Should You Be Concerned About Hip Pain During Your Pregnancy?

Hip pain is common during pregnancy. The pain is usually the result of changes that occur as your baby grows. Even though the pain might be directly related to your pregnancy, it is important to not ignore it. If you are experiencing hip pain, here is what you need to know.  

What Causes Hip Pain?

There are several pregnancy-related causes that could be causing your hip pain. For instance, the relaxin hormone might be to blame. 

During pregnancy, your body releases the hormone to help relax your muscles and joints for the upcoming labor. 

Unfortunately, the hormone can cause your hip to become more sensitive to trauma, such as falling, which can lead to hip pain. 

Another possible reason is that the extra weight from the pregnancy is placing more pressure on your pelvis. The increased pressure combined with the heightened sensitivity from the relaxin hormone can cause pain. 

As your baby grows, your uterus can begin to press on your nerves. The nerve pain can extend from your hips to your thighs. The condition, known as sciatica, can make it difficult to sleep and cause discomfort throughout your day. 

When Should You Be Concerned?

Although hip pain is common, there is a point at which you need to discuss the issue with your OB/GYN. If you are having trouble with walking or it is extremely painful on one side only, consult with your doctor. It is possible that a more serious condition is causing the pain. Your doctor can refer you to an orthopaedic doctor.  

You should also seek treatment if the pain is radiating across your thighs or if there is soreness in the pelvic area with the hip pain. It could be a sign that you are experiencing preterm labor. Preterm labor could potentially lead to complications for your unborn child, including low birth weight.  

What Can You Do to Relieve the Pain?

There are several measures you can take to alleviate the hip pain. While sleeping, try lying on your back with a pillow between your knees. If you sleep on your side, you can still place the pillow between your knees. The idea is to realign your pelvic bones, which can help ease the pain. 

You can also try stretching. Stretching helps to loosen your muscles and also releases endorphins, which are natural pain fighters. Before stretching, talk to your OB/GYN to determine which stretching techniques are safe for you. If you experience additional pain or other symptoms after stretching, inform your orthopaedic doctor.