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Body Changes and Discomfort during Pregnancy

Updated: May 12


The body change and discomforts are attached with every pregnancy. Some of the discomforts and symptoms are visible during the early trimester whereas some continue until the last day of the pregnancy. Therefore, pregnancy is not a comfortable journey, but, through this blog, you can find some useful information on every common discomfort and symptom of pregnancy, so that you can find out what you can do to feel better.


Body Ache

Once the uterus starts growing, the pressure starts coming from the baby's head, increased weight and from the loosened joints. Hence, the body starts aching mainly from the back, abdomen, groin area, and thighs. Some of the pregnant woman also complains of the pain that moves from the lower; back to the leg and knee. This happens when uterus gives pressure to the sciatic nerve and this particular condition is known as Sciatica.


You can do this to feel better:

  • Lie down.

  • Rest.

  • Apply heat from back. Remember do not use extremely hot bags. The temperature should be bearable and comfortable.

Breast Changes

During the early trimester of your pregnancy, you can feel that your breasts are getting more firm, fuller and getting increased in their size. This is due to the hormone changes which prepare your breasts for breastfeeding. Please do not mistake it with any sort of breast lump. If you notice any lump, talk to your doctor immediately.


And during the last trimester, you may observe that the breasts are leaking colostrum. Colostrum is a thick yellow fluid which is called the first milk for a baby. It contains antibodies that protect the newborn from infection.


You can do this to feel better:

  • Start using maternity/nursing bra which provides good support.

  • Use bra pads for better leakage absorption.

Constipation

Many pregnant women also complain about constipation during their term. It indicates hard and dry stools accompanied by painful bowel movements. It is due to the hormonal changes which happen during the pregnancy and it slow downs the digestion process leaving a pregnant woman constipated. In addition to this, the pressure of growing uterus also becomes one of the reasons behind constipation.


You can do this to feel better:

  • Drink sufficient amount of water daily.

  • Prefer fibre-rich foods like wholegrain cereals, broccoli, carrots, melon, sweetcorn, oranges etc.

  • Stay physically active.


Dizziness

Dizziness or the feeling of lightheaded is also one of the discomforts faced during pregnancy. Although, fainting is not so common, still call your doctor if you feel faint or abdominal pain. According to the experts, the growth of blood vessels and the increased need for food make a pregnant woman dizzy and lightheaded.


You can do this to feel better:

  • Do not rush for anything. Stand up slowly and calmly.

  • Do not skip meals, as this can make you weaker.

  • Try to relax more, wear comfortable clothing and lie down on your left side.



Heartburn

Heartburn is one of the most common discomforts experienced by more than 50% of pregnant women during their second and third trimester of the pregnancy. It is painful and uncomfortable and often called 'acid reflux'. It is caused because the growing uterus pushes the gastric acid of your stomach to the esophagus.


You can do this to feel better:

  • Prefer small meals at particular intervals rather than big meals. This will not keep your stomach too full to create acid reflux.

  • Eat prior 2-3 hours of bedtime.

  • Avoid oily or spicy foods as they can aggravate your discomfort.

  • There are antacids, which are safe to be taken during pregnancy. But do not forget to consult with the doctor first, before consuming any antacid.



Insomnia / Sleeplessness


The sleeplessness or insomnia is one of the most common symptoms which is experienced by 78% of pregnant women. (Sources: The National Sleep Foundation’s 1998 Women and Sleep poll ). Insomnia includes a hard time falling asleep. It can occur due to several reasons, like

  • Hormonal changes

  • Frequent Urination

  • Nausea

  • Backache and other pregnancy-related pains.


You can do this to feel better:

  • Avoid lying down on your back for prolonged hours as it leads to backache. Prefer lying down to your left side. It is good for the fetus too.

  • Use comfortable pillows to feel relaxed and stress-free.

  • Although it is advised to drink plenty of fluids throughout the day, you should not drink water prior 2 hours of your bedtime.

  • Avoid spicy and oily foods to prevent heartburn.

  • Do not force yourself to sleep; read some good books, or you can meditate.


Varicose Veins

Blood volume increases during pregnancy which gives pressure to the veins making them enlarged. Usually, it is hereditary and can be seen on thighs or on the backside of the calves of the leg. It looks like swollen veins behind the skin and is dark blue or purple in colour.


You can do this to feel better:

  • Move around often whenever it is possible and refrain from sitting in one place or standing for a longer duration.

  • Avoid sitting in a cross legs position as it can prevent proper blood circulation in legs.

  • Stay active and exercise regularly.

  • Wear support hose but avoid wearing tight clothing.


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Useful Tips to help you with Morning Sickness


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