Singer, songwriter and dancer, Ciara, recently gave birth to her third child!
In a recent interview with People, she shared that her third trimester was tough—she experienced a significant amount of pain.
She said, "My body was so achy I thought I was going to need a cane at the end of my pregnancy, to be honest," Ciara said. "I was penguin-walking throughout the house at the end."
This makes it even more impressive that she was in labor when filming the video for her hit song, Rooted.
While Ciara didn't specify what was causing her pain, my hunch is that it is a condition called pelvic girdle pain, a relatively common—and super uncomfortable—ailment of pregnancy.
While everyone can experience pelvic girdle pain (and many do to some degree) it can be more common in people who have already been pregnant—it makes sense that Ciara experienced it in her third pregnancy. The joints and ligaments surrounding the pelvis have been stretched before, so it takes less to make them hurt in subsequent pregnancies.
What is pelvic girdle pain?
To get a sense of what's going on in the pelvis during pregnancy, take a look at this illustration from The Motherly Guide to Becoming Mama:
'The Motherly Guide to Becoming Mama'
Pelvic girdle pain (PGP) is the broad term used to describe pain in the joints of the pelvis. The hormone relaxin helps to relax your pelvis so that your baby can fit through during birth: This is a good thing, but it can also lead to pain and potential injury, which can be quite unpleasant. In addition to the impact of relaxin, your pelvis is stressed by the weight of your growing uterus and baby. All of this can lead to an achy pelvis (and an unhappy mama).
There are two types of PGP:
Sacroiliac Joint Dysfunction (SJD): The sacroiliac joint connects the pelvis to the spine. You may have pain in your lower back, on one or both sides, and it may travel down your leg or legs.
Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD): At the front of the pelvis, two bones and ligaments are connected to a joint made of cartilage, called the symphysis pubis. With all the changes going on with the pelvis, this space usually widens a bit, and sometimes too far, in a condition called symphysis pubis dysfunction (or separated symphysis). SPD can cause back pain as well as pain in the front of your pelvis and between your legs. Movement often makes it worse.
How is pelvic girdle pain treated?
Definitely talk to your provider—they can refer you to a physical therapist (which may be covered by insurance) who can help treat it and prevent it from getting worse.
Other ideas to try include:
Wear a maternity support belt.
Use ice packs (apply for 20 minutes at a time, up to four times per day).
Sleep on your side with a pillow between your legs.
Visit an experienced prenatal massage therapist, chiropractor or acupuncturist.
Hang in there, mama. Pelvic girdle pain often gets better after you give birth—we very much hope this was the case for Ciara. If you are still in pain, please speak with your provider for treatment options.
A portion of this article was excerpted from The Motherly Guide to Becoming Mama.
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