Healthy Pregnancy

Dealing with pregnancy back aches

Why back aches?

Though common, back aches are not an inevitable part of pregnancy. Several factors work together to cause back aches.

As the baby grows, the mother’s center of gravity changes. Some women respond to the changing center of gravity by pulling the shoulders back, which puts pressure on the lower back. Wearing shoes with a heel will further exaggerate this arching, causing worse back aches.

The ligaments that hold the uterus in place are attached to the back. As the uterus grows, this added weight pulling on the back may cause back aches.

When your baby begins to descend into the pelvis, the head can cause pressure on the pelvis which may be felt as a backache or pain in the hips.

Some Women Have Tried…

  • Try pelvic rocking, it stretches the muscles of the back and re-aligns the uterus.
  • Dance. Hip movements such as those seen in belly dancing, hula or latin dances can encourage your baby to change positions. This may help reduce some of the pressure on your back.
  • Have someone massage, or just put pressure on your lower back.
  • Make a massage oil by adding 2 drops of black pepper oil and 2 drops of peppermint oil to a base oil. Use this oil to massage your back.
  • Add basil and marjoram essential oils to a warm bath.
  • Make an herbal compress by wetting a cloth in a bowl of hot water to which four to six drops of lavender, camomile or peppermint oil has been added. Wring out the cloth and apply to the lower back.
  • Take an Epsom salt bath. Add 8 oz of Epsom salts to a hot bath and soak for about 20 minutes. Drink plenty of water as this treatment can increase perspiration for several hours.
  • A cup of cider or wine vinegar added to bath water can help sooth sore muscles.
  • Pregnancy yoga can help relieve sore muscles.
  • Check your posture to be sure your back is not arched.
  • Exercises to strengthen your core can help prevent back aches.
  • Avoid shoes with heels. They change your and cause you to over-arch your back to maintain balance.
  • Be sure to rest when you have been on your feet for an extended period of time.
    When you must stand for a prolonged amount of time, put one foot on a low stool to help maintain the proper curve in your back.
  • Sit in chairs that allow your knees to be higher than your hips. In the car, bring the seat forward so your knees are bent. Use a small pillow to help support your lower back.
Jennifer (Author)