Breathlessness is common
in pregnancy and unless any serious health problem, it is not going to bring
any harm to your baby. Read more to learn how to overcome the problems of
shortness of breath during
Pregnancy brings in many
changes in woman’s body and there are some common discomforts that every
pregnant woman feels either throughout or in most part of the term.
Breathlessness is one of the common problems that usually pregnant women face.
When it starts during first trimester or second trimester, it can be scary for
Short of breath is quite common, but breathlessness
happens when you have gained a lot of weight during pregnancy or you are
expecting twins or perhaps more. However, this discomfort is mild in normal
pregnancy and will not disrupt your daily
What causes breathlessness during
The most prominent cause
of breathlessness during pregnancy
is that the body tries to adapt itself to carry a growing baby inside.
Secondly, if you are used to wearing tight clothes, in early pregnancy when the
ribcage gets broadened, you might find short of breath because the increasing
ribcage would struggle to fit in your tight outfit.
pregnancy, the body adapts the way it takes in oxygen and so your body becomes
sensitive to the amount of carbon dioxide more than before. This leaves the
woman feeling winded and short of breath as well.
later period of pregnancy, the growing size of the baby also makes you feel
breathless. This is mainly because the growing size of the uterus pushes the
ribcage and presses the lungs, which causes breathlessness in pregnant
Causes of shortness of breath can also be serious. It
can be due to anemia, serious heart disease or pulmonary disease. Therefore, if
chest pain, dizziness,
coughing off blood is accompanied with breathlessness, consult your doctor
immediately. Also, if breathlessness does not calm down after taking rest, you
should contact your doctor because it can be a serious matter
Although feeling huffed and puffed even after doing
some light work may not make you feel good, there is not much to worry unless
you get relieved and calm down after taking some rest. This shortness of breath
is completely normal and harmless as
At times, I can't breathe. Is this due to
Yes, especially as
pregnancy advances. Hormones activated by pregnancy swell the
capillaries of the respiratory tract and relax the muscles of the lungs and
bronchial tubes. Furthermore, the growing uterus also pushes up against the
diaphragm, and makes it difficult for the lungs to expand fully. This leads to
breathlessness. But if the breathlessness increases in severity, you require
immediate medical attention.
When I have difficulty breathing, does my
baby get enough oxygen?
shown that women actually allow more oxygen into their systems and even use it
more efficiently than normal during pregnancy. However, because the growing
uterus is crowding the lungs, you feel a shortness of breath. Approximately, 2
or 3 weeks before delivery,
when the foetus settles into the pelvis (also called "lightening" or
"dropping"), you would be able to breathe more easily. Until then,
sleep in a semi-propped position and do not slump when sitting. Rest as much as
you can. Your baby will be fine. However, if your shortness of breath is
severe, do consult your doctor.
to do when feeling
Although the feeling
is normal and harmless, it is good to take rest in
Do all your work slowly and take
things slowly than before.
Remember, not to push yourself too
hard when you are engaged in any physical activity.
Pay attention to your posture when
you are sitting. Sit up straight keeping your shoulders back. This will give
your lungs enough space to expand comfortably.
At bed, prop up yourself a bit by
adding extra pillows beneath your head and upper body. You will get much
No matter how often you feel breathlessness, after
childbirth you will get back to normal
Can breathlessness indicate serious
Slight breathlessness or
short of breath that subsides with rest can be considered
However, if you have any other problem like asthma
or pneumonia, it can become serious when you are
Also, there are changes in blood clotting seen
during pregnancy and you can be at risk of pulmonary embolism, which is rare,
but very serious.
If you feel shortness of breath suddenly
and it gets severe, it can be a sign of serious medical
Get medical help immediately if breathlessness is
Psychologically feeling that you
are not getting enough oxygen
A persistent cough
If you look pale or there is blue
tinge surrounding your lips, toes or
Until you have any serious problem, breathlessness
will not do any harm to your baby.
are the causes of breathlessness during pregnancy? How to deal with
breathlessness during pregnancy? How to prevent breathlessness during
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- The Indiaparenting Team