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Pain in Legs During Pregnancy – Causes and Remedies

Pregnancy is well known for the discomfort and pain it causes the mother right from the beginning with some women suffering morning sickness. Then sometime in the second half, pain in the legs during pregnancy starts. The pain can be felt during the day, but is mostly common in the nights as one settles down to sleep. It gives many a mother sleepless nights as their sleep is continually interrupted by the pain, if they manage to get some in the first place.

It is something that affects most women and yet what actually causes pain in legs during pregnancy is uncertain, with various parties offering various suggestions. The views maybe deviating but they still offer some sort of peek into what is causing this much distress to almost all pregnant mothers and the best way to deal with it. Here are some of the views:

  • With the obvious increase in body mass, the weight to be supported by the legs increases and so does the pressure on them. This causes the leg muscles to become overused and when you finally give them some rest in the night, the pain begins almost as soon as you lay down.
  • It is suggested that when the uterus expands during pregnancy, it presses down on blood vessels and nerves running to and from the legs. This causes limited blood supply plus puts pressure on the nerves and so causes the legs to start hurting in protest.
  • As the mother is now feeding for two, the baby is taking majority of the nutrients and barely leaving any for the mother. This results into a deficiency in magnesium, calcium and potassium which in turn cause leg pain. It has also been put forward that too much phosphorus during pregnancy is likely to cause some leg pain. However, this is a scanty theory as there seems to be no direct link of the nutrients to pregnancy and studies to support it a few.
  • There has also been some talk of lack of salt in the body causing leg pains in pregnant mothers.
    Now knowing what maybe causing your leg pains while pregnant, you might want to try and do something about it in an effort to help reduce the pain. Here are some tips.
  • Stretching and exercising is known to offer some help. This is however to be done under the advisement of a doctor, as for some women, exercise may be too risky for the baby and themselves. If it is not walking in the morning, and some leg stretching before bed are a good way to get the pressure off your legs.
  • Eat a balanced diet and drink plenty of fluids. It is best to stay well hydrated at all times. You may not want to eat, but remember that you are now feeding two entities and you will need all your strength if you are to successfully carry the baby to full term and proceed to deliver a healthy baby.
  • Warm baths just before bed to help relax the muscles are a good way to help counter the pain. Also, your partner can give you a massage of the feet and legs just before bed to help get the legs relaxed and reduce the pain.
  • Avoid standing or sitting while your legs are crossed. When seated, try and keep rotating your ankles and wriggling your toes to keep the blood circulating. This relieves the pressure on the legs and allows blood flow and so reduces the chances of pain.

It is important for every intending mother to know that pain in legs during pregnancy is all but normal and majority of pregnant mothers go through it at some stage in their pregnancy. However, sharp stinging pains that make it impossible for you to do anything else should be checked out by a midwife and appropriate measures taken.

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