I began sweating out of fear. My imagination went wild – can I survive this pain at all, what if something happened to me, who will take care of my baby…..! I was in the seventh month when I experienced chest pain for the first time. I didn’t know what to do, so, I grabbed my phone and called up my gynecologist.
I could only relax after she told me that chest pain during pregnancy was normal. However, it could prove to be dangerous sometimes. MomJunction tells you under what circumstances you can get chest pain, and what you can do to get relief from it.
Is Chest Pain Normal During Pregnancy?
A feeling of fullness or discomfort in your chest is normal. However, you may have to see a doctor if there is numbness down your arm or persistent pain causing shortness of breath.
Causes Of Chest Pain During Pregnancy:
Chest pain can be a result of some regular problems pregnant women face. It could also be due to something more severe. The likely causes of pain in the chest during pregnancy are:
Indigestion, acid reflux or eating fatty food can trigger heartburn, thereby causing sharp chest pain during pregnancy. Many pregnant women experience heartburn as the increased level of progesterone relaxes the sphincter that separates the stomach and esophagus (1).
3. Rib cage widening:
During pregnancy, the rib cage widens, thereby, creating muscular tension in the chest. As the baby grows bigger and starts putting pressure on the diaphragm, ribs, and muscles, it could lead to right-sided chest pain and shortness of breath.
Chest infection is one of the principal causes of chest pain. It is essentially the disease of the airways.
Stress is all-pervasive today. When you feel stressful during pregnancy, chest pain could be one of the outcomes.
6. Change in breast size:
Your breasts enlarge during pregnancy. The breast changes strain the joints and muscles of the chest wall leading to chest pain and discomfort.
The causes mentioned above result in mild pain, and you need not hit the panic button. But here are a few serious causes of chest pain during pregnancy.
7. Deep vein thrombosis:
Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) refers to a blood clot in a deeper vein, usually in the leg or pelvis. DVT is a severe medical condition that requires immediate attention.
The blood clot in the leg can travel up your body and reach the lungs. It can cause chest pain, pulmonary embolism or even death (2). You have a higher risk if you are smoking, older than 35 years, have a heart or lung illness, obese or carrying more than one fetus.