As if being pregnant wasn’t taxing and overwhelming enough, expectant mothers might also endure some unusual symptoms, particularly in the latter months. Consider the sensations of numbness and tingling. Toward the conclusion of their pregnancy, some pregnant women may have “pins and needles” or numbing sensations in their hands, fingers, legs, back, or buttocks.
Not only may these sensations be annoying and even painful, but they can also leave you wondering, “What precisely is going on here?“
Lack of sleep is the most common cause of tingling in the second trimester. The feelings of numbness become more severe during the third trimester when blood vessels are constricted by the larger uterus and the changes women make to their sleeping positions. There are no definite remedies for tingling or numb tongue, numb stomach or tummy, or numb legs and feet during this period, but there are suggested measures or techniques to treat them.
The following are the most prevalent numbness and tingling sensations in pregnancy:
- Symptoms worsen when you wake up, in the middle of the night, or when you move your body in specific ways.
- It may feel like “pins and needles,” numbness, or a radiating burning or tingling feeling followed by pain.
- As weight growth and fluid retention rise near the middle or end of pregnancy, this symptom appears.
Hormones, as well as the usual biological changes you’re going through, are responsible for the numbness and tingling you’re feeling. Your body creates more relaxin as your pregnancy continues, allowing your ligaments to extend during pregnancy and labor.
However, your posture and center of gravity alter as a result of more relaxin. Your nerves may be squeezed as a result, resulting in shooting pain and tingling down your legs, thighs, back, and buttocks.
Similarly, when your uterus becomes larger and fuller, it places an unusual amount of strain on your muscles, ligaments, and nerves, which can cause numbness and tingling.
Swelling of the hands and feet is typical in the second and third trimesters of pregnancy owing to water retention. This swelling can cause numbness and tingling in your fingers and toes, as well as place strain on nerves in your wrists, back, legs, thighs, and buttocks.
Fingers and Hands
Numbness and tingling feelings in your hands and fingers are not uncommon, especially as your pregnancy continues. This extra fluid exerts pressure on the median nerve in the wrist, producing carpal tunnel syndrome in certain women.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome during pregnancy –
Carpal tunnel syndrome is very common during pregnancy, with up to 62 percent of pregnant women suffering from it.
Fluid retention, increased weight gain, and hormonal shifts are all causes of carpal tunnel syndrome during pregnancy.
The majority of cases of carpal tunnel syndrome occur in the last few months of pregnancy, however if you’ve had carpal tunnel syndrome before or outside of pregnancy, your symptoms may appear sooner. Symptoms may appear in one or both hands, however symptoms in your dominant hand are generally more severe.
You may encounter the following symptoms if you have carpal tunnel syndrome:
1. Feelings of burning in the hand, wrist, and arm
2. Having trouble gripping items
3. Hand, wrist, and finger numbness
4. In the fingers and hands, there are “pins and needles.”
5. Finger numbness, particularly in the thumb, index, and middle fingers
6. Shoulder, neck, and arm discomfort that radiates
7. Swelling of the fingers and hands
Swelling — all over – is one of the most prevalent pregnant symptoms. Puffiness in the cheeks, legs, and feet is common among patients. However, swelling inside the wrist might cause carpal tunnel syndrome in certain women (CTS).
Carpal tunnel syndrome affects about 4% of individuals in the general population, while it affects 31% to 62 percent of pregnant patients. After 30 weeks of pregnancy, many individuals begin to experience symptoms.
Your blood volume doubles during pregnancy. The additional fluid causes swelling and pressure in your blood vessels all over your body. Swelling can compress the median nerve, which runs to the hand, in tiny areas like the carpal tunnel region of the wrist, through which nine tendons and one nerve travel.
The palm-side surfaces of the thumb, index, and middle fingers, as well as part of the ring finger, are all supplied by the median nerve. It’s also in charge of moving the muscles in your hand that bend your fingers. Nerve compression in the wrist and hand can produce discomfort, tingling, and numbness, which might get worse when you’re attempting to sleep. Pregnancy may be the first time a woman has CTS symptoms, or it may be the final straw that prompts her to seek medical help for her problems.
Buttocks, back, and legs
Lower back discomfort is typical during pregnancy, and it can occasionally spread down your legs and buttocks, especially if pressure is placed on your nerves.
During pregnancy, numbness and tingling in the legs, back, and buttocks are most commonly caused by:
- Retention of fluid
- Relaxin is a hormone that causes your ligaments to loosen.
- Your uterus is developing, and your organs are being crushed.
- Gaining weight
All of this strain, ligament loosening, weight gain, and fluid retention can take a toll on your health. Your muscles may become tight or weak, and your posture may shift as a result.
When you lean forward or backward more frequently, your back muscles have to work harder, resulting in tightness and suffering. When you’re pregnant, you’re also more susceptible to back problems caused by activity.
Due to the hormone relaxin, many women will suffer hypermobility in their joints during pregnancy. The trouble is that all of this flexibility and opening up can cause your body to become unstable, resulting in shooting pain, discomfort, numbness, and tingling in your lower back or legs.
Sciatica, which is caused by a pinched sciatic nerve, is probably the most prevalent cause of tingling and numbness in the back, legs, and buttocks during pregnancy.
This ailment normally appears in the third trimester of pregnancy and is usually moderate, but for some women it can be devastating.
Pain, burning, and aching are some of the symptoms.
Sensations on one side of the body, although sometimes both sides are affected
Symptoms that start in the lower back and spread to the hips, buttocks, and down the leg
Muscle weakness, tingling feelings, and numbness
Pregnancy Meralgia Paresthetica
While sciatica is a frequent pregnant ailment that causes numbness and tingling in the back, legs, and buttocks, a disease known as meralgia paresthetica can also occur. Pressure on the lateral femoral cutaneous nerve (LFCN), which runs along the front and side of your thigh, causes meralgia paresthetica.
Among the signs and symptoms are:
- Aching and discomfort in the thigh that may spread to the outside of the knee
- It’s also possible to have numbness and burning feelings.
- Symptoms include as a “stabbing” sensation in the thigh
- Symptoms that generally affect only one leg (though sometimes the buttocks area is involved as well)
A gentle massage, making sure to change your sleep positions (using a pregnancy body pillow helps a lot), soothing baths, and stretching can all assist with general numbness and tingling of the hands, fingers, back, legs, and buttocks during pregnancy.
Additionally, once your problem has been diagnosed, your doctor may propose therapy.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Treatments
- Ice packs are used to alleviate edema.
- Hands and wrists should be elevated.
- Pain relievers that are safe to use during pregnancy
Treatment for Meralgia and Sciatica Paresthetica
- Pads for heating
- Massage therapy is a type of treatment that involves mass
- Physical therapy is a type of treatment that is used
- Pain relievers that are safe to use during pregnancy
- Sleep on the non-affected side of your body.
- Showers or baths that are warm to keep your wrist in a neutral posture, use a wrist brace or splint
How Do You Deal With Tingling During Pregnancy?
During pregnancy, these solutions may assist with numbness or tingling in the hands, fingers, legs, back, or buttocks.
- Numbness can be relieved by soaking your hands in warm water or applying a hot compress.
- While sleeping, avoid resting on your hands to avoid exacerbating the numbness and pain.
- Consult your doctor before using a wrist brace. It may be used to keep your wrist in a neutral position, especially when sleeping.
- Continuously stretch your hands and wrists while conducting any task. Tingling and soreness may be relieved by repetitive activities such as shaking or rubbing.
- To the side that is not affected by numbness or discomfort, sleep easily.
- Numbness can be caused by swelling, which can be reduced by using an ice compress.
- Acupuncture and massage treatment are examples of alternative therapies that can help with numbness-related discomfort.
- Do not stand for long periods of time as this may cause numbness or tingling in the legs and toes.
- You can sleep on one side, with both knees raised up and a cushion between them. This may help to prevent numbness.
- You can slightly stretch your knees while sitting so that they are at or above the level of your hips.
- If you have trouble balancing your body, use a walker or cane to get around.
- Consult your doctor and attempt some gentle workouts to help strengthen your muscles.
Is it possible to avoid tingling?
You may not be able to prevent tingling, but you may minimize your risks by making dietary and lifestyle adjustments.
- To gain a healthy pregnancy weight, eat a nutritious and balanced diet.
- Reduce your intake of salt, sugar, and fats, and drink plenty of water. Check with your doctor before taking any supplements.
- Avoid alcohol because the chemicals in it might induce nerve damage and numbness.
- Reduce the amount of time you spend doing things like typing, crocheting, or sewing, especially if you’re prone to carpal tunnel syndrome.
- Get a supportive maternity bra to relieve the strain on your median nerve caused by the weight of your breastbone and rib cage.
- When sitting, standing, or sleeping, it is critical to maintain proper posture.
- Wear shoes with soft soles that are well-fitting and non-skid.
When Should You Visit Your Doctor?
The majority of incidences of numbness and tingling during pregnancy are frequent and normal. Any new symptoms, on the other hand, should be shared with your healthcare physician. If you have any symptoms in addition to the numbness and tingling, such as vaginal bleeding, severe stomach discomfort, contractions, severe headaches, hazy vision, or significant swelling, contact your healthcare professional immediately.
Weight increase, fluid retention, and hormones are the most common causes of numbness and tingling during pregnancy. In some circumstances, such as pregnancy-induced carpal tunnel syndrome, sciatica, or meralgia paresthetica, a pinched nerve may be implicated. In some circumstances, all that is necessary for relief is at-home remedies, physical therapy, or doctor-approved pain medication.
Although most cases of numbness and tingling during pregnancy are harmless, numbness and tingling are indicators of certain more dangerous diseases. If you suspect any of the illnesses listed below, go to your doctor right away because they can lead to grave issues during pregnancy.
Iron-deficiency causing anemia can produce “restless leg syndrome” during pregnancy, which can be accompanied by tingling or a “creepy-crawly” sensation in the legs.
Nerve damage from a B12 shortage during pregnancy can cause numbness and tingling in the hands, as well as overall muscular weakness, difficulty walking, memory loss, and mental health issues.
Preeclampsia is a dangerous pregnancy syndrome that can cause significant swelling and numbness and tingling. Call your doctor right away if your tingling and numbness feelings are followed by visual problems, severe headaches, decreased urine output, severe stomach pain, vomiting, nausea, or seizures.
Diabetes during Pregnancy
Tingling and numbness in the hands and feet are common signs of gestational diabetes. If you’ve already been diagnosed with gestational diabetes, these symptoms might indicate that your condition isn’t being effectively controlled.
Tingling and numbness, as well as any other new symptoms that may be related to your gestational diabetes diagnosis and management, should be discussed with your healthcare practitioner.
Pregnancy is full of unexpected twists and turns. Most of us aren’t aware of the wide range of uncommon pregnancy symptoms, but now you can add numbness and tingling in the fingers, hands, legs, back, and buttocks to that list.
However, you should be assured that, while these symptoms might be annoying at times, they are typically not significant and will diminish once your baby comes. Although any new pregnancy symptom should be taken carefully, numbness and tingling by themselves seldom suggest a more serious issue.