Rib pains in pregnancy, causes and remedies

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Marie-Ange Demory
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Rib pains in pregnancy

La neuralgia intercostaland it is a rather common disorder in pregnancy, especially towards the third trimester of gestation, but what are the causes of rib pain in pregnancy and how can we intervene to alleviate the discomfort? La neuralgia intercostale it causes severe pain in the chest and also causes significant discomfort, especially if it is quite frequent.





Intercostal pains in pregnancy

Intercostal pains occur more frequently in the second and third trimester of pregnancy, especially as a result of numerous changes occurring in the female body when a baby is expecting. Generally, at the end of gestation, the painful twinges and spasms begin to disappear because the baby is channeled in preparation for delivery.



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Causes pain in the ribs and side in pregnancy

Among the most frequent causes of intercostal neuralgia are:

  • hormonal changes which favor the gradual increase of the liquid which in turn causes an edema that compresses the nerves;
  • due to the increase in volume from the uterus, breathing can be more difficult because there is less space in the intercostal satiety and this causes the nerves in this space to be compressed, even very painful;
  • shortage of Vitamins;
  • il breast it increases in volume and size and weighs more, this causes a bowing of the back and incorrect posture;
  • the increase in levels of progesterone promote an extension of the ligaments of the muscles around the pelvic area and can promote pain in the ribs;
  • infectious diseases such as Herpes zoster and other infectious diseases: bacteria tend to distribute toxins throughout the body and cause nerve damage;
  • spinal problems or posture abnormalities.

Pain in the diaphragm in pregnancy

One of the symptomatologies most frequent of intercostal neuralgia in pregnancy is the pain in the diaphragm which is sharpened in particular moments: it seems not to show up when lying down or at rest, while coughing, sneezing or sudden movements of the body can trigger pain, as well as simple breathing.

Pain is accompanied by

  • sweating
  • muscle contractions
  • numbness of the skin areas that are in the area of ​​the affected nerve,
  • spasms.

When pressing on the diaphragm area the pain increases.

Pain in the center of the chest in pregnancy

Of course, even if in most cases the intercostal pains are not a symptom of a serious illness, but only a physiological response to the changes that are taking place in the body of the expectant mother, one cannot underestimate an intense pain in the chest that goes always reported to the doctor. If needed, the doctor may prescribe more specific diagnostic tests to understand the nature of the pain, as well as an ultrasound.

Right sided rib pain in pregnancy

If it bbaby moves on the right side of the uterus, especially towards the end of pregnancy, its weight and its movements can favor the comparison of pain and stinging in this area of ​​the side. The right flank pain on the rib in pregnancy it can also be caused, towards the end of pregnancy, by the changes that are taking place in the body, with a real shift of organs and structural changes to the pelvis that serve to make room for the baby and prepare the body for delivery.

Read also: Understanding bellyache in pregnancy: how to behave

Pain under the breastbone in pregnancy

Il pain under the ribs it is essentially caused by the increase in the size of the uterus which exerts a strong pressure on this area and also on the nerves, but it can also be favored, in the second and third trimesters, by the baby's movements in the belly and by its kicking. The pain associated with the child's position is especially acute when one is in a sitting position: just think that at the XNUMXth week the child is really big and practically reaches the area just below the breastbone. After the thirty-seventh week, the baby begins to channel itself towards the birth canal and this causes in most cases a nice relief.

Intercostal pains in pregnancy, remedies

Il treatment timely neuralgia in pregnant women is aimed above all at eliminating pain and spasms or at least at reducing their frequency. The doctor will be able to study the situation and possibly prescribe drugs pain relievers, such as acetaminophen, but some more natural remedies can still help you find relief:

  • heat: a warm cloth can relieve muscle tension and help breathing even when intercostal pain occurs;
  • wearing a special prenatal sling;
  • properly integrate vitamins in the diet or by taking a multivitamin supplement;
  • rest in bed when crises are very painful on a mattress that is as rigid as possible;
  • arrange pillows when you lie down;
  • in a sitting position, keep your back straight and do not assume a more sloping forward position;
  • do not sit for too long;
  • wearing a bra of the right size that lifts and supports the breasts adequately;
  • do some stretching or swimming exercises that lighten the weight of the whole body and release tension;
  • yoga can be useful during pregnancy, especially if you suffer from intercostal pains, because it promotes breathing, relaxation and relieves tensions with suitable movements of muscles and joints;
  • it may be useful to consult a osteopath who offers simple exercises to prevent painful crises in the side.
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