Abdominal Pain During Pregnancy
21.02.2017 Andrew Johns 1 Popular
Abdominal Pain in Pregnancy
Is it possible to have abdominal pain during pregnancy? It actually is possible and happens quite often. Most often abdominal pain is caused by physiological changes, and though it can cause a slight discomfort to a future mom, it’s quite normal. Some pains can be even pleasurable for some moms. So what actually causes those pains?
Stomach Pains in Early Pregnancy
Pains in lower abdomen during pregnancy can be divided into two groups according the reasons of their occurrence: obstetric and non-obstetric.
Non-obstetric pains include those provoked by gastrointestinal tract’s problems, stretching ligaments, surgical diseases (appendicitis) or overexertion of ABS muscles. Obstetric pains are those which involve the threat of termination of pregnancy, early placenta detachment, or an ectopic pregnancy.
In any case, only a professional can determine the pain’s nature and reason. However, you can be absolutely sure that everything is perfectly normal, if you have the following signs in early pregnancy:
However, be careful about changes that undergo in your body during first months of pregnancy. Pain in the abdomen might be caused by a spontaneous abortion (miscarriage in people).
Causes of Pain in Late Pregnancy
In late pregnancy, pains in the abdomen aren’t always caused by a threat of a miscarriage or any pathology. There can be several reasons.
The first reason is the wrong diet or schedule of meals, which causes cramp of the digestive system accompanied by pain. The same symptoms are proper for disbacteriosis and colitis. Thus, the intestines copes badly with poorly treated food, stale foods, abundant meals, which causes bloating. When the digestive process ends, such a pain goes away, but it tends to return. In such a case, you need to carefully review your diet and meal times.
Don’t forget, that close to the birth, the growing uterus squeezes the intestines. Moreover, hormonal changes put the double burden on the intestines. During this period, the motility and peristalsis are reduced. Constipation is also quite frequent, and it causes pulling pain in the lower abdomen. Recall that in order to prevent constipation you should consume more products containing raw fiber, drink enough water and walk outdoors.
The second reason is ligaments’ stretching. Ligaments support the uterus. The increasing uterus causes ligaments’ stretching. And in late pregnancy, this often causes gentle spasms in the lower abdomen, or painful sensations on one or both sides of the belly. Such a pain is more pronounced when you change positions, laugh, sneeze. It is sharp, but goes away quickly. In addition, such symptoms can be accompanied by stretch marks’ appearance on the abdomen.
The third reason of abdominal pain in pregnancy is excessive load on your ABS. Such painful sensations often occur during or after physical exercise. To avoid it, simply take a rest and relax.
The fourth cause is intestinal obstruction, appendicitis or pancreatitis. Despite the fact that such reasons are quite rare, if you have such symptoms as growing stronger pain, fever, nausea and dizziness, be sure to call an ambulance. You might need a surgery.
The fifth cause are gynaecological problems testifying of improper pregnancy course and health problems.
The sixth reason is the threat of miscarriage. Pain in the lumbar area often feels like contractions and doesn’t go away without drugs intake. If it's a premature termination of pregnancy, pain will be accompanied by vaginal discharge varying both in color (from light-brown to bright red) and in abundance. In such a case, immediately consult your doctor, this might be essential to save the baby.
The seventh reason is the premature detachment of the placenta that may occur either in late pregnancy or immediately before the birth. This condition can be triggered by physical overexertion, injury of the abdominal area, specific diseases (hypertension, toxemia, etc.). Severe pain in the lower abdomen accompanied by uterine bleeding is explained by the fact the placenta detachment triggers vessels’ rupture. Such a condition is dangerous for both the baby and the woman, so immediately call an ambulance. Most likely an emergency delivery will be required.
Acute Pain in Pelvic Area
The uterus is held between the hipbones with connective-tissue ligaments. During pregnancy the uterus increases its weight causing the ligaments to stretch, which creates abdominal pain. Usually that kind of pain can be felt in the lower abdomen near the pelvis.
Usually this pain happens when a woman changes her body position (for example, turning too quickly), lifts a heavy weight or even sneezes or coughs. All that causes a sharp but short painful sensation that wears off on its own.
This pain can happen on any stage of the pregnancy. Sometimes they can happen less often or even disappear towards the end of the pregnancy. This abdominal pain is harmless for a future mom and her baby and doesn’t need to be treated.
Dragging Pain in Lower Abdomen
The hormones produced during pregnancy affect the gastrointestinal tract so that food travels more slowly. That causes overdistension in some parts of intestinal tract and constipation. A woman can feel a dull aching pain in the sides of the lower abdomen (often in the left side) and have gas.
The discomfort disappears as soon as the food is digested but can happen again if a woman doesn’t stick to a healthy diet. To avoid constipation, one needs to drink more water, eat fermented dairy products and foods rich in fiber (raw vegetables, fruits, whole grain bread). A good way to combat constipation and abdominal pain is to have some moderate physical exercise.
During the pregnancy the body produces a special hormone called relaxin. That hormone influences the cartilage, ligaments, and bones of pelvic floor. This hormone softens the ligaments of the hipbones, which allows them to stretch to make it easier for the baby to travel through the pelvic ring during the delivery.
More often it’s the symphysis pubis joint that moves and causes pain in the lower abdomen. The pain can vary from minor sensation to a more intensive one. It can be triggered by walking, changing your body position, sitting on a firm surface, walking up the stairs or lifting your legs while lying down.
A bandage can help reduce the pain. Another way of fighting this type of pain is a big soft fit ball that can be used instead of a chair. A visit to an osteopath can also be of help.
Starting in the 2nd trimester, a pregnant woman might experience an abdominal tightening, a condition when the uterus feels as hard as a stone. It can last from a few seconds to up to couple of minutes and happen up to 10 times per day. Those are practice contractions (Braxton Hicks contractions). This type of contraction is not too painful, but still can cause a discomfort and scare a future mom. It’s quite normal to have Braxton Hicks contractions: this is the way your body is preparing to the baby birth.
Baby Kicks Pain
In the second part of the pregnancy baby grows very fast. It can't move freely in the uterus anymore. The baby's movements are less frequent but more intense and powerful. Those baby kicks can cause discomfort or even pain in the hypochondriac quadrant or lower abdomen (especially if the bladder is full). As unpleasant as they are these pains are natural and harmless.
When you experience painful baby kicks try to change your body position: bend forwards, get up, lie down on your side. Relax and take a couple of deep breaths, rub your belly and talk to the baby asking him to relax. Sometimes it's all what it needs.
How to Relieve Pain?
When you feel pain, sit down, pull legs forward and relax. If you rest, the pain will quickly go away.
You can also do the following:
When to See a Doctor?
Although light pain in the abdomen is normal for pregnant women, severe pain or cramps could testify of a serious problem. Severe pain can be caused by intestinal infections, food poisoning, urinary tract infection, appendicitis, kidney infection, kidney stones, gall bladder diseases or pregnancy complications (such as pre-eclampsia). If you have severe and/or persistent pain, consult your doctor immediately!
The same should be done if you have the following symptoms:
- Strong intestinal colic;
- Vaginal bleeding/spotting;
- Fever or chills;
- Dizziness and weakness.
First Time Pregnancy Excitement: Anxiety During Early Pregnancy
Getting pregnant for the first time creates a lot of expectations in the mind. You will also be filled with conflicting thoughts.
If it is a hard earned, long fought and yearned pregnancy then you will be thrilled and happy. It is quite astonishing that you are the creator of a new life. Everything looks beautiful. It will boost your morale. You will share your love, dreams, hopes and knowledge with your partner. So your day will be full of excitement and a few highs. You will want to share the good news with all your near and dear ones.
Anxiety During Early Pregnancy
Worries of miscarriage and the baby’s health are common fears in early pregnancy. If you have experienced a miscarriage earlier then you will be extra anxious and careful. This time around your doctor will be following your progress closely and carefully. Let go off your anxieties at least for a little while in the interest of your baby’s health.
Choose an area of the house where you feel stress free. Enhance it with smells, sounds and sights to make it comfortable and relaxing. Soothing light music, nature sound, aromatic candle and pleasant posters and photographs works wonders.
You may be concerned about your ability to provide and care for the child. Remember that experience teaches everybody everything.
Pelvic Pain during Pregnancy
Causes of pelvic pain
It’s obvious, baby’s growing and so are you. As your pregnancy progresses toward its end stage, you may notice pressure or pain in your pelvic area. Sometimes it’s an ache in the pelvic bones. Sometimes it’s pressure in the lower pelvis and vagina. Both are uncomfortable and can be scary.
Round ligaments can cause pelvic pain:
As your uterus grows larger during pregnancy, you may experience a dull ache or a sharp, piercing pain in your groin or pelvic area. This pelvic pain is caused by the round ligaments and called round ligament pain.
The round ligaments are strong bands of tissue that support your growing uterus. These bands of support tissue attach to the top uterus and run down to into the vagina where they attach.
Pressure on the pelvic bones by the enlarging uterus:
As pregnancy progresses the uterus continues to enlarge and move deeper into the pelvis. This places more and more pressure on the pelvis and vagina, giving you a pressure sensation that may sometimes be described as pelvic pain.
“Lightning” (baby drops into pelvis):
Pelvic pressure is very common after the baby drops into the pelvis. You many start to waddle when walking. Walking may become uncomfortable and cause pelvic pain.
Braxton-Hicks contractions are early labor pains and they are the way your body prepares for childbirth. Most women experience Braxton-Hicks as menstrual like cramping or brief tightening in the lower abdomen and pelvis. Braxton-Hicks contractions do result in pelvic discomfort or pain.
Pregnancy Health Section
You may have a urinary tract infection causing pelvic pressure and pain. Because the frequent urge to urinate is often a regular pregnancy symptom, you may not even know that you have a urinary tract infection.
Preexisting groin hernias:
A hernia in your groin may become more symptomatic for the first time during pregnancy. A groin hernia can cause pelvic discomfort, and feels similar to the round ligament pain.
Increase mobility of pelvic joints:
Pregnancy increases mobility of pelvic joints and makes the pelvic area vulnerable to pain. Tylenol will give you some relief from the pain, but it will be a persistent discomfort until after delivery.
Pubic symphysis separation:
The front bone of the pelvis is the pubic symphysis. In pregnancy the bone separates from the surround pelvic bones and can causes severe pelvic pain, and tenderness.
Pelvic girdle pain:
Pelvic pain during pregnancy that is mainly felt in your lower back and anal region is caused by the sacroiliac joint. It has been described as a stabbing pain in the buttocks and felt as far down as the knee. The pain is worsening with weight-bearing and comes and goes with many pain-free intervals.
Pelvic pain in pregnancy (SPD)
In this article
Your pelvic floor
What is symphysis pubis dysfunction?
What are the symptoms of SPD?
- Back pain, pain at the back of your pelvis or hip pain.
- Pain, along with a grinding or clicking sensation in your pubic area.
- Pain down the inside of your thighs or between your legs.
- Pain that's made worse by parting your legs, walking, going up or down stairs or moving around in bed.
- Pain that's worse at night and stops you from sleeping well. Getting up to go to the toilet in the middle of the night can be especially painful. (POGPH 2015)
SPD can occur at any time during your pregnancy or after giving birth (Keriakos et al 2011) . You may notice it for the first time during the middle of your pregnancy.
What causes SPD?
- The joints in your pelvis moving unevenly
- Changes to the way your muscles work to support your pelvic girdle joints
- One pelvic joint not working properly and causing knock-on pain in the other joints of your pelvis (POGPH 2015)
These problems mean that your pelvis is not as stable as it should be, and this is what causes SPD. Physiotherapy is the best way to treat SPD (POGPH 2015) , because it's about the relationship between your muscles and bones, rather than how lax your joints are. You're more likely to develop SPD if:
Http://www. tandurust. com/pregnancy-childbirth/first-pregnancy. html
Http://www. womenshealthcaretopics. com/Pelvic-Pain-during-Pregnancy. html
Http://www. babycentre. co. uk/a546492/pelvic-pain-in-pregnancy-spd