It's no secret that pregnancy comes with its own unique set of aches and pains. For some women, those aches are exaggerated through no fault of their own. If you're dealing with lower back pain, it could be a common pregnancy woe or it might be something diagnosable, like sciatic nerve pain. Although it can be incredibly painful, there are a few ways to deal with pregnancy sciatica that you should know about to keep your pain and discomfort at a minimum.
According to Baby Center, sciatica is related to a group of problems, rather than a single issue. The term refers to inflammation or pressure on their back, which causes their sciatic nerve to react. It can be mild to severe, but any extra lower back pain during pregnancy is especially difficult.
The Cleveland Clinic noted that as your center of gravity shifts and your baby grows during pregnancy, you're especially liable to back pain. The pain can be a shooting, sharp pain when you twist or move, or even a widespread burning pain in your lower back. Sciatica is experienced in many different ways and for different reasons, but knowing how to handle it during pregnancy will be especially helpful.
1. Practice Prenatal Yoga
According to Healthline, doing prenatal yoga is one of the most effective ways to treat sciatica and back pain of any kind (not to mention it's super cheap.) Although pregnancy may limit your flexibility, there are still many stretches targeting your lower back that will help ease the pain.
2. Alternate Heat And Ice
Spine Health noted that using heat and ice treatment for sciatica can be effective for relieving inflammation and increasing blood circulation. The article suggested that using ice when the pain is the most intense or sharp is best for decreasing inflammation. Heat should be used after the pain has lessened, to encourage circulation and numb the area.
3. Take A Warm Shower
Similar to using a heating pad, the aforementioned Healthline article noted that taking a warm — but not too hot — shower can help loosen up your muscles that may be inflamed.
4. Enlist Your Partner For Back Rubs
After your warm shower or your hot-cold treatment, have your partner massage your back gently. Make sure they spread out the pressure to, hopefully, relieve some of the pain.
5. Swap Out Your Shoes
According to Parents, your shoes might be adding to your back pain. Wearing high heels or shoes will minimal arch support are notoriously bad choices when it comes to comfort and back support. Instead, opt for tennis shoes with insoles, or buy a pair of inserts for your favorite shoes.
6. Sleep With Support
Although sleeping on your back might be frowned upon during pregnancy, you can still sleep in positions that will aid in relieving pressure from your sciatic nerve. Sleeping on your side with a supportive pillow between your legs and supporting your belly is the best sleep position for back pain, according to the American Pregnancy Association (APA).
7. Practice Good Posture
The Mayo Clinic suggested focusing on your posture during your pregnancy as an added precaution against back pain. As hard as it may be, try to stand up straight, with your shoulders and back relaxed, and your stomach muscles engaged.