Many pregnant women complain of back pain, which is unsurprising as pregnancy involves gaining weight and growing a larger belly, which changes your centre of gravity. During this time, your body produces relaxin, a hormone which relaxes your pelvis joints and ligaments, affecting your spine.
Let’s look at five tips you can explore to relieve your back issues during pregnancy.
1. Practice good posture
During pregnancy, your centre of gravity shifts forward as your baby grows. When you lean back to balance your posture, it strains your lower back muscles. You should practice good posture by habitually standing up tall and holding your chest high. Avoid locking your knees. Develop a standing posture that is comfortable and wide enough to give you support and stamina. Choose to sit carefully and on chairs that support your back.
2. Put on the right gear
Wear low heel shoes that have good arch support. This means you have to stay away from high heels because they can shift your balance forward even more, causing you to fall. Also, wearing a maternity support belt can be helpful, though only limited research has been conducted on its effectiveness.
3. Sleep on your side
Make sure to sleep only on your side and keep one or both of your knees bent. Place support pillows between your bent knees, behind your back and under your belly. All this will make sleeping more comfortable.
4. Do gentle exercises
Regular and gentle exercise is a great back pain treatment during pregnancy. Get a qualified instructor to help you do prenatal yoga to strengthen your stomach (abdominal) muscles and ease your backache. You can also include massage and gentle exercise classes in water (aquanatal classes).
5. Don’t lift heavy things
Make sure you don’t try lifting anything significantly heavy. If you must do so, make sure to lift them correctly. Avoid bending down at the waist. Bend at your knees and squat down instead. Use your legs and not your back in the lifting process.
When do you consult your doctor?
Back pain can also be a sign of preterm labour or urinary tract infection. If your back pain during pregnancy lasts for more than two weeks or comes with fever, vaginal bleeding, or burning during urination, call your doctor right away.