5 Common Pregnancy Discomforts You May Experience

Pregnancy isn’t always comfortable or easy! HARTMANN Direct walk us through common pregnancy discomforts and the suggestions that other mums have of alleviating them.

     I.        Incontinence

Surging hormones in early pregnancy affect the pelvic floor muscle. This is the muscle that is the floor of your abdomen. It runs from the front of your body by the pubic bone to the base of your spine.

A strong pelvic floor muscle means you can control when you urinate and is also the muscle responsible for pleasurable orgasms.

As well as hormones, the growing weight of your baby pressing on your bladder can also contribute to urinary incontinence.

During labour and birth, this muscle is under stress leaving many women post-birth managing incontinence for a short time too.

There are solutions;

  • Pelvic floor exercises keep the muscle strong and toned, perfect for labour and during birth. It is now widely encouraged that women of all ages regularly practice these discreet but effective pelvic floor exercises.
  • Use incontinence products and pads to help you manage any urinary incontinence.

   II.        Lack of sleep

Some women find sleep an issue from the moment of conception and right through pregnancy, whereas other pregnant women only find it an issue in late pregnancy.

Getting a good night’s sleep and plenty of rest is important in pregnancy, but the solutions depend very much on what works for you;

  • Have a bedtime routine in which you can slowly unwind and relax. Try a warm bath and a relaxing book.
  • Some pregnant women find relaxation CDs or even apps help them to relax and enjoy a good night’s sleep.
  • Use plenty of pillows if you are finding it difficult to get comfy in bed. As well as V-shaped pillows and pregnancy pillows, use ordinary ones to support your back and keep you on your side.

III.        Heartburn

Hormones and the growing baby lead to every organ being squashed and under pressure with some pregnant women suffering from heartburn.

Again, you may find this more of a problem in late pregnancy when the stomach is under pressure. Changing your eating habits can help;

  • Spicy foods and pregnancy don’t always mix so it may be that you have to change your diet during pregnancy to give your digestive a hand in keeping heartburn at bay.
  • Rather than eating three meals a day, graze instead. This is where you eat smaller portions but more often.
  • If heartburn is a problem at night, try not to eat within two hours of getting into If it persists, try sleeping slightly elevated to keep the acid reflux at bay.
  • A heartburn or indigestion remedy may be useful but always check that is OK with your midwife who may have more suggestion about keeping heartburn at bay.

IV.        Swollen ankles, fingers and hands

During pregnancy, we retain more fluid and that can lead to swollen ankles, feet and hands. You may find that as you go through the day, your hands and feet swell more.

It isn’t always a sign that there is something wrong, but f you ankles start to swell quickly and are painful or you feel unwell, call your midwife or see your doctor.

However, swollen ankles and hands may mean a few changes;

  • Avoid standing for long periods and when you can sit, elevate your feet. Rotate your feet at the ankle and gently flex your feet as you do so.
  • Sleeping on your life side is also known to help swollen hands and feet.
  • Your midwife may suggest you wear compression stocking, perfect for ‘pushing’ the fluid back up into the body cavity.
  • Stay active and physically every day as this too helps with water retention.
  • Wear loose clothing and wear shoes that are supportive of your feet but not restrictive.

  V.        Constipation

Again, not a problem that is inevitable or one that every pregnant woman suffers from but being constipated in pregnancy is not uncommon.

It happens for all kinds of reasons. Sometimes, morning sickness leads to a poor diet, especially if you have a loss of appetite too.

Or it may be that you are dehydrated and this prevents the stools from passing easily through the gut.

  • Make sure you eat a varied diet, including fruit and vegetables, as well as whole grains and pulses.
  • Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day but limiting your intake of caffeine and sugary drinks.
  • Exercise also helps a sluggish bowel.



HARTMANN Direct is an online retailer of high-quality incontinence products, perfect for use during and after pregnancy.

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