St. Luke's Hospital
Main Number: 314-434-1500 Emergency Dept: 314-205-6990 Patient Billing: 888-924-9200
Find a Physician Payment Options Locations & Directions
Follow us on: facebook twitter Mobile Email Page Email Page Print Page Print Page Increase Font Size Decrease Font Size Font Size
America's 50 Best Hospitals
Meet the Doctor
Spirit of Women
Community Health Needs Assessment
Home > Health Information

Multimedia Encyclopedia

    Print-Friendly
    Bookmarks

    Aches and pains during pregnancy

    Growing a baby is hard work. Your body will go through a lot of changes as your baby grows and your hormones change. Along with the other common symptoms during pregnancy, you will often notice new aches and pains.

    Headaches

    Headaches are common during pregnancy. Before you take medicine, ask your health care provider if it is safe to take. Other than medicine, relaxation techniques may help.

    Headaches can be a sign of preeclampsia (high blood pressure during pregnancy). If your headaches get worse, and they don't go away easily when you take Tylenol and rest, especially toward the end of your pregnancy, tell your doctor.

    Pain in Your Lower Abdomen (Belly) or Groin

    You may feel stretching or pain in your lower belly during pregnancy, usually on one side or the other. This happens when ligaments and muscles around your uterus start to stretch.

    Most often, it happens between 18 and 24 weeks. When you feel stretching or pain, move slowly or change positions.

    Numbness and Tingling

    As your uterus grows, it may press on the nerves in your legs. This may cause some numbness and tingling (feeling of pins and needles) in your legs and toes. This is normal and will go away after you give birth (it may take a few weeks to months).

    You may also have numbness or tingling in your fingers and hands. You may notice it more often when you wake up in the morning. This also goes away after you give birth, though, again, not always right away.

    If it is uncomfortable, you can wear a brace at night. Ask your health care provider where to get one.

    Backache

    Pregnancy strains your back and posture. To avoid or reduce backaches, you can:

    • Wear low-heeled shoes.
    • Sleep on your side with a pillow between your legs.
    • Sit in a chair with good back support.
    • Don't stand for too long.
    • Bend your knees when picking things up. Don't bend at the waist.
    • Don't lift heavy objects.
    • Use heat or cold on the sore part of your back.
    • Have someone massage or rub the sore part of your back. If you go to a professional massage therapist, let him or her know you are pregnant.
    • Do back exercises that your doctor suggests.

    Leg Aches and Pains

    The extra weight you carry when you are pregnant can make your legs and back hurt.

    Your body will also make a hormone that loosens ligaments throughout your body to prepare it for childbirth. However, these looser ligaments are more easily injured, most often in your back, so be careful when you lift and exercise.

    Leg cramps are common in the last months of pregnancy. Sometimes stretching your legs before bed will reduce the cramps. Your doctor can show you how to safely stretch.

    Watch for pain and swelling in one leg, but not the other. This can be a sign of a blood clot. Let your health care provider know if this happens.

    BACK TO TOP

          A Closer Look

            Self Care

            Tests for Aches and pains during pregnancy

              Review Date: 8/15/2012

              Reviewed By: Susan Storck, MD, FACOG, Chief, Eastside Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Group Health Cooperative of Puget Sound, Bellevue, Washington; Clinical Teaching Faculty, Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M. Health Solutions, Ebix, Inc.

              The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Links to other sites are provided for information only -- they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. © 1997- A.D.A.M., Inc. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.
              adam.com

              A.D.A.M. content is best viewed in IE9 or above, Fire Fox and chrome browser.


              Back  |  Top
              About Us
              Contact Us
              History
              Mission
              Locations & Directions
              Quality Reports
              Annual Reports
              Honors & Awards
              Community Health Needs
              Assessment

              Newsroom
              Services
              Brain & Spine
              Cancer
              Heart
              Maternity
              Orthopedics
              Pulmonary
              Sleep Medicine
              Urgent Care
              Women's Services
              All Services
              Patients & Visitors
              Locations & Directions
              Find a Physician
              Tour St. Luke's
              Patient & Visitor Information
              Contact Us
              Payment Options
              Financial Assistance
              Send a Card
              Mammogram Appointments
              Health Tools
              My Personal Health
              mystlukes
              Spirit of Women
              Health Information & Tools
              Clinical Trials
              Health Risk Assessments
              Employer Programs -
              Passport to Wellness

              Classes & Events
              Classes & Events
              Spirit of Women
              Donate & Volunteer
              Giving Opportunities
              Volunteer
              Physicians & Employees
              For Physicians
              Remote Access
              Medical Residency Information
              Pharmacy Residency Information
              Physician CPOE Training
              Careers
              Careers
              St. Luke's Hospital - 232 South Woods Mill Road - Chesterfield, MO 63017 Main Number: 314-434-1500 Emergency Dept: 314-205-6990 Patient Billing: 888-924-9200
              Copyright © St. Luke's Hospital Website Terms and Conditions  |  Privacy Policy  |  Patient Notice of Privacy Policies PDF Sitemap St. Luke's Mobile