Pregnancy is a beautiful and exciting time, but it can also be accompanied by a number of painful and uncomfortable symptoms. One of the most common is sciatica pain, which is experienced by many pregnant women, especially during the first trimester. Sciatica pain can range from mild to severe, and can significantly impact a person’s day-to-day life. While there is no cure for sciatica, there are a number of treatments and strategies available to help pregnant women manage their symptoms. In this blog post, we will explore the causes and symptoms of sciatica pain during pregnancy, common treatments, and tips for managing the pain. By understanding the condition and taking proactive steps, pregnant women can hopefully reduce the severity of their sciatica pain and enjoy a more comfortable pregnancy experience.
Which stretches can immediately relieve sciatica pain?
After receiving treatment for your sciatica, it’s important to move your body regularly to avoid future flare-ups. When you’re standing, sitting, in bed, or even lying on the floor, our team of skilled physical therapists have put together 17 stretches and exercises that are safe for pregnancy and clinically shown to relieve sciatica pain.
Watch the video or follow the instructions below.
Sitting stretches for immediate pain relief at work
Sit on a chair with your feet flat on the ground.
If your right side is affected, put your right ankle on your left knee.
Keeping a straight back, lean forward until you feel a stretch through your buttocks.
Hold for at least 30 seconds.
Sit upright in a chair, with knees hip-width apart, feet flat on the floor and facing forwards.
Extend the right leg, with the foot flexed toward the body.
Extend the neck up and back to look up at the ceiling.
Lower both the neck and leg down gently, so the chin tucks into the chest, and the leg goes slightly back past 90 degrees.
Extend and lower the neck at the same time as extending and lowering the leg.
Switch legs and repeat exercise 10 times for the left leg.
Do 10 repetitions on both legs no more than one set per day.
Sit on the edge of a chair with your feet directly underneath your knees.
Lean forward a little so your nose extends just over your toes and use your legs to push up to a standing position. (Optional: You may use your arms to push off the chair or off of the knees if needed.)
To sit, bend a little at the knees to push hips toward the chair and lower the body to a seated position.
Repeat 10 times.
From a seated position, take a deep breath in and expand your rib cage.
Tighten your core by pulling your rib cage down, as if you are about to be punched in the stomach.
Hold for 10 seconds, then exhale.
Repeat 10 times and perform 2-3 sets per day.
While seated on a sturdy chair, if your right side is affected, slide to the right so that your right leg is relaxed and hanging straight off the edge of the chair.
With your left arm, hold on to the left side of the chair for stability and raise your right arm above your head for a gentle side stretch.
Let gravity relax your right hip.
Hold for 60 seconds and repeat as needed.
Standing tall while holding onto a sturdy object like a chair, raise the straight, affected leg out diagonally until you feel a gentle strain, about 3-4 inches off the floor.
Hold for 3 seconds then return to the starting position.
Repeat 10 times.
Standing by a counter or sturdy chair for support, tighten your core.
Raise the affected leg slightly backward, keeping your knee straight until your foot is about 3 to 4 inches off the floor.
Hold for 3 seconds, then slowly lower.
Repeat 10 times.
Find a surface in your house that is about hip height. Slightly lower or slightly higher is okay, too. A countertop, a tall bed, or the back of a couch works great!
Slowly lift your leg, bend your knee, and rotate your hip so that you can rest the outside of your lower leg fat on the surface.
You should feel a stretch in the back of your hip. Lean forward to feel a deeper stretch.
Hold for 60 seconds, and then switch legs. Repeat as needed.
Standing with your fit hip-width apart, tighten your core.
Bend your knees and slowly lower your hips backward until your hips are level with your knees.
Pause for a moment.
Press into your feet to slowly rise back to standing.
Repeat 10 times.
Find a 2-3 foot stretch of wall without decorations or art.
Take a lacrosse ball, tennis ball, or yoga tune-up ball and place it in the middle of your glute muscles – right in the middle of your buttocks.
Lean into the wall so the ball is pressed into your glute.
From here, move your hips side to side and up and down rolling the ball around your glute. If you want more pressure, lean in harder, if you want less pressure, back off a little. If you find a spot that feels really good, hang out there for 10-20 seconds.
Perform for 60-90 seconds on each side. Repeat as needed.
Standing your armâs-distance away from a wall, gently extend your arm to the side and place one hand onto the wall.
Cross the leg that is close to the wall in front of the other.
Take your other arm and reach up and over toward the wall while gently pushing yourself away from the wall with the other arm stretching out your entire side.
Hold for 30 seconds and then switch sides. Repeat as needed.
Symptoms of Sciatic Nerve Pain
The main symptom is lower back pain that radiates down your legs, as was previously mentioned. Some other symptoms could point to sciatic nerve pain, though:
Poor bladder control
Numbness, tingling, or pins and needles in your legs
Burning sensation in your lower extremities
Pain that worsens with coughing, moving, or sneezing
At your next appointment, you should let your doctor know if you experience any of these symptoms. They will be able to offer you some secure methods of pain relief or some over-the-counter pain medication. In the meantime, try these fantastic stretches at home to reduce pain.
Is sciatic pain normal in first trimester?
Unfortunately, many women suffer from sciatic nerve pain during pregnancy. This is most likely due to an pre-existing lumbo-pelvic problem that is exacerbated by the added physical stress of pregnancy.
What does sciatica feel like in early pregnancy?
Symptoms of sciatic pain during pregnancy
occasional or constant pain in one side of your buttocks or leg. pain along the sciatic nerve path, from the buttocks down the back of your thigh and to the foot. sharp, shooting, or burning pain. numbness, pins and needles, or weakness in the affected leg or foot.
How long does sciatica last in early pregnancy?
About half of people with acute sciatica feel better within 10 days to two weeks, and most (75 per cent) recover within four weeks to 12 weeks . But for some people the symptoms can remain for much longer (Levin et al 2017, NICE 2018a).
Can you get sciatica at 12 weeks pregnant?
Sciatica will most likely occur during the third trimester, when both you and your baby are bulking up. It can develop earlier, but it’s not common.
How to Stop Sciatica when Pregnant. Effective Home Exercises to Stop Sciatic Nerve Pain.