Pregnancy…an interesting 9-10 months on your life that brings about all kinds of body changes. Some of the changes are welcome (hello big boobies!), some are tolerated, and some are just plain painful! I, like many pregnant women experienced back pain during pregnancy and have worked hard to find a fix! I’m excited to share with you how to fix back pain during pregnancy, 5 tips that actually worked for me.
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Let me start by explaining why I am kind of an expert on handling back pain. When I was 16 years old I was playing flag football. The game turned a little aggressive and a tackle left me with a fractured L4 vertebrae. It took several weeks for me to visit a doctor about the pain, and an x-ray confirmed the fracture. It also showed a tumor on the L4 that was causing pain as well. There is no fix for the area, so having a back ache has been my daily battle for years! It was definitely a concern when I found out I was pregnant, was it going to aggravate the daily pain as my belly grew? I had no way of knowing until my belly truly did grow.
At 20 weeks my belly finally started to poke out. And has the weight started to distribute to the front of my body, the pain started to get worse. It was a low, achy pain that was from my hips as well as my lower back. It would keep me at wake at night and make me want to cry at times. All mamas that are feeling that kind of pain, I am SO SORRY! It is so irritating! It’s not fair enough that your body has been taken over by another living being, but now your suffering and barely able to take medicine for pain relief…so not fair!
I decided that I needed to find a routine that would work for me and help me cope with and manage the back pain. I came up with 5 tips that really did help me!
(Please note, these worked for me until I was put on bed rest from pre-term labor, but I know that they would have continued to help me right up until the end if I could have still used tips 1 and 4)
1) Get Moving
I know it can seem counter productive, when you want to just wallow in self pity and ache, but nothing helped my pain as much as movement! If you work in a sedentary job (desk life), make time during your day to MOVE! I’m not talking about running a marathon, I mean a simple 15-20 minute walk. Take your lunch break and get your legs moving! I really helped me some much, I would walk for a mile or 2 and after the first day or two of implementing a walk into my daily routine, the pain started to ease. I did notice on days that I didn’t get a walk in my hips and back would ache worse.
2) Get Support
Secondly, the BEST purchase I made to help with back pain was a belly support! My body was not used to having weight on the front, so each weeks growth made the pain worse. It felt like my hips and lower back might just fall off at times. MISERABLE!
I decided to purchase a belly support tank because it promised to fix two problems with one product. 1, ease back pain and 2, allow me to use my pre-pregnancy wardrobe longer. After much research I landed on the Blanqi Bodystyler Maternity Support Undergarment.
The tank is long! It actually fits my 6ft tall frame, which I was kind of surprised by! I will admit that as me belly got larger and larger it did dig into my shoulders because I was pulling it down so far on the bottom to allow for the best support. When I first put this tank on I honestly felt relief immediately, it’s like it hugged my body, pulled weight off my back and lifted my belly!
I was also able to wear my regular jeans with this tank and just left them unzipped under that band at the bottom. It was so tight (in a good way) that it held my jeans in place and hid the fact they weren’t anywhere close to being buttoned.
I would highly recommend a Blanqi Bodystyler Maternity Support Undergarment to help relieve back pain! On days I didn’t wear the support tank the back pain was ALWAYS worse at night. There were even nights that I slept in this tank because the pressure on my hips and back was too much.
3) Drink, Drink, DRINK!
Ok, this one might sound funny, but staying as hydrated as possible during my pregnancy actually helped with my back pain. I would drink a gallon of lemon water during my second and third trimester. I would fill a gallon pitcher with water at the beginning of the day, squeeze one lemon in the water, mix it up and pour it over ice through out the day. I truly believe that the lemon kept me from bloating/retaining too much fluid, which in turn helped me to not gain TOO much weight and kept the pain down.
4) Take A Bath!
This is my favorite! Take a bath! Every time I thought my hips were going to fall off, and my back was going to break (until I went into preterm labor) I would draw a warm bath, pour a cup or two of Epson salt in and soak it up. Epson salt helps with aches and pains so much! This Dr. Teals salt is my favorite. It comes in different scenes if you want a little aromatherapy too. I went through almost a bag a week, and it helped me feel so much better after each soak.
If you are feeling like your back is falling off of your body I would highly recommend taking a soak with Epson Salt ASAP!
5) Mindful Sleeping Positions
My last tips for handling back pain in pregnancy is to not be stubborn about making yourself comfortable while sleeping. I was convinced I didn’t need to buy a special pillow for sleeping during pregnancy. I was trying to be budget conscious, and a pillow just didn’t fit into my plan. I would surround myself with pillows at night, adjusting them under my belly, wedging them behind my back and tucking them between my legs. It would spend half the night readjusting and usually would wake up irritated and chucking a pillow or two across the room in frustration. My husband would joke that I would build a wall of pillows to keep him from touching me while pregnant (that wasn’t true but I can see why he would think that).
It wasn’t until a friend let me borrow their pregnancy pillow that I realized that I had been torturing myself needlessly for months just to save a few bucks. It was so worth it to actually have the back and belly support at night. Once I was put on bed rest I wasn’t able to live without my own pillow. I chose this one because it really didn’t break the bank and had great reviews. It was so worth it!
Don’t be like me and hold out until almost the end to get the benefits of this pillow!
My lovely pregnant friends, back pain during pregnancy is REAL! I know the struggle. I hope that my tips can help you as much as they helped me during pregnancy! Let me know if you have any tips that worked particularly well for you, I would love to hear about them!