Is Back Pain & Abdominal Pain Normal During Pregnancy

Dr Pooja Mittal

Created by Dr Pooja Mittal
Updated on Oct 14, 2020

Reviewed by Expert panel

As you start the journey of pregnancy, you will undergo a lot of changes; both emotionally and physically. Some changes may be subtle, some more obvious and some will cause you problems. One such common problem is lower or upper back pain. Back pain is one of the most common symptoms that pregnant women complain of. In some women, it starts early in pregnancy and remains as they progress through the nine months. In other women, it worsens and continues to hinder them even after the baby is born. Some women experience upper back pain during pregnancy, while some experience lowers back pain.

Causes of Lower Back Pain in Pregnancy

There are many possible reasons why lower back pain happens in pregnancy. Here are some of the more likely causes...

  • Weight Gain: During a healthy pregnancy, women typically gain between 25 and 35 pounds. The spine has to support that weight. That can cause lower back pain. The weight of the growing baby and uterus also puts pressure on the blood vessels and nerves in the pelvis and back

  • Posture Changes: Pregnancy shifts your center of gravity. As a result, you may gradually -- even without noticing -- begin to adjust your posture and the way you move. This may result in back pain or strain

  • Hormone Changes: In pregnancy, your body makes a hormone called relaxin that allows ligaments in the pelvic area to relax and the joints to become looser in preparation for the birth process. The same hormone can cause ligaments that support the spine to loosen, leading to instability and pain

  • Muscle Separation: As the uterus expands, two parallel sheets of muscles (the rectal abdominal muscles), which run from the rib cage to the pubic bone, may separate along the center seam. This separation may worsen back pain

  • Stress: Emotional stress can cause muscle tension in the back, which may be felt as back pain or back spasms. You may find that you experience an increase in back pain during stressful periods of your pregnancy. 

Watch the video as our Senior Gynaecologist Dr Pooja Mittal expains here.

 Watch the entire video on  Women's Health & Complications During Pregnancy.

This content has been checked & validated by Doctors and Experts of the parentune Expert panel. Our panel consists of Neonatologist, Gynecologist, Peadiatrician, Nutritionist, Child Counselor, Education & Learning Expert, Physiotherapist, Learning disability Expert and Developmental Pead.

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