Five recommendations to relieve your baby back

When you are pregnant, it’s important to make your body’s health a priority to help protect you and your baby. Carrying a baby for 40 weeks can put tremendous strain on a woman’s back due to:

  • Extra body weight gained during pregnancy, which can shift a woman’s center of gravity and cause poor posture
  • The body’s production of hormones that help loosen a woman’s ligaments, thereby making them less sturdy and less able to support the body normally

Fortunately, there are ways to reduce back pain due to pregnancy. Here are five activities you can incorporate into your daily routine to help soothe an aching back:

  • Exercise. You can increase your strength and flexibility with frequent physical activity, lessening the likelihood of body aches and pains. Try to incorporate light exercise into your daily routine.
  • Focus on posture. Pregnancy can often result in poor posture due to the tremendous shift in a woman’s weight and distribution. You can make a few adjustments to improve your posture, such as sitting up straight with your back supported at a desk, walking with your shoulders back, and not hunching over while standing.
  • Lift with your legs. Pregnant women are advised against lifting heavy objects. However, even when picking up usual items, you should rely on the strength of your legs so that you avoid straining your back.
  • Try prenatal yoga. Another cause of back pain can be the stress during pregnancy. Taking a yoga class is one way you can relax, boost your mood, and get gentle exercise to help strengthen your muscles.  
  • Get a massage. A relaxing prenatal massage can help to reduce your stress levels by calming your mood and encouraging blood circulation.

These suggestions can also be incorporated into your life after the birth of your baby so that you can continue to feel strong postpartum—because the heavy lifting does not stop once the baby is born. 

Sources

Brigham and Women’s Hospital, “Back Pain in Pregnancy,” accessed January 15, 2014, http://healthlibrary.brighamandwomens.org/HealthCenters/Pregnancy/ThirdTrimester/134,52.

Mayo Clinic, “Back Pain During Pregnancy,” accessed January 15, 2014, http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/pregnancy/HQ00302.

Parents.com, “How Do I Help Pregnancy Back Pains?” accessed January 15, 2014, http://www.parents.com/advice/pregnancy-birth/my-pregnant-body/how-do-i-help-pregnancy-back-pains/.

WebMD, “Back Pain in Pregnancy,” accessed January 15, 2014, http://www.webmd.com/baby/guide/back-pain-in-pregnancy.

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