Back Pain during Pregnancy: What you can do to prevent it

Back pain is a common problem more so among the pregnant women. As the baby grows the uterus increases to almost 1000 times its original size. This amount of growth centred in one area affects the balance of the body and causes some discomfort, says Consultant Gynaecologist, Dr. T. Sumita

Back pain is also caused due to the strain of the growing uterus on the back muscles. The weakness of the abdominal muscles may also cause back pain.  In addition,  the pregnancy hormones cause the muscles to relax and become loose thereby contributing to low back pain.

During pregnancy the body undergoes many changes, most of them are normal, while a few of them are abnormal.  While it will do no good to unnecessarily worry about the normal changes one must not ignore the pathological ones.

Also read: Diabetes & Pregnancy

Few tips to prevent or ease back pain:

  • Wear low heeled or flat shoes with a good arch support.
  • Ask for help when lifting heavy objects.
  • When standing for long hours, place one foot on a stool or box.
  • Do not lie on a bed that is too soft.
  • Do not bend over to pick things up- squat down, bend your knees, and keep your back straight.
  • Sit on a chair with a good support or use a small pillow for the small of your back.
  • Applying hot or cold compresses to the back also eases the pain.
  • Doing special exercises in pregnancy (prenatal exercises) can also lessen backache as they strengthen and stretch the muscles that support the back and legs and promote good posture.
  • Prenatal exercises will not only help to ease your pain but also help to prepare your body for labour and delivery.
  • Maternal girdles are special devices like elastic corsets that support the weight of your abdomen and ease the weight off your back.

Finally, back pain may also be caused due to other problems. Don’t try to treat yourself. If it continues or gets worse, seek medical help.