Back pain is a very common pregnancy symptom! Drop by a physical therapist or masseuse, and you’ll probably see some pregnant women there. Back pain during pregnancy is caused by weight gain, hormones, and a shifting center of gravity.
Thankfully, back pain usually goes away within two weeks of delivery. But it may flare up again once you start lifting and carrying a seven to 10-pound baby so many times a day.
Here are some tips that’ll relieve your back pain. All of them are safe to do while pregnant and may even help you avoid taking meds. As always, check with your doctor before starting anything new.
- Buy Some Pregnancy Gear
We’re talking about a band to support your growing belly, the correct shoes, and a pregnancy pillow. A belly support band lifts the weight off your baby bump, saving your back.
Supportive flats or sneakers are good for everyday wear. If you want to try something with heels, stick to rubber-soled wedges. They offer shock absorption and issue body weight across a larger surface area. Avoid wearing flip flops or ballet flats, unless you have insoles that offer arch support.
To sleep in a better position for your back, put a wedge under your belly. And, sleep on your side. Both these tips can lessen back pain by bracing your belly, so it doesn’t strain your back muscles.
- Hot and Cold Therapy
For really bad back pain, wrap an ice pack in a towel. Apply it to your back for about 15 minutes to ease swelling. If you don’t have an ice pack, a bag of frozen vegetables will do. Then, after the worst of the pain is over, apply heat to encourage healing. Heat will reduce any aches that are still there, and improve circulation. Try putting two cups of uncooked rice in a cotton sock. Make a knot on the open end of the sock, then throw it in the microwave for a minute. Put it onto the painful area for about 15 minutes.
Research has shown that pregnant women who exercise three times a week have less low-back pain. Try a pregnancy-safe exercise such as swimming or walking. You can get pointers on pregnancy exercise in these articles: