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5 Ways to Manage Joint Pain in Pregnancy

You aren’t supposed to hurt in pregnancy. Did you know that? With my daughter I didn’t start hurting until the last few weeks and people would tell me it was normal. With this one I started hurting at 7 weeks… before I even started bloating! I can’t tell you if it was from the relaxin hormone or just normal pregnancy changes affecting my spine, but the sacroiliac pain started right away. Then of course the pubic bone began to override any lower back pain and now that’s all I can think about.

My support system with this pregnancy says it isn’t supposed to hurt though. Granted I may have some underlying spinal issues to take care of after I’ve healed from this pregnancy (I fell off a stage in high school and have had some minor back issues even in my non-pregnant body), but I’ve been loaded up with advice on how to deal with things as I grow bigger. Here are some tips I feel are worth sharing…

  1. Get a belly band and wear it with pride. I put this off for so long because I felt they were “geeky” and slightly unnecessary. Growing babies can be heavy! When the SPD started for me my midwife kept saying “wear a belly band… wear a belly band!” and I finally gave in. It’s seriously a life saver. It may not feel strong, but it’s definitely doing it’s part to lift some of that weight off your back and relieve some pressure on your pelvis. Also, as a bonus, it help to minimize hip bulges. (I’m sure I’m not the only one who deals with that sort of thing… right?)
  2. Buy some CalMag supplements in case sleeping is hard. A big deal for me is switching positions at night. Rolling over from one side to the other can be quite difficult and I’ve woken myself and Hutch up with sudden cries of pain. Calcium lowers blood pressure for mama and helps to prevent per-eclampsia. Magnesium helps to prevent cramping and eases some of the pain associated with overly active pregnancy joints. Magnesium also activate lots of needed enzymes and can lead to increased energy throughout the day. Taking a CalMag supplement can also help in Vitamin D absorbtion, which is mega helpful if your body aches keep you from the lovely sunshine.
  3. Invest in a body pillow. I’m a  hypocrite because I didn’t do this. I have about five weeks to go, give or take, and I’m still using my boyfriend’s leg to keep my knees separated. I can not tell you how many times people encouraged me to get a pregnancy friendly body pillow and I rolled my eyes at the cost. Now that I’m huge and uncomfortable there’s nothing I wish I had more. The only good thing about Hutch working at 4am is being able to steal his pillow for my legs. Save yourself the hassle, get a body pillow!
  4. Load up on spices. I’m not asking you to set your mouth on fire here. Certain foods can help certain ailments, and in the situation of muscle or joint pain your spice cabinet can be a lifesaver. Ginger, on top of its bonus effect of being able to help with morning sickness, has anti-inflammatory properties. Coriander is also anti-inflammatory. Turmeric has a super anti-inflammatory antioxidant as does saffron. And simple black pepper? It increases circulation and may lead to healthier joints.
  5. Hot and cold packs can make a bad day better. When I was seeing a chiropractor for the early pregnancy pain he told me that although warm baths were relaxing and eased muscle soreness, the joint pain required an ice pack. It’s important to know when to use heat and when to use cold. I got some amazing help from Thermal-Aid for this pregnancy and having their hot/cold packs made it easy. I just keep my medium sectional in the freezer all the time and bust that bad boy out when my back starts aching.

    It’s difficult to get to my pubic bone now that my belly is so big, so you can imagine how thankful I am that my Honey bear is the perfect size. (Not to mention adorable hanging out on my crotch… hah!) You can visit Thermal-Aid on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

 

Hopefully I’ve helped to shed some light on what to do about those pesky pregnancy pains. I’m absolutely miserable, I won’t lie. You don’t have to be though and if you learn from my mistakes and stay on top of listening to your body you’re bound to have a  more pleasant experience.

Want a Thermal-Aid hot/cold pack of your own? Thermal-Aid is offering up a giveaway for two lucky readers! One winner will receive a Thermal-Aid bear and the other will receive their very own medium sectional! his giveaway is open to residents of U.S. and Canada and ends on February 19, 2013 at 11:59 pm EST.

Kalsey H. and Dree G. won! Congratulations to both you lovely ladies!

Disclaimer: Thermal-Aid provided me with their product free of charge to review, however all opinions are genuine and my own. I shall not tell lies! Shary Loves You not responsible for sponsors who do not fulfill prize obligations.

 

 

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Comments

  1. Good to know! Thank you!!

  2. I had terrible pelvic pain in the last few weeks of my pregnancy. It would wake me up at night as well. I didn’t know about the CalMag supplements and spices helping!

  3. I had awful back pain when I was pregnant with my daughter. Wish I had known these tips then. LOL

  4. Lots of good tips here, thank you for sharing them. My daughter-in-law is expecting her first, so I’m going to enter and tell her about the product too.

  5. I gained over 60 lbs with each pregnancy and the “belly bands” weren’t in the market. I sure wish I had them then, it would have spared my back some of the stress of the heavy belly! LOL! Thanks for sharing!

  6. I had a lot of back pain during my pregnancy.

  7. I still use a pregnancy body pillow because it’s also great for a bad back. I used the one I got with my son for a good five years, then it fell apart, so I got another one. Great tips!

  8. Pfft, someone needs to tell my OB that pain is not normal. #3 will be here in 11 days and I’m dying! I will have to try some of these tips!

  9. I loved my body pillow when I was pregnant. Sleeping past 36 weeks was so uncomfortable but I refused to sleep in a recliner. That pillow got me through the last 3 weeks.

  10. I just had my baby in January..but I would use a heating pad on my back when I felt achy.

  11. A body pillow was my saving grace when I was pregnant!

  12. My OB said the pain was normal too. Boo. I’m still struggling with it 2mos postpartum

  13. I swim laps, and it gets better for a day or two

  14. Newest follower here! I found your blog thorough the blog hop. It is super cute, I can’t wait to read more! You can find my blog at meandmr.com

    -Melanie @meandmr.com

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