If you are expecting and pregnancy back pain, you are in good company for back pain is a common side effect. As your body goes through many changes and your baby grows, your center of gravity shifts, placing more strain on the back muscles. This usually begins during the latter half of pregnancy. Reasons for this discomfort include weight gain, hormonal changes, and stress.
Here are some ways to deal with pregnancy back pain:
- Standing — One of the best ways to alleviate this back pain is improving posture. Since the center of gravity has shifted forward with the pregnancy, the natural reaction is to lean back to help maintain balance. Remember to keep your chest high and shoulders back.
- Sitting — When sitting, use a chair that supports your back or a small pillow to fortify your lower back.
- Sleeping — New guidelines recommend that pregnant women sleep on their sides instead of their backs. Propping with pillows and one placed between your legs with knees bent will help keep your spine in proper alignment.
- Complementary therapies — Ask your medical provider before beginning any exercise program or complementary therapy. Prenatal yoga is popular for it strengthens muscles, improves flexibility, and relieves stress while focusing on mindful breathing. Acupuncture and acupressure both stimulate pressure points in the body that correspond to pain centers. The same can be said for prenatal massage. Studies show that regular prenatal massage relieves pain and helps with depression and anxiety.
- Maternity belts — Worn during pregnancy, maternity belts redistribute the weight around the body, relieving pain in the lower back. Belly bands also reduce discomfort during physical activity and help correct posture. Even postpartum, wearing a maternity belt like the Embracing Belly Boostier with the wide section in front can help bring together and strengthen abdominal muscles weakened during pregnancy. Remember to always consult your physician before wearing any compression devices.
Sibling Tips – Young Children May Need Special Transition Help From You
It’s exciting to bring a new addition home to the family! But if you already have a young child at home, there’s going to be a period of transition. Here are some sibling tips to help make that adaptation period easier, both before and after you bring the baby home.
Choose the timing of announcing your pregnancy to your older child carefully. Toddlers have little understanding of linear time. Months can seem like years. Give them a milestone to attach your due date to, such as, “The baby will be here the week after your birthday.”
Give your older child age-appropriate information about the pregnancy. You can expect them to ask questions, but an overdose of facts will confuse them.
Here’s one of our favorite sibling tips: involve the older sibling in preparing for the baby. Let them pick items for the nursery. Encourage them to draw pictures for their new sibling, and place it in an focal point in the room. Having them play a part of the process will help them feel grounded.
Mentally prepare your child for the arrival of a baby. Show them pictures of themselves when they were babies. Let them know that everyone was a baby at some point, and how fortunate the baby is to have them as an older brother (or sister). Read them books about being a big brother or sister. You can find a great list of helpful books here.
Set expectations for your older child about the baby’s arrival. Help them understand that there will be lots of crying and sleeping before the baby will be ready to play with them.
Affirm to your older child the important role they will play in the baby’s life. Your older child may be nervous about their role in the family after the baby arrives.
The more you can do to assure your older child that they are still loved, the smoother the transition will be. That’s at the heart of all our sibling tips today.
While you are looking over these tips aimed at supporting your family when older siblings are involved, take a look at our support page to make sure your back has the right support, too!