The reason why pregnant women suffer from chest pain is due to an increase in blood flow to breasts and some hormones which work strongly to prepare for breastfeeding.
Reasons for chest pain during pregnancy
From the 2nd month of pregnancy, the chest of pregnant women will grow gradually and will continue to be bigger during pregnancy. The chest will be much bigger if this is the first pregnancy. In many cases, pregnant women have to get cracked skin. At this time, on the chest there are blood vessels which are clearly visible to the naked eyes. Therefore, pregnant women should wear big size bra in order to feel comfortable.
Chest pain during pregnancy is due to physical changes and hormones to help pregnant women adapt to the development state of the fetus. The hormonal changes in the body increases blood flow in the breast tissues, which makes the chest of the mother look bigger, harder & painful; and which makes it more sensitive when touched. Chest pain is similar to that during the menstrual cycle but it looks worse. Moreover, heartburn can also be a cause of chest pain.
The increase in hormones during pregnancy helps to maintain a lining for the uterus and to soften the ligaments, so it makes the esophagus be impeded and shrunk. Meanwhile, acid from the stomach can reflux back into the esophagus and throat and cause heartburn. However, the development of fetus impedes the diaphragm and stomach, which is a cause of chest pain and maybe relates to heartburn. The more heartburn is, the more serious chest pain is.
Muscle tension also causes pregnant mother’s chest pain. During pregnancy, the chest’s muscles and ligaments which are stretched and appear with some components will cause chest pain.
Normally, chest pain will go away. However, if you see the following signs, you need to visit your doctor as soon as possible:
– Sudden chest pain, cough or difficulty breathing (shortness of breath).
– Chest pain spreading down two arms.
– Chest pain and fever.
– Chest pain and dizziness, difficulty breathing (shortness of breath), sweating abnormally.
These pains can warn you about diseases relating to heart and lungs. If you only have individual symptoms (fever, shortness of breath, sudden cough, dizziness, or abnormal sweating), you should also see despite not having chest pain.
How to prevent and reduce chest pain for pregnant women
Reducing cholesterol and fat to 20% in your daily diet will help to more effectively relieve chest pain. Avoid animal fats, butter, yolk, brain and liver. Using vegetable oil instead of animal fat will be more beneficial for the body.
Mothers should choose lean meats, fish and low-fat & low-milk products; eat plenty of fruits which are good for cardiovascular, such as tomatoes, carrots, spinach…. Mothers should not have hearty meals because it is not good.
The phenomenon of chest pain is also caused by the body’s lack of movement. Therefore, pregnant women should do exercise at least 3 times a week to prevent diseases and improve their own bodies. Because it is during pregnancy, mothers should be careful when exercising, should ask a physician for advices before you do. Of these types, kegel and yoga and walking are considered to be the best solutions for pregnant women.
Relax and reduce stress to have a healthy and balanced life; don’t work too much; perform a full diet; do exercises and play sports in a scientific way. All things will help you have a healthy body. Try to relax as much as possible whenever you feel stressful because it causes chest pain.
Have a warm bath
Some women feel better when standing under a warm shower. Pregnant mothers should remember to control the water temperature. It is the best when the water temperature is the same as your body temperature or is a little lower than 37 degrees Celsius. Overheated water can harm your unborn baby. You could also put some warm oils or ginger/saffron products in the bathtub to relieve muscle tension.
Massage breasts and chest
While being pregnant, pregnant mothers should massage the chest every day for 10 minutes to relieve chest pain. This is one simple and pleasant massage way to help blood circulation, which can make the chest healthy and reduce pain and discomfort caused by chest pain.
How to massage:
Lift your left arm up high, use fingers and palms to get close to the left chest, apply massage to it a little. Move your hands around the chest from left to right, from bottom to top. Do the same with the other.
2nd way: a hand places on the other hand, let elbows be as high as shoulders, pull two palms to get to the chest, hold them for 3 seconds, breathe in and then release your hand and breathe out. Do it 20 times.
Before massage, pregnant women should wipe their chest with a warm and dry towel. Temperature will relax the blood vessels under the skin and stimulate blood circulation better. In the process of massage, you can apply a little massage oil to relax the chest.