Is It Normal To Have Cramps While Pregnant

How To Treat Stomach Cramps During The First Trimester

Pain and Cramping During Pregnancy: When to Worry | Parents

Needless to say, painful cramps during early pregnancy can be inconvenient and uncomfortable. You might be experiencing physical and emotional changes, and adding cramps to your discomfort might feel overwhelming. Treating pregnancy cramps can help you feel more comfortable and as stress free as possible.

If youre experiencing cramps, here are a few tips for alleviating them quickly:

  • Drink water. You are more likely to experience cramps if you are dehydrated. Make sure that you drink at least eight cups of water each day.
  • Change positions. When you experience cramps, try shifting positions while lying or sitting down. Dont put pressure on the source of the pain.
  • Stretch and exercise. Try doing mild pregnancy exercises or stretch your body to soothe cramped muscles. In addition to relieving active cramps, this can also help prevent future ones.
  • Gentle massage. A massage can stimulate blood circulation in your muscles, relieving uncomfortable cramps. Getting a gentle lower back massage might help relieve aches.
  • Sleep. Try to get a good nights sleep during early pregnancy as this makes you feel rested. Try to get enough sleep every night.

Are Cramps In Pregnancy Normal

Its completely understandable to worry about stomach pain in pregnancy and be anxious about this being a sign of miscarriage. But stomach pains or cramps are common in pregnancy and usually nothing to worry about.

Mild stomach pain in early pregnancy is usually caused by your womb expanding, the ligaments stretching as your bump grows, hormones constipation or trapped wind. It may sometimes feel like a stitch or mild period pain. Its is probably nothing to worry about if the pain is mild and goes away when you change position, have a rest, do a poo or pass wind.

You may also feel light period-like discomfort or cramps at the end of your pregnancy. This is nothing to worry about, but call your midwife if you have any concerns.

Cramping In The Second Trimester

Again, constipation is a possible cause of discomfort and cramping during any trimester. Outside of that, you may be experiencing something called round ligament pain.

“Round ligament pain can be confused with cramping and that is most likely to happen in the second trimester,” says Abdelhak.

The round ligaments run along both sides of the pelvis and help support your uterus. As your pregnancy progresses the ligaments stretch, causing pain when they tighten or spasm.

Round ligament pain:

  • Can occur on either or both sides of the abdomen or pelvis, but is typically felt on the right.
  • Often happens during sudden movements, like when rolling over in bed, standing up quickly, or coughing.
  • Is temporary and nothing to worry about.

A less likely, but still possible cause of second trimester abdominal pain is preeclampsia. This serious hypertensive disorder usually develops after 20 weeks of pregnancy.

Symptoms of preeclampsia include:

  • Swelling of the hands and feet
  • Nausea and vomiting

It’s best to connect with your care team right away if you experience any of these signs.

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Serious Causes Of Cramps In Early Pregnancy

In certain cases of sharp cramps, early pregnancy complications may be the culprits.

1. Ectopic Pregnancy

An ectopic pregnancy is a pregnancy where the embryo gets implanted outside of the uterus, usually in the fallopian tubes. However, the embryo can get implanted elsewhere too. When not diagnosed on time and when left untreated, an ectopic pregnancy is a life-threatening situation. Signs and symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy include:

  • Sharp abdominal pain which is usually located on one side and tends to come and go as well
  • Abdominal pain tending to get worse, during physical activity, while having a bowel movement or even coughing
  • Pain in the shoulder due to a buildup of blood under the diaphragm when the fallopian tube ruptures
  • Vaginal spotting
  • Vaginal bleeding, etc.

2. Miscarriage

Miscarriage is another cause of sharp cramps in early pregnancy. A miscarriage is a loss of pregnancy within the first 20 weeks of pregnancy, usually characterized by a vaginal spotting or bleeding which can be heavy or light, abdominal cramping which can be mild or sharp, or pelvic pressure. Call your healthcare provider if you are experiencing the symptoms of a miscarriage.

3. Urinary Tract Infections

Pregnant women are more likely to get urinary infections. Any bladder infection during pregnancy should be taken seriously as it can lead to a kidney infection which can become a life-threatening condition. Signs and symptoms of a bladder infection include:

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Are you getting cravings? Some women do, some dont. Pregnancy cravings are caused by hormonal changes affecting your senses of taste and smell. Some mums go off coffee and curries. Others crave cake or fruit. Try eating a balanced healthy diet. If you get any weird pregnancy cravings, like wanting to eat dirt, talk to your midwife or doctor, as you may have a dangerous condition called pica caused by a lack of iron.

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Recommendations In The Presence Of Hand Cramps During Pregnancy

So it is important to know that hand cramps during pregnancy will improve just after delivery , however when this does not happen and the symptoms remain over time, it is important to visit the orthopedic surgeon who will do the physical examination and the precise diagnosis. in this way perform the appropriate therapy for the patient. Similarly, you can use these tips to relieve hand cramps during pregnancy.

This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.

If you want to read more articles similar to Is it normal to have hand cramps during pregnancy? , we recommend that you enter our Pregnancy and baby health category .

Is It Normal To Have Shortness Of Breath In Pregnancy

Breathlessness is a common problem in pregnancy that may start in the first or second trimester. You are more likely to feel breathless if you have gained a lot of weight or are expecting more than one baby. Breathlessness can last until you are nearly ready to give birth. It wont harm your baby but can be annoying for you. Try these tips to help ease your breathlessness:

  • Keep in an upright position.
  • Do light exercise such as walking or swimming.

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Are Leg Cramps Bad During Pregnancy

Very occasionally, leg cramps can be a sign of something more sinister. In one or two in 1,000 pregnancies, a blood clot can develop and lodge in the leg vein and that will need treatment straight away.

If you are getting cramps very regularly or can see some swelling or tenderness in your leg, contact your GP.

You should ask for an urgent appointment if leg cramps last for longer than 10 minutes. Its also urgent if there’s a chance you might have got a tetanus infection from a recent injury.

This page was last reviewed in February 2018.

My Stomach Feels Weirddoes Your Stomach Hurt In Early Pregnancy

Normal Cramping vs. Abnormal Cramping During Pregnancy with Midwife Richelle Jolley

It depends on what you mean by hurt.

In general, the kinds of pain youll experience in your belly or lower abdomen in early pregnancy are related to:

  • Nausea usually happens between two and eight weeks after conception2
  • Cramping these can feel similar to pre-menstrual cramps and can be a sign of implantation2
  • Bloating and abdominal discomfort similar to PMS symptoms

Below I talk a little more about nausea, which is common in early pregnancy .

So in the sense of feeling nauseous, yes, your stomach can hurt. Some women also feel some light cramping at the very beginning of their pregnancy, which may or may not be accompanied by spotting . This usually occurs around the predicted time of the period or a couple of days before.

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Your Cramping Comes With Dizziness Lightheadedness Or Bleeding

It’s especially important to call your doctor or midwife if you experience cramping and other symptoms like dizziness, lightheadedness, or vaginal bleeding if you haven’t yet confirmed your pregnancy with an ultrasound as it could be a sign of an ectopic pregnancy. Bleeding can also be a symptom of miscarriage or placenta previa, a condition in which the placenta covers the cervix.

What Stomach Pain And Cramps Should I Look Out For In Pregnancy

Most stomach pain and cramps in pregnancy are nothing to worry about. But there are some symptoms you should know about as they could be a sign of something more serious.

If you feel any of the following pains, even if you’re not experiencing any of the other symptoms listed, call your midwife, doctor or hospital immediately.

Severe pain on one side of the lower stomach in early pregnancyThis pain could be a sign of an ectopic pregnancy. Other symptoms may include:

  • pain in the tip of your shoulder
  • brown discharge

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Serious Causes Of Abdominal Pain In Pregnancy

Most causes of abdominal pain during pregnancy are nothing to worry about, but some causes of abdominal pain need medical care right away. If you suspect you may be facing one of the following problems, get medical assistance immediately.

Appendicitis. Appendicitis is an infection of your appendix, which can happen even during pregnancy and needs immediate treatment. Appendicitis causes:

  • Pain on your right side
  • Stomach pain near your belly button
  • Dont Let Cramps and Back Pain Ruin Your Pregnancy Experience
  • Its not unusual to feel a little uneasy about cramping and lower back pain in early pregnancy. Thankfully, however, these troublesome symptoms are usually nothing to worry about.

    According to the American Pregnancy Association, 50-70% of women experience low back pain in pregnancy that poses no risk to the pregnancy. And that doesnt mean that 30-50% of low back pain cases do indicate troubleplenty of women experience no pain at all!

    Before you start to panic about the things you feel, its good to consider whether your cramping and back pain stems from one of these common causes:

    Cramps In The Hands Due To Fluid Retention

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    The physiological changes during pregnancy are innumerable and in most cases depend mainly on the gestational age, that is, the moment of the pregnancy in which you are. Swelling in the extremities is one of the most noticeable manifestations during pregnancy, in fact, it occurs in approximately 80% of pregnant women. This is due to fluid retention and is the main cause of hand cramps .

    For its part, fluid retention is associated with these factors:

    • The first of these are the hormonal changes that are presented as gestational age advances and that in fact prepare the body for the birth of the baby.
    • As a second, the fetus that as it grows is capable of generating pressure in the pelvis, preventing blood from circulating normally.

    This can manifest with:

    • Edema in lower limbs

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    Cramps During The Second Trimester

    Pregnant people are less likely to experience cramping or other uncomfortable pregnancy symptoms during the second trimester. One exception is anyone pregnant with multiples since the uterus grows more rapidly and will reach third-trimester proportions in the second trimester. Here are some other causes of second-trimester pregnancy cramping.

    Bleeding And Cramping During Early Pregnancy: What To Track

    If you need to call your provider about bleeding, cramping, or spotting, write down as much information as possible about your symptoms.

    • Bleeding or spotting As we discussed above, theres a difference between the two. Is your bleeding heavier or lighter than a period?
    • Color Is the discharge youre seeing bright red, brown, pink, clear or white with a tinge of color? Brown discharge is old blood, not fresh. And pink means theres very little blood.
    • Texture Are you passing blood with clots?
    • Duration How long have you been experiencing the symptoms? Hours? Days? Has it been a solid flow or intermittent spotting?
    • Intensity Are your cramps mild or severe? Do they feel like menstrual cramps or is it a different type of discomfort?

    Remember, bleeding and cramping is common in early pregnancy. Most often, the symptoms are temporary and youll go on to have a healthy pregnancy and baby. When youre concerned, reach out to your doctor or midwife. The more information you can give your provider, the better able he or she will be to decide the appropriate next steps.

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  • Simkin, P. . Pregnancy, Childbirth and the Newborn, 4th edition. Meadowbrook Press
  • Glade, B.C., Schuler, J. . Your Pregnancy Week by Week, 7th edition. First Da Capo Press
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    / When Should I Be Worried About Cramping In Early Pregnancy

    ‘If a woman is experiencing severe or continual pain during early pregnancy, or heavy bleeding, she should contact a healthcare professional for advice or call 999 in an emergency situation,’ says Dr Beckett. ‘While the majority of cramping and light bleeding during early pregnancy is not a cause for concern, it could indicate the onset of miscarriage or an ectopic pregnancy.’

    Can Exercises Help Ease Leg Cramps

    What should I do if I’m cramping during early pregnancy?

    Regular, gentle exercises could mean cramps crop up less often and can help ease symptoms when they happen too. Heres how to do them:

    • Bend and stretch the foot vigorously up and down 30 times.
    • Rotate the foot eight times one way and eight times the other way and repeat with other foot.
    • Pull the toes hard up towards the ankle or rub the muscle hard.
    • Try doing these exercises three times a day.

    When you do get a cramp, stretch and massage the muscle straight away .

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    Implantation Bleeding Or Period

    If you havent yet gotten a positive pregnancy test and are trying to conceive, you may be watching like a hawk for any sign of your period starting. Implantation bleeding, when present, usually happens shortly before a womans menstrual period is expected. This can make it difficult to determine whether bleeding is a sign that youre pregnant or confirmation that youre not.

    Implantation bleeding is usually very light, lasting no more than 48 hours. In fact, its often just a few hours, or even a single spot or streak of discharge. Unless you have very light or atypical periods, implantation bleeding should be significantly lighter than a menstrual period. There may be no way to know for sure in the first day or so, if your period usually starts off light. But within a day or two, you should have a pretty clear answer.

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    Common Causes Of Abdominal Pain During Pregnancy

    Some abdominal aches and pains during pregnancy are quite common and generally pose no threat to you and your baby.

    • Round Ligament Pain: This can be characterized by a sharp stabbing pain when you change positions, or it can also be an achy, dull, lingering pain. Round ligament pain is caused by the two large ligaments that run from your uterus to your groin. As the uterus grows, these ligaments are stretched and create discomfort. This pain is generally reported in the second trimester, and considered to be harmless. Read the full Round Ligament Pain article.
    • Gas and Constipation: Gas during pregnancy is caused by increased levels of progesterone. As more of this hormone is released, your gastrointestinal tract slows down, which makes food travel more slowly. Drinking plenty of water, eating fiber-rich foods, exercising, and using stool softeners are excellent ways to combat excessive gas and constipation. Learn more about Constipation during Pregnancy.
    • Common Discomforts: In addition to those listed above, there are several other common abdominal discomforts that can be experienced during pregnancy and are generally non-threatening. Your growing uterus, stomach viruses, kidney stones, fibroids, and food sensitivities are all valid forms of harmless abdominal pain.

    How To Manage Uterus Pain In Early Pregnancy

    Rib Pain During Pregnancy

    Treatment for uterine pains depends on your symptoms. Mild uterine pain that goes away after a few minutes or hours is likely nothing to worry about.

    You can treat mild uterine discomfort at home by taking a warm shower or bath, resting, and drinking plenty of water and other fluids. Tell your doctor about your symptoms, as they may recommend another form of treatment thats safe for your pregnancy.

    Sharp, stabbing, or chronic pain along with symptoms like bleeding, shortness of breath, or fever or chills likely requires emergency medical care.

    Let medical staff know youre pregnant and report any symptoms such as dizziness, nausea, or faintness right away. The medical staff will assess your symptoms and may perform an ultrasound.

    Seek help if youre experiencing sharp or chronic uterine pain along with other symptoms like:

    • vaginal bleeding

    If the pain goes away on its own, it likely isnt a reason for concern, but you should still let your doctor know.

    You should also let your doctor know about any mild uterine pain during pregnancy. They can decide if you need to be seen right away or if you can wait until your next scheduled prenatal appointment.

    Also, tell your doctor if youre experiencing uterine pain along with spotting or bleeding. These may be symptoms of a miscarriage. Your doctor can assess your symptoms and determine next steps.

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