Often people don’t share about their poop issues they experience in pregnancy. They can be all too real. Let’s dive in and learn about these common issues.
Blame the dog if you want but odds are you will be gassier in pregnancy. This can start early on and at any time. We can thank all this extra farting to the increased levels of the hormone progesterone. Progesterone actually causes the muscles of the digestive tract to relax. Because of this more gas can escape. On top of that, as your baby grows, the pressure in your abdomen also increases which adds to more gas being pushed out.
HOW CAN I HELP REDUCE THE GAS?
-Add more exercise to your daily activity. By doing this you can stimulate digestion and keep the gas moving.
-Eat smaller meals throughout the day.
-Avoid trigger foods. Some foods that can be triggering are: fatty & fried foods, beans, sprouts, broccoli and whole grains.
Constipation can happen very early into pregnancy, and it is known to occur at any point and in any trimester. That pesky hormone progesterone relaxing our digestive tract muscles means that things move more slowly. For some their prenatal vitamins or iron supplements could be the culprit as well.
Pro-tip: Address constipation right away, don’t wait! This can help you avoid hemorrhoids from developing.
HOW CAN I HELP ALLEVIATE CONSTIPATION?
-By increasing your amount of daily exercise, you help keep your body functions moving.
-Increase your fiber consumption and drink lots of water.
–Squatty potties help get you in a good pooping position.
-Talk to your care provider about your vitamins and if it is related.
The dreaded hemorrhoids. These friends usually pop up in the last trimester. Hemorrhoids are simply swollen veins in your lower rectum. Good news is they usually resolve on their own some time after delivery. Between experiencing constipation and so much pressure on the rectum from your growing baby in your uterus, it can be common to experience hemorrhoids. Sometimes they can cause pain and/or itchiness. They can be internal or external around your anus.
HOW CAN I MAKE HEMORRHOIDS GO AWAY?
-Warm baths, or witch hazel soaks & witch hazel pads, can help.
-Being mindful not to stand or sit for too long of stretches.
-Medicated Tucks pads, Preparation H, or other over the counter remedies ease the pain and calms the itchiness.
-If they hang around after your baby is born and are causing a lot of discomfort it is good to talk to your doctor.
In a perfect world none of us would experience any of these, but odds are we will all likely cross paths with one or all of these in pregnancy. Doulas are never too shy to talk about these so never be afraid to give your doula a call!
Authored by: Andrea Stainbrook