As women progress through their pregnancies, many find that their once-fluid joints become stiff and painful. This natural pregnancy-related discomfort is due to an assortment of factors related to the mom’s growing frame and changing body. In most cases, this discomfort is minor and can be dealt with with merely a few modifications to her daily activity schedule.
Added Joint Pressure
As WebMD reports, the primary factor that causes moms-to-be to experience joint discomfort is the increased forces that their joints must bear. As pregnant women’s frames grow, their tender joints must handle the extra impact that this increased weight creates. Because joint pain in pregnant women is most commonly seen in weight-bearing joints, hips and ankles are the joints that generally give pregnant women the most difficulties.
Achiness with Fatigue
In some cases, joint discomfort is not due to weight-related issues but is instead a side effect of the fatigue that commonly accompanies pregnancy. Because their bodies are busy undertaking the task of growing a baby, these moms-to-be often lack the pep in their step they had prior to pregnancy. Along with this extra sleepiness can come a general joint aching. Joint pain due to fatigue generally diminishes rapidly after the baby is born and mom returns to her normally energetic state.
One of the easiest ways to deal with joint pain is to rest. If you attempt to push yourself too hard, you will likely cause new, or increase the severity of current, joint pain. Make sure to get your eight hours of sleep each night. Also, if you find yourself becoming fatigued, take a rest and get off your feet during the day.
Put your Partner to Work
Your pregnancy-related joint pain is a great reason to request some extra attention from your partner. Ask your spouse to massage your achy joints. This practice not only will likely reduce some of the pressure and pain that you feel in your joints, but it also gives you and your partner some quiet time to bond as you move through your pregnancy.
Exercise for Pain Prevention
While a logical response to joint pain is to stop exercising, doing so may only make the pain worse. As WebMD reports, engaging in moderate exercise during pregnancy is a great way to keep your joints loose and pain free. Additionally, putting some effort into exercise may result in shorter labor or faster after-baby bounce back, making the practice even more worth your time.