles and joints in the pelvic area more flexible to facilitate childbirth. However, this also makes your pelvis more fragile and less capable of handling movements that you wouldn’t normally have an issue with.
Recognizing Pelvic Pain
Everyday activities like turning in bed, descending stairs, or vacuuming can trigger discomfort due to your weakened pelvis. Pelvic pain is characterized by, unsurprisingly, pain in your pelvic region. It can be sudden and sharp or a persistent ache. The pain can be localized or radiate to other areas.
Consequences of Pelvic Pain
Pelvic pain isn’t just a minor discomfort that you should endure. It can lead to additional discomfort in your lower back, tailbone, groin, and/or thighs. You might also experience increased fatigue, digestive issues, or even incontinence. Activities like getting out of bed or rising from a chair may become painful.
7 Tips for Dealing with Pelvic Pain
Not everyone experiences pelvic pain during pregnancy, but if you do, it can be quite bothersome. That’s why we’ve compiled 7 tips to help you manage these uncomfortable symptoms or try to prevent them.
Tip 1: Visit a Specialized Pelvic Physiotherapist
Pelvic pain and pelvic discomfort during pregnancy are very specific issues. Ensure that you seek help and advice from a specialist, such as a pelvic physiotherapist. They can often alleviate your symptoms in a few sessions and teach you how to perform certain movements with less discomfort.
Tip 2: Stay Active
Even if you find that movement is painful, try to remain active and perform exercises that strengthen the muscles in your lower back and pelvis. This can be achieved through activities like prenatal yoga or pregnancy-specific exercise classes. Your pelvic physiotherapist can provide you with exercises as well.
Tip 3: Avoid Prolonged Postures
You’ve likely noticed this yourself: staying seated, lying down, or standing for too long can be uncomfortable during pregnancy. So, vary your posture and switch between standing and sitting to prevent exacerbating pelvic pain.
Tip 4: Alternate Between Rest and Activities
The more you do, the more fatigued you become, which can worsen the pain. Incorporate moments of rest between your activities, especially as your pregnancy progresses. This becomes even more crucial when dealing with pelvic pain.
Tip 5: Listen to Your Body
This may sound obvious, but it’s often the most challenging aspect. While you should always take care of yourself during pregnancy, it’s especially important with pelvic pain. Pay attention to how you move and make sure not to compensate for pain by adopting unnatural movements, as this could lead to other issues. Your physiotherapist can offer valuable advice on this as well.
Tip 6: Be Mindful of Sitting and Standing
Have you ever thought about how you sit or stand? Probably not, but when dealing with pelvic pain, it’s worth considering. When standing, ensure you distribute your weight evenly between both feet with slightly bent knees, rather than favoring one hip. When sitting, keep your legs slightly apart to allow your buttocks and hips to relax. The cross-legged position can be comfortable for your pelvis.
Tip 7: Ask for Assistance
Do you usually carry heavy groceries with ease or effortlessly lift your toddler with one arm? These are tasks you should avoid now. Don’t hesitate to seek assistance from others; people are generally willing to help.
Consult Your Midwife for Pelvic Pain
How you move can make a significant difference in the severity of your pelvic pain. If you’re experiencing these symptoms, inform your midwife. We can offer additional tips and refer you to a good physiotherapist or pelvic physiotherapist. They can provide guidance on how to climb stairs, turn in bed, or get up from a chair in ways that can alleviate your pelvic pain. If you have more questions, feel free to ask; we’re here to help!