Numbness During Pregnancy – Causes, and Advice
It is not unusual to have body parts which feel numb during the final weeks of pregnancy. Each woman receives a different cocktail of pregnancy symptoms, and there are a number of different reasons you might experience numbness during pregnancy. Read on for more information about some of the different areas which might become numb, what it might mean, and what you can do about it.
Numbness in hands during pregnancy:
A numb feeling in your hands during pregnancy could be a sign of:
Poor blood circulation:
It may be that the numbness is caused by a lack of blood circulating to your hands and fingers. Ensure that you are staying hydrated (at least 8 glasses of water every day), that your diet includes the right levels of calcium and iron, and that you remain as active as possible.
Lack of movement and activity:
One of the key causes of poor blood circulation is a lack of movement, particularly when uncomfortable symptoms begin to slow you down in the third trimester. Try and get at least 20 minutes of exercise each day and to stretch your arms, hands, and fingers regularly.
Carpal tunnel syndrome:
This syndrome is fairly common during pregnancy and is one of the most likely causes of numbness during pregnancy. It is caused by a build-up of fluid in the wrists and may need to be treated with splints. If you notice that the numb feeling is accompanied by swelling, you should see your doctor.
Many pregnant women are not getting enough iron and calcium, and deficiency in both of these minerals can contribute to numbness of both the hands and feet.
This is a common late pregnancy symptom, caused by a build-up of fluid in the extremities. Provided that it is not accompanied by swelling, it does not put you at any great risk, but it should still be discussed with your midwife or obstetrician at your next appointment.
Numbness in legs during pregnancy:
If the numb feeling is in your legs or ankles, it could be attributed to any of the symptoms above. Or it could be because your growing baby is putting pressure on one of the nerves which run down your legs. If this is the case, some gentle stretches and exercises or sitting on a gym ball may help to encourage the baby to wriggle off your nerves and make life a little more comfortable.
Numbness of the belly during pregnancy:
If you feel like there’s no feeling in the skin of your belly during late pregnancy, it’s nothing to worry about. It’s simply the result of your skin being stretched to the limit to accommodate your baby. The nerve receptors in your skin will return to normal after your baby arrives.
When to call your professionals about pregnancy numbness:
If numbness in hands and feet during pregnancy is accompanied by tingling or swelling, or if the feeling is also present in your face, it’s time to get in touch with your midwife or obstetrician. These symptoms can be a sign of serious complications such as pre-eclampsia. If the numbness isn’t serious or disruptive, you should note it down in your symptoms journal and discuss it at your next appointment.
If the numbness isn’t serious or disruptive, you should note it down in your symptoms journal and discuss it at your next appointment. It’s always a good idea to talk to your team about any changes to your body, no matter how small they seem to you. They could be a puzzle piece in a larger picture that your midwife or obstetrician can see but you can’t.
Do you have a question about pregnancy numbness?
Remember that no question is a stupid question. If you’ve read the article and you’re still wondering something about tingling and numbness during pregnancy, it’s likely that other women are wondering exactly the same thing. Feel free to post your question in the comments section below or to send a private message through our contact us page. We look forward to hearing from you!
More Articles and Information about the Third Trimester of Pregnancy:
Numbness is a common symptom of late pregnancy. But what other symptoms and developments can you expect in the final months before you give birth? And what tasks should be on your to-do list? Check out our complete guide to the third trimester of pregnancy here.
Keeping active during the third trimester can be a real challenge. You’re tired, you’re uncomfortable, and exercising is probably the last thing you feel like doing! But exercise will help stimulate blood flow and keep numbness and other uncomfortable pregnancy symptoms at bay. Check out our guide to effective late pregnancy workouts here.
Do you know the difference between a Braxton Hicks contraction and the real thing? Read more about the earliest signs of labor so you know what you’re looking out for when the time finally comes.