Rib pain happens when intercoastal muscles located within rib tightens and get inflamed, causing forced expiration similar to as it occurs during laboured exercise or sneezing. Women with wider hips and recommended sidelying sleeping during pregnancy are more prone to rib pain during pregnancy. This leads to muscle tightening causing irritation within rib joints and associated muscles and ligaments, impacting mobility of ribcage. In third trimester, almost all of the pregnant women will experience rib pain, caused from uterus pressure over the abdomen that squeezes the rib and punch or kicking from the growing baby. Rib pain may range from mild to severe pain, with tender ribs on the right portion (depends on baby’s position), just beneath the breasts. The pain will subside when baby droops down into the pelvic cavity, getting ready for the birth. The rib pain appears most, while leaning forward and sitting down.
Dealing With Rib Pain During Pregnancy
Keep Yourself Comfortable
Women can keep themselves comfortable by wearing lose fitted clothes and bras that suits them the most. Also, use cushions while lying down, to overcome undue pressure over the ribs. Try sitting straight, while supporting the back and never bend to pick up things, but instead sit down slowly, over the knees. Avoid long sitting hours and take a break in-between and have short walks.
Make Use of Cold packs or Heat Packs
Provide relaxation to the body by using hot packs over the painful rib cage area. But, make sure it is bearable and avoid direct contact with skin. Use it by wrapping in soft cloth. Some women, feel better with use of cold packs, but again avoid putting it directly over the skin. Alternatively, one can have a relaxing hot shower bath in the morning and at the end of the day.
Exercise For Temporary Relief
Stand in front of a wall, with a distance of 40cms from the wall and cross both arms. Then lean the crossed arms on the wall, slowly sliding the arms upwards, raising them above the head and stretching up as far as possible and comfortable. This aids in lifting the rib cage and diaphragm off the uterus and offers a big temporary relief from rib pain. It is more relaxing to those, who have severe pain due to breech baby’s head that is wedged under the ribcage. Swimming is also a good exercise option as it stretches you out and supports the body, providing relief from rib pain. Women can consult chiropractor, osteopath or acupuncturist to help you get relief from rib pain. They will analyze all possible factors leading to rib pain and help to ease the pain, which may be arising due to other pregnancy problems too.
Beware From Using Anti Inflammatory Drugs During Pregnancy
For unbearable pain, don’t opt for any medicines, especially anti-inflammatory drugs. If really feel the need for medicines, consult the doctor, who may suggest panadeine, but still, avoid them as far as possible as it can increase constipation troubles, already faced by women, during pregnancy. Just remember, something beautiful and life changing parcel is coming your way and as it is said, something special and precious can only be attained with some amount of pain, making even the pain looks worthwhile. Rib pain is going to end soon, as the baby goes down in crowning position. Bundle of joy is all set to arrive safely in this world and rib pain is one of the signals for it.