Leg Cramps During Pregnancy

Leg cramps during pregnancy are common and normal but can certainly be uncomfortable. Leg muscle cramps usually start occurring during the second and third trimester of pregnancy. Knowing what to do when a cramp appears, and how to prevent more from occurring, can make your pregnancy more comfortable. We’ll take you through some methods that can help relieve or decrease painful and annoying cramps.

Why do cramps happen during pregnancy?

These cramps are a sudden and involuntary contraction of one or more of your leg muscles. This generally occurs in the calf muscles or feet, and often happen during the night. Not only are they uncomfortable, but it can also be hard to know what to do.

Nobody really knows why cramps occur during pregnancy, but some suggested reasons include changes to metabolism, being too active or not active enough, carrying extra weight and having a vitamin deficiency.

Treat pregnancy leg cramps

If you experience any cramps in the leg muscles, try taking these steps to relieve your condition:

  1. Stretch your leg out in front of you and press your heel down. Gently pull your toes towards your shins.
  2. After this, apply a warm heat pack to the area or massage the cramped muscle to help relax it.
  3. Try walking around for a couple of minutes to relieve the cramping.

Reduce your chances of experiencing cramps during pregnancy by doing the following:

  • Relax your muscles by taking a warm bath before bed
  • Stay hydrated
  • Make sure you don’t keep your legs crossed for a long period of time
  • Keep physically active
  • Stretch your calf muscles daily, especially before bed

Are you experiencing leg cramps during your pregnancy? If you have any symptoms or concerns, please see a women’s health physiotherapist at Sports Focus. Click here to book online today or call our Northbridge rooms on 9958 8986.