Pregnant belly

Managing Pregnancy Pain

Pregnancy can be an exciting time, but it can also bring pain in different areas of the body. There are different strategies and health professionals that can help with managing pregnancy pain. A Pedorthist is one of these health professionals that can help with pain. Keeping the feet controlled may not be an initial thought during pregnancy, but it can affect more than most people realize.

What happens in pregnancy

While pregnant, the body releases a hormone called relaxin. This hormone is important for pregnancy, but it can come with unwanted side effects. These side effects may become more apparent after the first pregnancy, because relaxin is released earlier after the first pregnancy.

Because of the growing baby, the increased blood volume, and all the other changing systems in the body during pregnancy, there is extra weight on the body. This added weight increases the stress and strain to the body, and especially the feet and lower limbs while walking and standing.

Back Pain and Pregnancy

Seeing a Pedorthist for foot orthotics and proper shoes can be a secondary factor to help with back pain. Most of the back pain from pregnancy is related directly to the changes in the body around the lower back and hips. If the feet are rolling in or out excessively, it can contribute to the strain put on the lower back. With the extra weight on the feet and the hormone relaxin, the feet may collapse more than normal, further exaggerating the strain in the lower back.

Sciatica is a common diagnosis that can be developed or exaggerated during pregnancy. Pain is typically felt down one leg. The feet can contribute because when the feet roll in or out, the lower and upper legs respond in the same way. This adds stress to the sciatic nerve in the back. This is especially relevant if one foot rolls in or out more than the other foot. The difference between the right and left foot creates an imbalance at the hips and lower back.

Foot Pain and Pregnancy

Foot pain can be common in pregnancy. With the extra weight being put on the body in the months of pregnancy, there is extra weight on the feet. Issues that were underlying prior to pregnancy, may arise during pregnancy because of the extra weight and the hormone relaxin.

Swelling and Pregnancy

Swelling is very common in pregnancy, especially as pregnancy progresses. Compression socks are a great way to control the swelling and prevent achiness and leg cramps associated with the swelling.

Tools to Manage Pregnancy Pain


Orthotics are great in managing pregnancy pain in the feet, knees, hips and lower back pain. If you are on your feet for most of the day or exercising during pregnancy, orthotics can help to reduce pain and to prevent pain from developing.

Orthotics can help in a few different ways, but a main focus is typically arch support to prevent the arches from rolling in. They can also aid with shock absorption, additional support to angle the feet in different directions, and to offload specific areas.

Proper Shoes

Wearing the appropriate shoes during pregnancy can make the difference between achy legs and feet, and comfort.

Shoes that fit prior to pregnancy may now become tight during pregnancy. This can be from swelling, or if the feet start to spread out. A wider shoe and an adjustable closure are a couple areas to be aware of when finding a comfortable shoe.

During this time, it may be a good idea to wear shoes or supportive sandals around the house. Many people don’t realize how often they are on their feet around the house.

Compression Socks

Compression socks are a great tool to use to prevent swelling by the end of the day, or control the swelling that has already developed. If you are standing a lot during the day, compression socks may be a great tool to adopt before any swelling becomes worse.

What other health professionals are beneficial for pregnancy?

Pregnant and lying on massage table on sideThere are many different health professionals that can help with the aches and pains associated with pregnancy.

A Pelvic Floor Physiotherapist is a great health professional to see during pregnancy. They help with pain and discomfort during pregnancy. They also help with the recovery after labour, whether that’s a vaginal birth or a c-section. There are a lot of changes occurring in the body, and they are able to recognize what areas need assistance.

A Chiropractor is another health professional to see during pregnancy and in the post-partum period. They can help with pain, but they are also great to see for general health. For example, if the hips are rotated, this can affect how the baby is sitting inside the body.

A Massage Therapist can be a benefit during pregnancy. It helps the body relax, and reduce tension in specific areas causing pain. Massage therapy may need to be less aggressive during this time because certain areas may need strong muscles to prevent pain from excessive motion.

If you have any questions or would like your feet checked during pregnancy, feel free to contact us to book an appointment.

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