Common pregnancy pains and what causes them

Learn all about the most common pregnancy-related aches and pains.

Himanshu Sharma
PregnancyWritten by: Himanshu SharmaPublished at: Aug 10, 2015
Common pregnancy pains and what causes them

A lot of worrying comes with pregnancy; it brings about a variety of aches and pains for a woman. Especially those who are experiencing their first pregnancy, the slightest twinge of pain in any part of your body seems like a major concern. During pregnancy, slight to moderate pains, new sensations or aches come and go.

Learn about some of the most common pregnancy-related aches and pains.

Pregnancy pains

Abdominal pain

Abdominal pain is one of the most common pregnancy complaints. A mild abdominal pain may be harmless, but a severe or persistent abdominal pain should never be ignored. Abdominal pain or cramping along with spotting, bleeding, fever, chills, vaginal discharge, faintness, discomfort while urinating, or nausea and vomiting should be checked with a medical practitioner.

Ectopic pregnancy, miscarriage, preterm labour, vaginal spotting or bleeding, placental abruption, preeclampsia, urinary tract infections, stomach virus, food poisoning, appendicitis, kidney stones, hepatitis, gallbladder disease, pancreatitis, fibroids and bowel obstruction are the reasons behind abdominal pain.

Pelvic pain

Pregnancy causes misalignment or stiffness of your pelvic joints, either at the back or front of your pelvis. This is a result of stretching ligaments, hormonal changes and shift in organs to make room for growing uterus. Ovarian cysts, round ligament pain, pressure from your baby's weight, Braxton Hicks contractions, relaxed pelvic joints, constipation, urinary tract infection (UTI) are the reasons behind pelvic pain during pregnancy.

Stabbing chest pain

Stabbing chest pain is often reported by women who are expecting a baby. It is important to get acquainted with the risks for chest pain and what a stabbing sensation in your chest may indicate as it could be alarming. The pain in the chest during pregnancy is attributed to the onset of heartburn. A change in muscle function is another reason for stabbing chest pain and the pain further spread to the back, shoulders and abdomen. To alleviate chest pain, pregnant women can use a heat pad/ice pad to the chest area (whichever relieves pain).

Pregnancy pains

Round ligament pain

As your belly starts to grow is round, you will start to experience ligament pain. These pains are felt primarily in the lower abdomen and in your sides. The muscles have to work hard to make space for growing foetus with every pregnancy thereafter because your first baby stretched things out.

Leg cramps

Leg cramps and muscle spasms are common pregnancy complications. These occur as a result of dehydration and lack of potassium in diet.


All of the aforementioned pregnancy pains are just par for the course. However, if you feel severe or persistent pain at any point of time, you should see a medical professional immediately to rule out a problem.

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