Tips to Relieve Round Ligament Pain During Pregnancy
Round ligament pain is a common discomfort that can begin as early as the first trimester during pregnancy.
The round ligaments run vertically from the top of the uterus to the labia. As your uterus grows and lifts upwards, these ligaments are stretched and can become “tight”. They also must accommodate for the extra load placed on them as your baby grows.
If one or both become tight it can cause a sudden sharp pain in the lower abdomen. This usually occurs with transitional movements like standing up after sitting for a long period of time. You may also feel an “electric shock” feeling in your vagina, also known as “Lightening Crotch”, since these ligaments attach to the labia.
Although it is common, there are things we can do to help alleviate the discomfort, so it doesn’t last your entire pregnancy!
How can we help?
1. Uterine and Round Ligament Assessment
We can assess the mobility of your uterus and the mobility of the round ligaments by gently moving the uterus in different directions to feel for tightness
2. Round Ligament Release
We can treat the round ligaments manually to help improve mobility and decrease the tension placed on them
3. Belly Taping
This can help give your brain and body kinesthetic awareness to help improve alignment and reduce some tension placed on the ligaments
What can you do at home?
1. Baby Hug during transitional movements (sit to stand, rolling in bed, standing up off the floor, etc.)
Take a deep breath in and relax through your belly
Exhale and feel your belly lift up and in as you contract your transverse abdominis
Then stand or roll
2. Practice good postural alignment when standing or walking
Try to maintain your ribcage stacked right over your pelvis to avoid an excessive sway/arch in your low back
3. Hip Flexor Stretching: Half kneeling hip flexor stretch and Standing hip flexor stretch
The hip flexors run vertically across the front of the hip in a similar area as the round ligaments. This stretch can help to stretch through this area and take some tension off of the ligaments.
4. Inversions: Modified Puppy pose
Inversions are any position where the head is lower than the hips. This modified puppy pose is a gentle way to get your hips slightly higher than your head and, with the help of gravity, release the stretch placed on the round ligaments.
Remember, pain is NOT a requirement of pregnancy! If you are experiencing round ligament pain that just isn't going away or any other pregnancy related pain, we're here to help!