Unfortunately, I’ve heard many women complain about pelvic pain during pregnancy and just dismiss the symptoms. Often women believe the myth that “It’s just part of pregnancy.” About 1 out of 5 pregnant women have pregnancy-related pelvic girdle pain, also known as pelvic pain.
The truth is, your body is changing every day, and you can feel those changes become even greater as your pregnancy progresses. These daily changes can result in new pulls on your body and muscles. Your body is trying to adjust and overworking to protect itself. Over time, the muscle tension produces pain. Pregnancy pain is different from Vaginal Pressure. You can read about Vaginal Pressure Here
The pregnant posture is real, and it’s contributing to pain. With the ever-growing baby, your body feels more imbalanced with greater stretch on the abdominals, back muscles overcompensating and muscle tension increasing. Your body is trying to function in a “new normal”.
There is a real need to calm the body down and keep moving. Your posture, breathing, and movement impact how you feel.
What are some ways to relieve pelvic pain in pregnancy?
Theraball/Exercise Ball. The most commonly use size is 65cm. The size is correct for you by assessing the hip/knee/ankle angle. It should be 90 degrees angle or greater at the knees and hips. Your hips can be a bit higher than your knees, but hips should not be lower than knees.
For safety, place the theraball in a corner, several inches away from the wall. Get comfortable with sitting first, keeping your hands on the wall for support.
Use this time on the theraball to keep the mobility in your pelvis.
1. Hip Circles (keep shoulders steady and roll hips in a circle)
2. Pelvic Tilts (roll from pregnant posture to slumped position)
3. Figure 8 patterns. (hips moving left to right in figure 8 patterns)
Repeat these patterns in both directions. If you feel tight in one part of the movement, focus on that area. Breathe and feel the muscles release.
Pillows will help decrease your pelvic girdle pain in pregnancy. Lots of pillows! Trying to allow your body to rest in a neutral position, will allow the body to calm down. If you are tense and tight at night, you will wake up with pain.
Use a body pillow and then add more pillows! Place a pillow under the belly. Pillows need to be between the knees and extend down to the ankles. When the top leg drops down, to meet the bottom leg, there’s more tension in the pelvis. And you guessed it, the result is muscle tension and pain.
Aquatic Exercise Get in the water! It’s amazing to take the weight off the body. Pregnant women are amazed at the difference they feel. The exercises can help you reduce pelvic pain during pregnancy.
Walking forward, backward, and sideways is a simple way to exercise. Join a pregnancy water exercise class. It’s worth the time and effort to get in the water. Your body will thank you.
Sitting Breaks will give your entire body time to rest throughout the day. Listen to your body.
Don’t assume your only option is “grin and bear it.”
Also, don’t forget the amazing benefits of seeing a pelvic floor physical therapist. I wish I could see every pregnant woman for at least one visit. There are so many tricks and tips for feeling better and functioning easier during your pregnancy. Please don’t believe the myth that pain in pregnancy is normal and that there’s nothing that can be done!
Take the simple steps to healing and reduce your pelvic pain during pregnancy.