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Back Pain During Pregnancy

Unfortunately, back pain while pregnant is extremely common. In fact, between 50-70% of women experience back pain at some point during their pregnancy. This pain is more common in the later stages of pregnancy, and women that are overweight or that have previously had back pain are more at risk of having these pregnancy pains. The good news, however, is that even though it’s a common issue, there are a few things you can do to prevent or minimize lower back pain during pregnancy. 

CAUSES OF PREGNANCY BACK PAIN

variety of factors can lead to lower back and hip pain throughout pregnancy. In preparation for the birthing process, your body releases hormones that soften ligaments in the pelvic area and loosen joints. When this happens, it can impact back support and lead to back pain. Your center of gravity also shifts forward during pregnancy as your uterus expands and your baby grows. This shift often affects your posture and strains your back. Additionally, your abdominal muscles stretch and weaken during pregnancy, which strains your back and can lead to pain. Finally, the extra weight and emotional stress of this season of life can lead to or exacerbate back pain. 

HOW TO PREVENT BACK PAIN DURING PREGNANCY 

While you might not be able to avoid back pain entirely, there are a number of things you can do during pregnancy to help prevent and minimize this pain. Regularly doing exercises to strengthen your back and abdominal muscles is one of the most effective preventative measures you can take. However, it’s important to work with your doctor or a fitness professional to ensure that you have an exercise plan that is safe and effective. 

In addition to exercise, it’s important to wear shoes with good support (avoid high heels), sleep on your side, and squat whenever picking things up (as opposed to bending over). Further, if possible, sleep on a firm mattress and sit in chairs that provide good lumbar support. 

PREGNANCY BACK PAIN RELIEF 

Even if you’re not able to avoid back pain, there are some things you can do to experience relief including: 

While back pain during pregnancy is common, remember that there are things you can do to minimize this pain. Contact your doctor with any questions or for ways to get pain relief. Additionally, remember that you should always consult a doctor if you experience severe back pain.

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