Mild cramping during early pregnancy is fairly common. While it can be a frightening feeling to a newly pregnant woman, it is often not a sign of miscarriage. Your newly pregnant body must go through many changes. In the early weeks of pregnancy, many women experience slight cramping as their body adjusts to the pregnancy. Changes in the uterus as the baby implants can create cramping that feels similar to menstrual cramps. If you are concerned that your cramping is not normal or you experience severe cramping, contact your doctor.
When to Call the Doctor
Heavy cramping or cramping that is combined with bleeding should be checked out by your doctor. If you are experiencing a miscarriage, there is likely very little that your doctor can do to prevent it, but he can check and see if there is another cause for the bleeding. According to the Mayo Clinic, you might have several possible causes of bleeding during early pregnancy, which include ectopic pregnancy, implantation bleeding, miscarriage, a cervical infection or a molar pregnancy. Light bleeding may be a sign of cervical irritation as a result of the changes that happen during early pregnancy and should decrease as the pregnancy progresses further.
Causes of Cramping
Cramping during early pregnancy can feel like menstrual cramps and is generally caused by the changes that happen as your body adjusts to being pregnant, according to the American Pregnancy website. Often, the cramping will decrease after the first few weeks of pregnancy, but many women experience cramping throughout pregnancy. It is not a cause for concern unless the cramping increases or is accompanied by bleeding. Cramping may increase after strenuous exercise. If you notice an increase in cramping after an activity, it is best to stop what you are doing and consult your doctor.
Treat Mild Cramping
Mild cramping in early pregnancy is often relieved by getting extra rest and avoiding strenuous activity until the cramping stops. Lying down on your side with your knees curled up into your chest may help alleviate some of the cramps’ severity. Soaking in a warm bath may also help relax your muscles and relieve some cramping. Most cramping will decrease after the first few weeks of pregnancy as your body adjusts to its new pregnant state, but some women may experience cramping and Braxton-Hicks contractions throughout pregnancy. Cramping that is severe enough to require pain medication should be brought to your doctor’s attention to rule out any of the more serious causes of cramping in early pregnancy.