## Upper Abdominal Pain During Pregnancy
Upper abdominal pain during pregnancy is not uncommon, affecting up to 80 percent of expecting mothers. The pain can range from mild to severe and often results in feelings of discomfort and unease. Occurring most commonly in the second or third trimester of pregnancy, upper abdominal pain can be caused by a number of different issues that expectant mothers should be aware of and treat accordingly.
### Causes of Upper Abdominal Pain During Pregnancy
Below are some of the most common causes of upper abdominal pain during pregnancy:
* Stomach Flu: The stomach flu, or gastroenteritis, can cause severe cramping in the upper abdominal area as well as nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.
* Muscle Aches and Pain: Your baby growing and the muscles in your abdomen expanding to accommodate them can cause aches and pains.
* Constipation: This is a common issue for pregnant women and can cause severe upper abdominal pain.
* Urinary Tract Infection (UTI): Uncomfortable burning and persistent pain in the lower abdomen can be a sign of a UTI.
* Hormone Changes: Fluctuations in your body’s hormone levels can cause pain in the upper abdominal area.
### Symptoms of Upper Abdominal Pain During Pregnancy
Below are the most common symptoms associated with upper abdominal pain during pregnancy:
* Persistent aching in your upper abdomen
* Pressure or cramping in your abdomen
* Pain when taking a deep breath in or out
* Pain that is worse when you sit or stand
* Sharp, shooting pains in your abdomen
### Prevention and Treatment
If you are experiencing any of the aforementioned symptoms, it’s important to talk to your doctor. They will be able to diagnose your condition and help to determine the cause of your pain. To help prevent the discomfort of upper abdominal pain during pregnancy, try the following:
* Stay hydrated and drink plenty of fluids
* Eat high-fiber foods, such as vegetables and whole grains
* Exercise regularly
* Get enough rest
* Avoid heavy lifting or strenuous activities
If the pain persists, your doctor may recommend taking over the counter medication to help alleviate the pain. However, it’s important to speak with a medical professional before taking any medication, as certain medications can be unsafe during pregnancy.
Regardless of the cause, upper abdominal pain during pregnancy is a very common complaint and should not cause too much worry; however, if the pain is severe or becomes more severe, it’s important to contact a doctor for further advice.
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