why do your ribs hurt during pregnancy
Changes to your body that occur during pregnancy may cause rib pain. For example, different ranges of motion are limited as your body expands. It s harder to bend forward because there s a human being in the front of you. This limitation can cause rib pain. Pregnancy puts women at a higher risk for gallstone disease. This is because of higher estrogen levels and slower emptying of the gallbladder and biliary ducts. Both of these can lead to the formation of gallstones. Up to of pregnant and postpartum women will experience biliary sludge as a result of those sluggish ducts. of women will actually develop gallstones. Many times, the sludge and accompanying gallstones don t cause any symptoms. But sometimes, the stones can be severe enough to cause pain. About
of women will need surgery postpartum to remove gallstones. The hormone relaxin is produced during pregnancy. It helps some of the muscles and ligaments literally getting more relaxed in preparation for childbirth. Relaxin may also be responsible for some of the skeletal pain that women feel during pregnancy. This includes pain in the pelvis and possibly in the ribs as your body makes room for baby. Relaxin is also responsible for relaxing part of the esophagus.
This is why pregnant women are so much more prone to heartburn. In some women, that heartburn might manifest as в you guessed it в rib pain. Rib pain during pregnancy can usually be written off as just normal discomfort. But for some women, it may have an underlying, more serious cause. For instance, pain occurring in the upper right abdomen can be a sign of liver disease, preeclampsia, or HELLP syndrome. HELLP is a life-threatening complication. Symptoms include protein in the urine and high blood pressure. Seek immediate medical attention if you are experiencing sudden, severe rib pain and have any of the following symptoms: Thereвs some evidence that pregnancy might promote liver growth for women who have cancer, or are at high risk for developing liver cancer. If youвre having severe pain under your right rib, your doctor can check for signs of a tumor. A tumor might force your liver up into your rib cage. Pregnancy also makes your blood clot more, so some women are at higher risk for blood clots. These can happen in a rare condition called Budd-Chiari syndrome. Budd-Chiari can affect the kidneys and liver. Severe rib pain should always be checked out by your doctor. Rib pain during pregnancy is usually experienced in the third trimester, although for some women it can begin even earlier.
The sensation can range from mild discomfort to strong pain. Rib pain during pregnancy is caused by pressure from the top of your growing uterus, as well as your baby kicking or punching the area. If your baby is in a breech position, the pressure from his or her head wedged underneath your ribs might be the cause of your discomfort. Sore ribs are usually felt on the side of the babyвs position and just below the breasts. Youвll probably find that your ribs are more painful when sitting, moreso when leaning forward. The fundus (the top of your uterus) is at itвs highest at around 36 weeks of pregnancy, reaching just below the breastbone. After 36 weeks, your baby drops into your pelvic cavity, in preparation for birth. This usually provides some much appreciated relief! What Can I Do To Help Relieve The Discomfort of Rib Pain? While there is not much you can do to stop a growing uterus, there are some things you can do to get some temporary relief. The below suggestions will not вcureв your soreness but may help you get that relief you need to get through until baby drops down lower. It s important to know that while you are pregnant, you cannot take many pain killer or anti-inflammatory medications.
For medications like ibuprofen, for example, the biggest risks (including some very serious) for your baby are in the first and third trimester. For unbearable pain, see your doctor or midwife about taking paracetamol (known as acetaminophen in the US) or other medications. Pharmacists can also be a great resource on what you can take, as they are usually the most up-to-date on drug information. But unless you have professional advice, avoid all medicines where possible. See our article for more information about. Sit up straight and donвt hunch over в create more room, while supporting your back Avoid sitting down for too long в every two hours (or less if it helps), get up and take a stretch break or short walk A nice hot shower on your back (be sensible with this one в not too hot! ) Exercises that help you stretch out and support your body, like swimming Cut out inflammation causing foods which can make you feel worse most importantly, sugar and grains. Reducing these two will also significantly reduce your risk of. Stretch! Here is a really effective exercise to give you temporary relief, as shared by midwife, Alan Rooney: Stand facing a wall.
With your feet 40 centimetres from the wall, cross your arms in front of your face. Then lean your crossed arms on the wall sliding them up the wall above your head and stretching yourself up as far as possible. Hold the position for as long as comfortable. This lifts the diaphragm and rib cage up off the uterus and really provides effective, temporary relief, especially if the pain is caused by a breech baby s hard little head wedged under your ribs. It s also a great idea to visit your complementary health practitioner if you havenвt already. Depending on which therapy you prefer, an,В В orВ В can help ease rib pain during pregnancy. At the same time, your therapistВ can see how your body is going overall, and can detect any other areas which may be a problem even contributing to your aches and pains if something is out of balance elsewhere. Can Anything Stop Rib Pain During Pregnancy? Aside from all that, there is only one magic pill that will take the rib pain away в giving birth! Sorry to tease, but I have been there myself and the only thing that completely fixed my sore ribs was giving birth. As soon as my gorgeous girl was born, it completely disappeared.
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