When you’re pregnant, you get to know your body in a way unlike any other. This happens as you experience a plethora of new sensations including some that are not all that pleasant. For instance: you may begin to feel soreness, stiffness, or even downright pain in your elbows, fingers, knees, hips, and other joints. Joint pain during pregnancy is actually fairly common among women. This is especially true for women experiencing first-time pregnancies. This stiffness and pain can make it difficult for a woman to get around comfortably in her day-to-day life.
Pregnancy Weight Gain and Joint Pain
You may think it’s your body simply reacting to weight gain and you are partially right. If this is your first time being pregnant, the extra pounds your baby adds can cause soreness especially in the knees and heels. But while weight gain may be a contributor to your pregnancy joint pain, it may not be the only reason for joint pain.
Hip & Pelvic Joint Pain During Pregnancy
When you are pregnant your body begins to release additional pregnancy-specific hormones. These hormones soften your hip and pelvic joints in order to prepare your body for delivery. These hormones also soften the ligaments in these areas, which makes it easier for them to overstretch which causes pain in the hips, groin, pubis, inner thighs, and lower back. This pain typically comes on around the second trimester. By the third trimester, the weight of the baby puts more of the pressure on the joints in the legs (see above).
Other Kinds of Expected Joint Pain During Pregnancy
- Sacroiliac joint pain occurs in your lower back, around the spinal area. This pain limits movement and can affect ligaments and muscles in the back.
- Pregnant women often develop carpal tunnel syndrome that causes joint pain in the fingers, hands, and lower forearm. The woman’s grip is weakened and the compression of nerves in the hand may cause tingling sensations.
- Fluid collection in or around joints can cause joint pain during pregnancy.
Minor joint pain during pregnancy is normal and can be expected. However, if you are unable to walk, move, or stand for normal periods of time, you may be experiencing something more serious. If you are experiencing joint pain during pregnancy, or any other severe pain, contact your doctor.
If you or someone you know is pregnant and experiencing joint pain, contact Dr. Stacie Grossfeld at Orthopaedic Specialists in Louisville, KY. Dr. Grossfeld has over 15 years of medical experience and can help treat and relieve joint pain due to the changes your body goes through when pregnant. Contact the office today at 502-212-2663 to discuss your pain and schedule an appointment.