10 Tips to Relieve Back Pain During Pregnancy

As a pregnant woman’s belly grows, a lot of other things are happening simultaneously. More specifically, the physical and hormonal changes that the body is undergoing in all stages of pregnancy will most often affect the lower back. This happens because as the belly expands, ligaments in the hips and pelvis will loosen, leading to a change in the center of gravity. Weight gain and emotional stress can also can put pressure cause muscle tension, such as back pain or back spasms. From posture to healthy habits and exercises, here are 10 tips to ease or prevent back pain during pregnancy. 

1. Stay active and practice good posture - Regular exercise strengthens muscles and boosts flexibility that can ease the stress on your spine. Safe exercises include walking, swimming, stationary cycling, and pregnancy yoga. 

2. Don’t lift or lift with good form - As your pregnancy progresses and if your back is bothering you, avoid lifting heavy objects. If you must lift objects, make sure to bend your knees and keep your chest up instead of leaning forward. This will put less pressure on your back, keeping it safe throughout your pregnancy.

3. Tilt your pelvis - While you are standing and doing daily activities, draw the belly in and pull your tailbone down as a part of keeping your back healthy. This can also aid in labor and delivery, creating the best pathway for the baby during a vaginal delivery.

4. Wear a pelvic support belt -  Similar to bodybuilders and athletes tackling bigger weights, there are various belts that support the pelvis and lower back. Bracoo’s maternity belt is a good option as if provides pain relief, stability, and gentle support without restricting your movement during and post-pregnancy.

5. Limit sitting and get up - It’s much easier said than done, but if you are required to sit at your job, try and get up to move around as much as you can to prevent slouching and back pain. Sitting for long periods of time when you are expecting can cause postural  chronic pain as well as cardiovascular disease. 

6. Lie on your side with a pregnancy pillow between your knees - Starting in your second trimester, doctors recommend to lie on your side to rest or sleep rather than on your back. Placing a pregnancy pillow between your legs will relax your lower back and help your lumbar spine decompress. 

7. Wear maternity athletic wear for workouts - As your belly grow bigger, you will need to replace some of your existing workout gear with maternity apparel that will keep your back healthy. There are specific maternity athletic lines that has a built-in mom-band that is invisible but supportive so you don’t have to worry about straining your back during prenatal yoga. 

8. Lie down with your legs up the wall - Legs up the wall is a restorative yoga pose that is beneficial to pregnant mothers not only for lower back pain relief but also to increase blood circulation to ease the feet from swelling. Lie on your back and put a blanket on the floor directly under your hips. Place your hips and sacrum on it as you lift your legs against the wall. Close your eyes, turn your palms up, relax your legs and stay for 10 minutes. 

9. Practice the Bird Dog exercise - To strengthen your core during pregnancy, do the “Bird Dog”: extend opposite arm and leg on all fours Move slowly and hold for a few seconds at full extension. Alternate sides and do up to 3 sets of 15 reps on each side.

10. Visit an acupuncturist and/or chiropractor - Explore prenatal care health practices like acupuncture sessions or monthly chiropractic appointments to ensure that your physical health is aligned and balanced to prepare your body for labor.