Cramps during early pregnancy are a matter of concern for many pregnant women. However, this is not new.
It is an indicator of the various physical changes that happen to accommodate the baby to grow inside the body.
Many women also confuse their pregnancy with their regular menstrual cycle because of the initial mild cramps.
Cramps are usually caused due to the expansion and contraction of the uterus during pregnancy and delivery, respectively. When the egg is fertilized and it implants itself on the uterine wall, a light cramping is experienced.
This may be accompanied with some light bleeding or spotting. This kind of cramping is termed as implantation cramping.
Cramps during early pregnancy are detected in some women just after they are assured of their pregnancy. Now the uterus starts expanding to hold the baby for nine months.
These cramps are quite uncomfortable but then, this is a normal process. However, if you experience severe cramping with heavy bleeding, then you must consult your doctor.
As the uterus expands, the round ligaments surrounding it for support must also expand. This cramping is also called as round ligament pain.
This cramp often comes with back ache and ache in lower abdomen. In addition, constipation is also caused due to the growing abdomen.
The best way of relief from this cramping is proper rest. Again, if it becomes severe or there is heavy bleeding or other unusual symptoms, then it is time to contact the doctors.
Besides these normal occurrences, cramps during early pregnancy are also caused due to miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy.
Whenever you experience severe cramps with pain and tenderness across the abdomen, there could be a possibility of ectopic pregnancy.
This might occur in the first trimester of pregnancy. When the cramps are caused with heavy bleeding and pain lower abdomen, it could be a situation of an early miscarriage. This might crop up within the twelfth week of pregnancy.
Again there is a possibility of late miscarriage as well between the twelve to twenty weeks of pregnancy. If such conditions are encountered, then immediate medical help must be sought.
Apart from these serious conditions, cramps during early pregnancy are a common occurrence and comes as one of the side-effects of pregnancy.
The best way to get off from this pain is to take as much rest as possible. A heating pad when applied to lower abdomen can help cure the pain caused due to the cramps. But then care must be taken while using hot pad. It should not be too hot!
If you experience mild cramps, then you may better lie down with feet up. Lying down comfortably alleviates cramping. At times you may experience cramps with back ache especially while having sex. It is advisable not to go for sex as it may increase the pain caused due to cramps.
Pre-labour cramp is usually less severe than the cramps formed during delivery. A brief walk or simply lying down for a while can be the best remedy for this.
Taking the right food is equally important as taking rest, as far as cramps during early pregnancy are concerned. Hormonal variations usually lower the rate of digestion causing constipation.
This in turn causes abdominal pain. Such cramps can be treated by consuming a good amount of fibre and water, which increases the body’s metabolism and help in checking constipation.
Other than all these simple measures to prevent or at least reduce the pain caused due to cramps, certain medicines and pain killers like acetaminophen can be taken. But ibuprofen or other such medicines are not permitted to be taken.
In fact, no medicines or pain killers should be taken without prior prescription of the health care provider.
Cramps during early pregnancy are a common phenomenon and there is nothing much to worry about.
Rather, if you get mild cramps when pregnant, it is an assurance that your body is preparing itself for the forth coming activities of accommodating a baby and nourishing it till its delivery. Cramping can last throughout the pregnancy as the body keeps changing throughout the whole of pregnancy period.
You may also experience mild abdominal discomfort when pregnant due to the stretching of the uterus. But the good news here is all these pain and discomfort would go away easily by simply resting.
So it is advisable to remain calm and relaxed through these cramps. However, if you find any kind of deviation in these cramps, any severity in pain or other such symptoms, then contact your doctors immediately.