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When to see a back pain doctor? By Tommy Hoffman, Licensed Physical Therapist

Why is There Back Pain During Pregnancy?

Back pain pregnancy is about feeling symptoms of lower back pain associated with a pregnancy that is dependent soley on the pregnancy itself. Back pain pregnancy is not usually the same back pain associated with a herniated or bulging disc.

However, it is not uncommon to experience back pain pregnancy, especially as pre-existing conditions such as bulging discs or herniated discs have been previously diagnosed.  Women with a history of back pain will have a greater predisposition for lower back pain symptoms during pregnancy.  Often, symptoms of sciatica will coincide with back pain thus making the experience an even more uncomfortable one.

How to Get Relief During Back Pain Pregnancy?

Top four underlying reasons for back pain pregnancy and with solutions:

1. Reason One for back pain pregnancy: Increased anterior pelvic tilt.  Excessive lumbar lordosis caused by an increased anterior pelvic tilt alters proper lumbar spinal segment alignment.

Solution for this type of back pain pregnancy: Observe proper posture during sitting, standing, and sleeping positions.  Proper loading of the spine during lifting and carrying activities will also be of benefit creating less pain and inflammation around the lower back region.

2. Reason two for back pain pregnancy: Increased weight gain.  Increased weight gain caused by the pregnancy creates more strain on the lower back and its surrounding muscles.

Solution for this type of back pain pregnancy: Best to be pre-emptive and avoid excessive weight gain in the first place while maintaining optimal health for you and your child.  There is an acceptable amount of weight gain you should expect during pregnancy.  Discuss the amount of normal weight gain you should expect with your physician and try to adhere to a healthy diet.

3. Reason three for back pain pregnancy: Ligamentous laxity.  Ligaments hold bone to bone, and during pregnancy a release of the hormone relaxin by the body creates ligamentous laxity.  This may lead to temporary spinal instability and joint(s) irritation.   

Solution for this type of back pain pregnancy: Reduction in strenuous activity.  Avoid strenuous prolonged activity and split up any given task into parts in order to keep from “over doing it”.  Also, use of lumbar support belts designed with the pregnant women in mind.  These support belts provide increased stability to the lower back region.

4. Reason four for back pain pregnancy: Abdominal weakness.  As abdominal muscles become stretched, they also become weaker.  Core stability will become compromised and puts the lower back at greater risk to injury.

Solution for this type of back pain pregnancy: Abdominal strengthening and Kegal exercises.  Abdominal strengthening should focus primarily on the transverse abdominis which serves as the lower backs “natural” corset.  Kegal exercises are done to strengthen muscles of the pelvic floor.  In general, do not start any new exercise program unless directed by your physician.

Since your pregnancy is temporary, much if not all of your back pain symptoms related to the pregnancy will dissipate over time after the birth of the infant child.  In this instance, time truly is on your side.  In the meanwhile, follow the four "back pain pregnancy" solutions suggested above for greater relief and possible elimination of back pain symptoms related to your pregnancy.

Please remember to follow the advice of your physician for the proper diagnosis and treatment of your back pain pregnancy condition.


Good Luck,

Tommy Hoffman


"Don't spend more time with back pain pregnancy by not finding out the truth today!"

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