Read on to find out how to prevent leg
cramps during pregnancy and some tips on dealing with
Leg cramps are a common occurrence
during pregnancy especially in the third trimester. Studies have revealed that
nearly half of all expecting women experience leg cramps. They occur more
frequently towards the evening and night. Though the exact reasons for these
sometimes excruciating leg spasms are unknown, many theories abound for the
same. The most common supposition is that the developing baby and expanding
uterus exert pressure on the arteries that go into the legs. Other factors that
are blamed for the leg
cramps are nutritional deficiencies. As the volume of blood rises
there is a dilution of nutrients such as calcium and potassium. This
may lead to painful cramps in the legs.
Preventing Leg Cramps during
Here is how you can prevent
leg cramps during pregnancy.
Try not to sit or stand for
extended periods of time especially with legs that are crossed. Crossing your
legs limits the blood supply to your legs and may cause swelling.
In case you need to sit or stand
for a long time, prop up your legs on a small table or take little walks. This
will help to ease up the blood circulation to your legs.
Ensure that you exercise
regularly as directed by your doctor. The exercise routines will help tone up
your muscles and also increase blood circulation and oxygen supply to the
different parts of your body.
Drink plenty of fluids especially
water. This will keep your body well hydrated ensuring easy relaxation and
contraction of muscles of the legs.
Having a warm luxurious bath before
bedtime is a good idea to help you relax and cope with the painful cramps when
Make it a habit before getting
into bed to perform gentle exercises that stretch the calf area muscles. This
will get rid of accumulated stiffness in the region and unwind
Absolutely avoid lying on your
back as this may increase chances of leg cramps. Lying on your back decreases
the blood supply to your legs. Always lie on your left side which will boost
While in bed, do not point your
toes as this may cause leg cramps.
supplements containing calcium and magnesium. However, it is
essential that you consult your doctor or health care provider before doing so
to avoid possible complications or health issues.
Eat potassium rich foods such as
dried apricots, potatoes, soy flour, raisins, molasses and bananas. Molasses is
rich in potassium and one spoon of molasses has more potassium than even two
bananas. You could substitute molasses as a sweetener for bread cookies,
biscuits or pancakes.
Alternate periods of activity with
adequate rest and wear support tights can help to prevent with leg
on Managing Leg Pain during Pregnancy
how you can manage leg pain during pregnancy.
If you suddenly experience a painful leg
cramp, try not to panic. Immediately stop whatever you are doing and take a
deep breath. Panicking may aggravate the pain felt by the cramps. Take several
deep breaths and concentrate on soothing
Do Some Gentle
Stretch your legs gently. If
you can manage, try standing up. Slowly crook your foot at the heel and flex
your toes up pointing toward your knee. Also try walking around in circles
until you feel relief from the pain. You could also try massaging the area
in-between your first and second toes.
Do a Gentle
You can massage the painful area or have
your partner or someone else gently massage the area affected by the painful
spasms and soak it in lukewarm water.
Use Heat Pad
or Hot Water Bag
Apply a heat pad, hot water bag
or a warm towel to the area of the cramps to relax the muscle. However, if the
pain persists, occurs more frequently than usual or if there is a swelling or
inflammation in your legs, visit your doctor. There might be a possibly of a
blood clot which may require immediate medical
Leg cramps are an uncomfortable part of the
complicated process of pregnancy. New life is being developed and sustained
within your body. However, if you take adequate steps and precautions to prevent
these painful leg cramps, you can reduce their frequency. And if you also know
what to do when you are struck by these painful muscle pains during pregnancy,
you can deal with them better.
the causes for leg cramps during pregnancy? How to prevent leg cramps during
pregnancy? What are the home remedies for dealing with leg cramps during
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- The Indiaparenting Team