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Pregnancy: Pelvic and Hip Pain

Overview

It's normal to get aches and pains in your hips and pelvic area when you're pregnant. Pregnancy hormones are relaxing your ligaments. This loosens up your pelvic bones so they can shift and open for childbirth.

Try these tips to manage pelvic and hip pain.

  • Lie on your back, propped up on your elbows or a pillow. Then squeeze a pillow between your knees.

    This can help realign your pelvic bones.

  • Wear a prenatal belt or girdle around your hips, under your belly.

    It can help stabilize your hips.

  • Sleep with a pillow between your knees.

    This may help relieve pain.

  • Rest when you can.

    When you rest, it may help to apply heat to the painful areas.

  • Try acupuncture treatments or learn pelvic stabilizing exercises from a physical therapist.

    These exercises strengthen the muscles that support your pelvis. Both acupuncture and stabilizing exercises can help reduce pelvic pain during pregnancy.

    footnote 1
  • Ask your doctor or midwife if a safe pain reliever might help.

References

Citations

  1. Elden H, et al. (2005). Effects of acupuncture and stabilising exercises as adjunct to standard treatment in pregnant women with pelvic girdle pain: Randomised single blind controlled trial. BMJ, 330(7494): 761.

Credits

Current as of: February 23, 2022

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
Sarah Marshall MD - Family Medicine
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Kirtly Jones MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology