Along with pregnancy comes many strange symptoms, such as braxton hicks contractions, sore feet, heartburn, and an itchy stomach. One unpleasant symptom that many women experience during pregnancy is vaginal pain. While vaginal pain during pregnancy is extremely common, there are some things you should know about what's normal and what isn't. In this article, I'll go over everything you need to know about vaginal pain during pregnancy, as well as tips for finding relief from the pain. Let's get started.
What Causes Vaginal Pain During Pregnancy?
One question that you may have is this: What causes vaginal pain during pregnancy? Although it can sometimes be difficult to understand why pregnant women deal with vaginal pain during pregnancy, there are a few reasons for this painful experience.
The main reason for vaginal pain during pregnancy is that as your baby grows and becomes heavier, it puts increasing pressure on the muscles in your pelvic floor. These muscles offer support to the uterus, small intestine, bladder, and rectum. The farther along you get in your pregnancy, your baby continues to put pressure against your organs, hips, and pelvis. As a result, you may feel vaginal pain.
Another cause for all that pelvic pressure in the later months of pregnancy is the hormone relaxin. Relaxin helps loosen your ligaments to help prepare your body for childbirth. Unfortunately, it can also affect your pelvic joints, causing pain. Many women experience pain near their pubic bone and the sensation of shaky legs during the last trimester.
What's the Cause For Vaginal Pain During Early Pregnancy?
It is common for women to experience vaginal pain during their first and second trimester. Because the baby is still too small to put pressure on your muscles, there are other reasons for vaginal pain during early pregnancy. A cramping sensation in the early weeks of pregnancy may be due to your expanding uterus. Watch for signs of vaginal bleeding if you’re feeling cramp-like pains. Call your doctor if you start spotting or bleeding. You should also call your doctor if you notice cramping. Cramping is a common symptom for a miscarriage.
Constipation can also cause feelings of pressure. Constipation during pregnancy is normal and is often caused by an increase in the hormone progesterone, which relaxes smooth muscles throughout the body, including the digestive tract. If you are experiencing constipation during pregnancy, be sure to drink plenty of water and eat lots of fiber. This can help prevent vaginal pain during pregnancy.
When Will Vaginal Pain During Pregnancy Go Away?
Each woman's pregnancy is different, so there is no guarantee of when the vaginal pain will go away. It may go away within a few days, or you may experience it throughout your pregnancy. If you begin experiencing vaginal pain during your last trimester, there is a good chance the pain won't go away until after delivery. Once your baby drops, you may feel even more pain since your baby will move further into the pelvic region in preparation for delivery.
Once you give birth, don't expect the pain to go away quickly. If you have a vaginal birth, you will still experience vaginal pain. Not only can delivering a baby cause you to be sore, but you may also experience a tear. A tear after a vaginal delivery will require stitches. If you have a C-section done, you shouldn't expect the recovery to be any easier. Many women experience vaginal pain several weeks after having a C-section done. If the pain continues longer than you think it should, you should talk with your doctor.
Tips For Finding Relief From Vaginal Pain During Pregnancy
So, what can be done once you start experiencing vaginal pain during pregnancy? Thankfully, there are many tips for finding relief from vaginal pain during pregnancy. Below is a list of the best ways to get rid of vaginal pain during pregnancy.
There are many wonderful yoga poses that can help strengthen your pelvic muscles. When you strengthen these muscles, you may not experience as much pain. Kegel pelvic floor exercises are recommended to do during pregnancy, especially if you are experiencing vaginal pain. Kegel exercises can be done in two different ways. You can either hold the pelvic floor muscles or quickly contract them. For the slow Kegels, contract the pelvic floor muscle and hold for 10 seconds. Then relax and repeat ten times. For fast Kegels, quickly contract and relax your pelvic floor muscle 50 times. Relax for 5 seconds and repeat up to 4 times. If you are looking for other yoga poses that are great to do during pregnancy, check out our article here.
As much as you may like to sit on the couch and satisfy your food cravings, staying active is necessary if you want to overcome your vaginal pain during pregnancy. Even low-intensity exercises such as walking can help strengthen the muscles and promote good posture. As a result, you shouldn't experience as much vaginal pain during pregnancy.
Remember to drink plenty of water, especially after exercising or being out in hot weather. Staying hydrated will help prevent constipation, which in turn will prevent vaginal pain during pregnancy.
Take A Warm Bath Or Shower
Taking a warm bath or shower may help relieve your vaginal pain. Remember that the water should not be hot, as hot water can be dangerous during pregnancy. This is especially important during the first trimester, as hot baths can cause a miscarriage.
Get A Prenatal Massage
A prenatal massage can also be helpful for relieving pelvic pain and pressure. When having a prenatal massage done, make sure you lie on your side. The left side is recommended. You shouldn't lie on your stomach, as this is uncomfortable and unsafe. You should also not lie on your back. Have your prenatal massage be done by a licensed therapist who specializes in treating pregnant women.
Wear A Pregnancy Belt
A pregnancy belt is designed to help lift your baby bump, which will help reduce the amount of pressure on your pelvic muscles. Pregnancy belts will also help reduce back pain, which is another unpleasant symptom during pregnancy. Check out our article here on the top ten best pregnancy belts.
Sit As Much As Possible
When you aren't working out, you should try to sit as much as possible. Standing can cause increased pain in the pelvic muscles, as well as make your posture poor. When you must stand, be sure you have good posture. Even though you may be tempted to lean back or forward, you should always stand straight. This will help prevent back and pelvic pain. Once again, a pregnancy belt may be helpful for correcting your posture when you aren't sitting down.
When Should I See A Doctor?
Usually, vaginal pain during pregnancy is just an uncomfortable symptom that will go away in time. However, it is also best to discuss with your doctor what you are experiencing. Your doctor will be able to identify if anything else is causing your vaginal pain during pregnancy. For example, an infection can form from vaginal pressure. An infection can be very dangerous, as it can spread throughout the body and harm the baby, as well as put you at risk of having premature labor.
In addition to having an infection, very weak pelvic muscles can lead to POP. This painful condition can cause incontinence, pain during sex, and changes in the appearance of the genitals. Another complication that can arise due to vaginal pressure is that the hormone relaxin may increase the risk of muscle injuries. Muscle injuries can make birth be more difficult and can cause you to have more vaginal pain.
So, when should you see a doctor? During pregnancy, you will be getting checkups done frequently. The next time you visit with your doctor or midwife, be sure to discuss your vaginal pain with him or her. Your doctor will be able to tell you if anything else is causing your vaginal pain, as well as have some recommendations and treatments for you.
Other Reasons To Call Your Doctor:
Besides having vaginal pain during pregnancy, you should call your doctor immediately if you experience a severe headache, dizziness, sudden swelling in your hands or feet, a fever, chills, or vaginal bleeding. Also, you should call your doctor if you are experiencing sharp vaginal pain. While a constant pressure on your vaginal area is normal, sharp pain is not. Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these symptoms.
Vaginal pain during pregnancy is very common. Many women experience it as soon as their first trimester, while others don't have it until their third trimester or right before labor. The reason for vaginal pain during pregnancy is that as your baby grows, he or she puts pressure on your pelvic muscles. Keep in mind that sharp pain or vaginal pain associated with other symptoms could mean something else is causing your vaginal pain during pregnancy. Be sure to discuss any pain you have with your doctor. I hope this article has been helpful for you. Hopefully, your vaginal pain during pregnancy will go away soon so that you can enjoy the time you have of being pregnant.
Related Article: 10 Tips For A Smooth Vaginal Birth Recovery