It is not uncommon to experience cramping at some stage during your pregnancy and there are many reasons as to why you may experience this.
However severe cramping or stomach pain is not normal and should you experience any cramping or pains in conjunction with any of the following symptoms, you need to call your healthcare provider as soon as possible:
- bleeding – primarily bright red blood
- Lightheaded, dizziness or faint
- Vaginal discharge
Normal causes for stomach cramps during pregnancy
There are a number of reasons why you may experience cramping during different stages of pregnancy, and these may include:
- Implantation – many women experience a pain which is similar to their period pain during the first weeks and this is usually caused when implantation takes place.
- Ligaments Stretching – this is usually more common during the second trimester, as the muscles and ligaments which are supporting your growing uterus stretch.
- False Labor – it is not uncommon for women to experience false labor or Braxton Hicks during the third trimester. This is caused by the muscles in the uterus preparing for labor as they stretch and release, often at irregular intervals.
- Gas – if you are suffering from gas, then there is a good chance that you may experience some cramping associated with it.
- Constipation – of course the same would apply if you were constipated.
- Cramps – in the last remaining weeks of your pregnancy cramping is an early sign of labor.
What can you do about abdominal pains?
If you are suffering from abdominal pains or cramps during your pregnancy, then try the following:
- Avoid quick positional changes.
- Try bending backwards to relieve the pain. Just be sure not to put too much strain on your back – otherwise you could end up with back ache as well.
- If you are suffering from gas then walking or some other forms of exercise which are not too stressful can often relieve gas pains.
When should you call your doctor?
During the first weeks of your pregnancy severe cramping is often a sign of an Ectopic pregnancy. There may also be other reasons why you may experience cramping, and these include:
- Stomach virus
- Food poisoning
- Urinary infection
- Kidney infection
There are of course other reasons as to why you may be suffering from stomach cramps, but if the cramps are severe, then you should inform your healthcare provider ASAP.