Using heating pads is a common practice among people who have muscles aches. It relieves pain immediately. However, many pregnant women ask themselves “Can I use a heating pad when pregnant?”.
Even though heating pads are life savers, some believe that heat can harm the unborn baby. This is generally not true if someone uses heat and follows the precautions.
Heat is one of the most effective pain relief methods in history, especially when it involves the horrible pregnancy discomforts. If you want to know if a heating pad can be used during pregnancy, keep reading.
In this post,I will discuss the following.
- What is a heating pad used for in pregnancy?
- Applying a Heating Pad When Pregnant
- Can I use a heating pad when pregnant? Is it safe for the baby?
- Advantages of Using a Heating Pad During Pregnancy
- Can I use a heating pad on my belly when pregnant?
- Alternatives to Heating Pads: Pregnancy Safe Alternative
This post is for informational purposes only. This is not medical advice. Contact your doctor if you have any questions or concerns.
Also, this post may contain affiliate links. I earn a small commission if you purchase something.
What is a heating pad used for in pregnancy?
A heating pad is used to relieve common pregnancy discomforts. These discomforts include painful twitches, joint pain, sore muscles, tendons, and ligaments, and muscle spasms.
Heating pads are also used for these discomforts even if someone is not pregnant. Pregnancy changes your body completely and may cause extreme constant muscle aches that need some kind of method of treatment.
Applying a Heating Pad When Pregnant
Pregnancy causes pain as the baby begins to grow and expand the uterus. With the expansion of the uterus, the hip bones widen and ligaments in the hips and back may expand and hurt. This pain in the ligaments is called ligament pain and is very common in the second and third trimester.
Heating usually relieves pain in the muscles and ligaments by increasing the circulation of blood towards the painful area. The increased amount of blood helps the area heal quicker. You could apply heat by using a heating pad, an electric heating pad, a heat wrap or a heated gel pack.
Doing a heating pad would help with the discomforts of pregnancy by relieving physical pain. However, the main question is “can I use a heating pad when pregnant?”.
Can I use a heating pad when pregnant? Is it safe for the baby?
Yes, you can use a heating pad while pregnant. You might be very worried that it would harm your baby. Many women start looking up everything to make sure it has no affect on their unborn child.
Using a heating pad for a short duration is quite safe, but you need to take a few safety precautions. Heat could harm you and your baby if you use it in the wrong place or for a long period of time.
Advantages of Using a Heating Pad During Pregnancy
The main benefit of using a heating pad during pregnancy is the immediate and effective pain relief it gives for pregnant women who suffer everyday from pregnancy symptoms.
The advantages of a heating pad is the same for pregnant and non-pregnant people. But having the ability to use heat when pregnant is a major blessing.
A heating pad or any form of heat therapy can help with pregnancy discomforts caused by increased hormone levels, gravity, an increase in weight, and a horrible posture.
Increasing hormone levels can cause back pain by loosening ligaments in the hips and back. Gravity causes your entire posture to shift when your uterus grows.
Also, the weight of your baby and the weight gain you may experience from pregnancy puts a burden on your back and hips. Your posture would even make it worse.
Another benefit of heating pads is the relaxation effect is has on people. Being pregnant wears down the body, and having the option to relieve this stress by using heat is a blessing.
Using heat therapy is the best option when trying to relieve pain during pregnancy. However, heat pads can be harmful to you and your baby if you are not careful. Here are some things to keep in mind when using heat.
- Do not sleep with any form of heat therapy. It could burn you, and you would not be aware of the burn until you wake up.
- You should not apply heat pads for more than 20 minutes. 20 minutes is perfect for relieving muscle pain. Do not use heating pads for a prolonged period of time.
- Do not make the heating pad vey hot. Use the lowest heat possible. Simply, make sure the heating pad is not too hot.
- Do not apply the heat pad on your skin without keeping a barrier between them. Use a towel or a cover to keep the heat pad from directly touching you.
- Try to avoid you tummy or abdominal area. It is best not to overheat your stomach when pregnant.
- If you feel your body temperature is going up, remove the heating pad.
Your body temperature should stay normal when using a heating pad. Applying a heating pad usually does not increase your temperature, but if it does it could harm you and your baby.
Can I use a heating pad on my belly when pregnant?
If you have abdominal pain, call your doctor. Do not use a heat pad on your belly while pregnant.
That is because stomach pain during pregnancy usually means there might be something wrong or abnormal especially if it comes with other symptoms like bleeding, abnormal vaginal discharge and chills.
Alternatives to Heating Pads: Pregnancy Safe Alternatives
If you still feel uncomfortable with using heating pads while pregnant, you could use other pregnancy safe alternatives. Here are a few.
- Working Out
Exercising is effective in relieving muscle pain and joint stiffness by building muscles and making them stronger. It is safe to do some workouts while pregnant. Walking is a great safe option.
You should exercise throughout your entire pregnancy. You would definitely feel less pain and discomfort.
Did you know there are massages specifically for pregnant women? These prenatal massages target joints and pains commonly felt by pregnant women. One of the main areas targeted is the sciatic nerve since so many pregnant women complain about it.
Acupuncture is considered safe when pregnant. The specialist would place needles in specific areas of tension to help release the toxins and pains you may feel. It is considered effective.
Heating pads are generally safe during pregnancy if you do not use it on your stomach or for a long period of time. Do heating pads if you suffer from the discomforts of pregnancy. You would get immediate relief.
If you have concerns about heat therapy, I recommend contacting your doctor. if you have another symptoms beside muscle pain and common pregnancy symptoms, I also recommend you contact your doctor.