I am 5 months pregnant. Almost every morning I wake up with severe back pain. Is there a way to prevent this?
Back pain is an incredibly common ailment. It affects millions of Americans daily. Unfortunately, pregnancy can cause low back pain. During pregnancy, connections between the pelvic bones soften and the posture shifts. The increasing weight of the uterus and of the body puts more stress on back discs, spine, and muscles. Toward the end of pregnancy, most women will have gained about 30 pounds, which clearly stresses the back.
The good news is that much low back pain can be treated with simple measures. First of all, you should not attempt to work as hard as usual as your pregnancy progresses. It may be helpful to rest more and to avoid prolonged standing or sitting at a desk.
Second, you should start a regular regimen of stretching and exercise. Gentle stretching, such as yoga, and moderate exercise, such as swimming, are often helpful. Many pregnant women enjoy swimming as the water “takes the weight away.”
Third, you may benefit from some daily gentle massage by your partner, a friend, or a masseuse attuned to the needs of the pregnant woman. Many medications commonly prescribed for low back pain should be avoided during pregnancy.
Talk to your doctor about what approaches are safe and might work for you.