A short summary, a sentence or two. May be left blank.
Required. An illustrative image for the article. Recommended size is 1242 x 1700. Insert the image directly - do not include any other text or HTML.
CURRENTLY NOT USED. A thumbnail image for the article. Minimum recommended size is 200px by 125px and the recommended
aspect ratio is 1.6 width to 1 height. Insert the image directly - do not include any other text or HTML. May be left blank.
Fluctuating hormone levels in pregnancy can cause constipation. An increase in progesterone relaxes your muscles, which sadly doesn’t have the effect you might expect on bowel movements. In fact, it prevents the intestine moving waste along efficiently, meaning slower transit times from plate to, um, pan.
The real kicker is that constipation can sometimes lead to piles, too (try to focus on some of the positive pregnancy symptoms, like your glowing skin and glossy hair if this happens).
How to prevent constipation
When the jokes from well-meaning friends about getting hold of some dynamite wear thin, these tricks are recommended by Mumsnetters:
Drink plenty of water. You’re probably on the loo hourly anyway: how much worse can it get?
Eat lots of fibre-rich foods – fruit and veg, dried fruit like apricots, and beans and lentils. Linseeds, sprinkled on cereal or chucked in your juicer with a load of fruit, often work a treat as well.
Raise your feet when you’re on the loo by investing in a stepstool (comes in handy when potty-training a toddler too - though granted, this probably feels Some Way Off).
Massage the small of your lower back in downwards-sweeping movements.
Meditate. Apparently visualising everything moving smoothly and efficiently can shift things along in reality - though if you're still feeling queasy, this mightn't appeal.
Required. Do not embed images in the body
How to reduce piles
All that straining on the loo plus the weight of your growing baby may lead to piles (haemorrhoids) which, not to put too fine a point on it, are varicose veins in your bum. Now there's five words you never wanted to hear in the same sentence.
Witch hazel gel (keep it in the fridge for added 'ahh' factor when applying)
Cold compresses - a clean flannel kept in a bag in the freezer can be a boon
Cypress oil (diluted in carrier oil) in a warm soothing bath
Using soft wipes instead of ordinary loo roll
Taking the weight off the tender area by sleeping on your side or sitting on a rubber ring. You can use this in the days following birth too (though alas, we don't mean you'll be nipping off to the pool)
If there's bleeding do have a chat with your GP, as this could be an anal fissure rather than piles.
Be warned, piles tend to get worse after pushing in labour - but happily, most disappear not long after you have given birth.
May be left blank, if body is long and there is a natural break to have quotes appear use this secondary body. Do not embed images in the body
A talk URL related to this article. This should just be the URL; not a link.
Talk Link Text
Discuss pregnancy ailments - warts (or piles) and all
The text for the link to a talk thread. This should just be the text of the link; not a URL which should instead be entered above.
This is used to encourage users to capture something in their journal. For example, "Take a picture!"