I know that it’s normal to go through pregnancy with aches and pains and the feeling that you won’t be able to get comfortable ever again. But there is also more severe pain that I did not experience with Brooklyn, but I am struggling with during this pregnancy. About a month or two ago (around 30 weeks pregnant), I started having some bad aches in my pelvis. It seemed to be aggravated when I would walk or work out, which I had been consistently doing up until that point. I tried to do more stretching and prenatal yoga to cope with the pain in my pelvis. That would bring temporary relief, however, no matter my efforts, the pain increased during the next couple of weeks to a constant bruising feeling and sharp pains in my pelvis and lower back. Literally, sometimes it feels like my pelvis is going to break in half. Over talking with my midwife and doing research, I found out that I definitely have a condition called “symphysis pubis dysfunction,” or SPD. It is not harmful to the baby, and he has always been healthy during this pregnancy. I am so thankful for that! SPD is when the relaxin in your body causes your pelvis to loosen and grind together when you move. It can cause nerve pain and sciatic pain, as well (lightning crotch). It is a real beast sometimes, and it can be completely debilitating. It makes everyday tasks, like standing and walking, feel impossible at times. I am told that SPD does not affect labor and delivery, and it goes away after birth. I really hope and pray that is the case! My midwife suggested that I wear a maternity support belt, which seems to help a little with the aching pain. Try to keep your knees together when standing up, getting out of bed or the car, and changing positions at night. Avoid any hip opening stretches and leg exercises. Also, it is helpful to do core strengthening exercises, that are safe for pregnancy, of course. I’m sure that staying away from inflaming foods, such as sugar and gluten, will help with the degree of pain, as well. But I really feel like the key to managing SPD pain is to stay off your feet as much as you can. Visit s chiropractor if you can. Don’t squat down or do too much walking, lifting, or carrying- which is basically impossible when you have a toddler to keep alive, but just do what your life allows.
The surprising fact to me is that approximately one third of pregnant moms experience some type of SPD pain during pregnancy, and a lot of them don’t recognize what it is. There are different degrees of the pain, and it can be excruciating. There isn’t a lot of information out there about how to deal with SPD, so it can be frustrating to find support and tips to help manage the pain. That’s why I feel the need to share my experience with y’all. If I encourage just one mama, that is a job well done. One of my biggest struggles (besides the pain) is feeling “mom guilt.” Its tough when I can’t take B outside or to the park because my pelvis is hurting, or when I can’t stand and do the dishes at night, or when I can only sit and put my feet up rather than checking off things on my to-do list. Those things make me feel guilty sometimes. I really need to learn how to just chill out and rest and do what is the best for baby boy and me. My husband has been a huge help when it comes to household chores, taking care of B, and encouraging me to rest. I really miss walking without SPD pain and working out, but those are things that I am willing to sacrifice for the health of my baby. So, for the next four weeks or so, you can find me at home on my couch or in bed on bad days. I will probably go out a few times a week so I don’t go completely insane, but I will really limit my amount of walking. Being pregnant with baby number two while having a busy one and a half year old at the same time is hard enough, so I want to stay as healthy as possible and out of pain as much as I can control.
Stay encouraged, friends, and don’t have mom guilt if you can’t do all of the activities you are used to. The most important thing is keeping you and your baby healthy. If you have had SPD, are going through it now, or have any tips, share them with me! Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me! Let’s stay informed and encouraged. Help a mama out.