Carrying a heavy bag of groceries from your car to the kitchen can take some effort, but it’s nothing compared with the months you spend carrying a developing child. While the human spine is well-suited for managing temporary loads, it’s common when the late stages of pregnancy include back pain.
It’s not only the weight of the new baby. Hormonal changes that facilitate the birth process also relax ligaments, so your body can stretch to accommodate delivery. However, ligaments are also part of the musculoskeletal support system, so if stretchy ligaments affect your lower back, there’s a greater load placed on your muscles and spine.
Plenty of self-care tips can help you reduce the back pain experience. When these aren’t enough, however, visit Westside Pain Specialists to explore further options. Dr. James Nassiri and his team can offer medical pain management that keeps your safety — and your baby’s — in mind.
Know when to seek help
While back pain during pregnancy is normal and expected, it can also be a symptom of more serious issues, so there are times when you shouldn’t simply live with the pain. Consider visiting your OB/GYN when:
- Back pain is severe
- Pain starts suddenly
- Your symptoms are on one side of the body rather than central
- Pain is accompanied by vaginal bleeding, burning during urination, or fever
If the nature of your pain changes, or if normal pain begins to substantially interfere with your daily routine, it’s time to seek medical attention about your discomfort.
Managing back pain while pregnant
You can be proactive about back pain by practicing yoga or choosing activities that strengthen core muscles. Carrying extra pounds can add to your back pain risk during pregnancy, so now is also the time to shed the extra load.
Adjusting to the baby
- Watch your posture: Sit and stand with care, keeping your normal posture when possible with your upper body straight and high, head up, and shoulders back
- Foot friendly: Choose low-heeled, comfortable shoes with arch support
- Ergonomics: Lift from a squat rather than bending your back, and choose comfortable seating with good lumbar support
- Physical activity: Walking and water exercises are typically ideal for most pregnancies, to maintain strength and flexibility throughout pregnancy
When pain begins
- Hot and cold: Heating pads and ice packs, alone or in combination, can relieve aches and pains
- Side sleeping: If you typically sleep on your back, switching to one side, with a pillow between your knees, can take a load off your back
- Maintain your activity: It’s natural to rest when you’re in pain, but the gentle activity you started earlier can help your body overcome discomfort
- Acetaminophen: Check with your doctor first, but acetaminophen is generally safe for both mom and baby
Whenever pain becomes too much, consider contacting Westside Pain Specialists at their most convenient office in Beverly Hills or Rancho Cucamonga, California. Call your preferred location directly to schedule your consultation.
Don’t let back pain dominate your pregnancy. Book an appointment now.