Chest Pain During Pregnancy

Chest Pain During Pregnancy

Chest pain during your pregnancy can be caused by many things, and it’s important to keep in mind that a pregnant mother is going to experience pains that are unavoidable, inevitable and down right painful throughout the pregnancy term. Chest pain, although scary at times, can be normal, due to things such as foods, or it can be the sign that something else is very wrong. If you’re experiencing chest pains during your pregnancy, you should not wait to contact your doctor. This way, your doctor can determine the cause behind the pain, and ways to treat the pain.

Causes of Chest Pain

As mentioned before, there are many different reasons why you would experience chest pain, and reasons range from minor to major problems. Some of the most common causes of chest pain can be due to:

  • Heartburn- This could be caused by indigestion, gas or eating/drinking certain foods and beverages. If you suffered from heartburn before your pregnancy, it’s important you discuss this with your doctor.
  • Indigestion- Indigestion is caused when gas is trapped in your chest. This can cause severe pain for extended periods of time, so it’s important you avoid certain foods that give you indigestion (especially if they gave you gas before you were pregnant).
  • Pressure from Baby- As the baby grows, your body is transforming. During this transformation, chest pain could be triggered from the pressure on your ribs or diaphragm.
  • Stress- Besides causing muscle tension and other pain, stress can cause chest pain too. Find what it is that is stressing you out, and cut it out of your routine if possible.
  • Breasts- As your pregnancy progresses, the size of your breasts will become larger. This can be the cause of your shortness of breath or chest pain.
  • Asthma- If you have asthma before you get pregnant, your pregnancy will more than likely trigger your symptoms making it difficult to breathe after normal activities. Talk with your doctor to make sure your asthma medication is appropriate for you to be taking while you’re pregnant.
  • Widening of Rib Cage- As your pregnancy progresses, so does your rib cage. This can cause lots of tension within your chest. As your baby gets bigger and begins putting pressure on your muscles, ribs and diaphragm, shortness of breath tends to follow.

Treating Chest Pain

If your chest pain is severe, persistent or accompanied by shortness of breath, dizziness and weakness, you should call your doctor immediately. Other treatment includes making sure you are taking in the correct amounts of vitamins and nutrients such as iron, calcium and magnesium. Also, taking on a yoga class or other stress relief technique can reduce the amount of pain your body, especially your chest, receives.

[Page updated November 2013]