This is usually caused by the additional weight, “pregnancy waddle” (your center of gravity has shifted), plus the way your hormones have relaxed your muscles and ligaments.
What to do?
- Good posture can help reduce the strain caused by shifting your weight forward. Tuck your buttocks under, pull your shoulders back and stand straight. When you sit, keep your feet elevated and place a small pillow in your lower back. Avoid sitting or standing still for long periods.
- When you sleep, do so on your side. It may help to keep a pillow between your knees and another under your abdomen (full body pillows are also helpful).
- Avoid straining your back when you lift objects. dont’t bend over or lift with your back; instead, squat and lift with your legs.
Important Note: While back pain may be expected during this stage of your pregnancy, you must not discount the possibility of an underlying problem. Low back pain, especially one that is associated with vaginal bleeding, may indicate pre-term labor. Seek medical assistance immediately when this happens.
These are common in the second and third trimesters. These may be caused by changes in blood circulation during pregnancy. Other causes may include the stress that extra weight puts on your muscles and the pressure of the growing uterus on nerves and blood vessels going to your legs.
What to do?
- To prevent cramps, stretch your legs before sleeping. Avoid pointing your toes when you stretch or exercise. dont’t stay in one position for a long time, and incorporate light exercises into your routine to improve blood circulation and muscle strength.
- When you feel a cramp happening, straighten your leg (heel first) and wriggle your toes. If you can stand, walk for a few minutes to ease the pain and relax the muscle. A hot water bottle can help relieve the pain, too.
Important Note: Contact your health care partner when the leg cramp is accompanied by redness, swelling and if the extremity is warm to touch.
This happens when your body produces and retains more fluid during pregnancy. In the last trimester, the uterus presses on the blood vessels which then impedes the return of blood to your heart. This causes swelling in the legs, ankles, and feet.
What to do?
- Wear loose clothing and remove tight-fitting jewelries. Avoid sitting or standing for long periods, and if you are seated, try to raise your feet or periodically rotate your feet at the ankles. At the end of the day, lie down (or sleep) with your legs elevated.
Important Note: Do not forget to call your doctor immediately if you suffer from severe or sudden swelling. This may be a symptom of pre-eclampsia, especially if accompanied by blurred vision, headaches, and rapid weight gain. If only one leg swells, this could be a symptom of a blood clot, which also needs medical attention.
How about you Mums, what are your practices while you are/were experiencing these drawbacks? SHARE it with us!
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***This article is contributed by Mhagie Samson-Mariano and now owned by MummySG.com
****Image Source: http://cdn.pregnancybase.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Pregnancy-Cramps-Third-Trimester.jpg