Back Pain during Pregnancy
Back pain during Pregnancy is very common, especially in the second half of pregnancy. Some common causes of back pain during pregnancy are as follows:
- The prime cause of the back pain is the weight that the growing uterus and the baby exerts on the back. In a normal healthy pregnancy, women tend to gain around 10 to 15 kgs of weight. The growing uterus on the lower back leading to.
- Postural changes is again a common cause of backache. The growing foetus and the uterus often leads to shifting of the body’s centre of gravity. This eventually results in the women changing the way they walk in order to adjust their posture.
- Hormonal changes during pregnancy act on the ligaments of lower abdomen and back. The action of these hormones leads to loosening of the joints in an attempt to prepare the body for delivery. The loosening of joints also increases instability in the body causing further postural changes.
- As the uterus keeps on expanding, muscles from the centre of the chest to the pelvic bone separates along the central line. This separation increases the intensity of pressure on the back.
- Emotional stress can lead to increase in muscle tension along the region of the back and hence manifest as back pain.
Back pain resulting from pregnancy usually subsides after delivery. Certain steps can be taken to relieve back pain to some extent:
- Regular exercise can help in improving flexibility of the body and strengthen muscles and joints. This can help in some easing of pain and stress. Simple exercises like walking, swimming, stationary cycling can be done during pregnancy. A physical therapist or an antenatal exercise specialist can be consulted to help learn proper exercise techniques.
- Alternate application of hot and cold packs to the back can ease pain to some extent. One should make sure that they do not apply hot packs to the abdomen during pregnancy.
- Improving overall postures can help in reducing the stress on spine. Proper posture while sitting, working or sleeping is highly recommended. Simple step like sleeping on the sides with a pillow kept between the knees helps in reducing pressure from the back. Keeping a rolled towel behind the back while sitting as a support can help in keeping back muscles relaxed. Proper sitting posture is also helpful.
- Some women may even try wearing a support belt.
- Back pain, as a result of stress, requires counselling.
- While trying to lift some object off the ground one should try bending knees than bending the back.
- Avoiding high heels during pregnancy is another important step to reduce back ache.
Treatment might consist of some pain killers or muscle relaxants. One should seek medical treatment in case of severe pain, cramps, difficulty in urination or feeling of needle like pain in the extremities.