How Maternity Compression Can Help During Pregnancy and Postpartum : Oh, baby baby! You can definitely feel your growing bundle of joy starting to push it during your pregnancy. As baby expands and stretches in the womb, your body does a lot of adjusting to handle the extra weight and pressure placed on your core. You’ll start to feel it in your hips, lower back, pelvis and more.
Plus, baby will cause your body to stretch even more giving birth and it takes about six weeks to physically recover. To remain active both pre- and post-delivery, you may benefit from maternity compression.
What is Maternity Compression?
Maternity compression is an umbrella term used to describe maternity support garments – such as compression stockings – maternity support bands and postpartum recovery garments. They are designed to provide pain relief and support to help you remain active and recover during long days.
Whether you need a little extra assistance to make it through workouts, have to be on your feet for work, are travelling or healing postpartum, the right maternity compression garment can make a major difference.
Maternity Compression Pregnancy Benefits
One thing that’s common with pregnancy is swelling. You hear about swollen feet, ankles and more. This is because as your body prepares to support the growing life inside your belly, it produces more blood and the uterus grows, placing more pressure on the vena cava, the vein responsible for transferring blood to the heart. This, combined with gravity, can make it more difficult for your legs to pump blood. As a result, the uterus may pull and collect, causing swelling or edema, all of which can be painful.
Your doctor may recommend wearing compression socks or stockings to alleviate swelling on your legs. Standing for too long and sitting for too long are also factors that affect pregnancy edema, so proper rest is tremendously important in reducing swelling.
Compression socks are designed to mimic the natural ability that the muscles in your lower legs have to pump blood to the rest of your body. They are tighter at the toes and loosen further up your leg to relieve swelling and poor circulation. By keeping your blood circulating, they may be able to reduce the risk for deep vein thrombosis (blood clots), relieve cramps, itching, fatigue, varicose veins and more.
There are a variety of compression socks based on your needs that go up to the knee, thigh and belly. Compression socks may help you get through a long day of walking, keep blood circulating while on a plane or during long meetings and give you the strength to maintain your exercise routine.
Maternity Support Bands
To make room for your growing baby and prepare for birth, your organs shift, your pelvic ligaments and joints loosen, and your uterus grows. During the third trimester, your back and core start to really feel the weight of your growing belly. This can place more pressure on your Sacroiliac Joint (SIJ), which is responsible for stability. It may also become painful or more difficult to move around. However, maternity support bands – or belly bands – are designed to support your core where it’s needed most to provide stability and relieve pain. They are made out of soft, breathable fabric to comfortably support your lower back and expanding stomach.
If you’re having a painful pregnancy, you don’t have to be couch-bound. Your maternity band may give you the core support needed to relieve ligament pain and help you maintain simple workouts such as yoga, sit at your desk or move about the office comfortably. They may also relieve hip pressure and help you keep your posture to avoid having a pregnancy waddle and may prevent you from overextending your lower back while standing or sitting.
Postpartum Maternity Compression Benefits
Childbirth truly is a miracle, as your body changes to bring new life into this world. With vaginal deliveries and C-sections, the body stretches, ligaments might tear, and swelling and bleeding occur. All of those may be painful and exhausting while recuperating when all you want to do is care for your newborn, but postpartum recovery garments may be able to help.
Postpartum Recovery Garments
Postpartum recovery garments are similar to maternity belts, as they are supportive devices made out of soft, breathable fabrics. However, they cover more area by going from the pelvis all the way up to your chest. They are designed to fully support the areas of your body affected most by giving birth to help your glutes, pelvis, abs and back. As a result, they may relieve sore muscles and your lower back pain to help you get back on your feet feeding your baby, cleaning milk containers and everything else your care routine involves.
Postpartum compression garments may promote healing to get you back to normal faster by reducing pressure on your uterus or C-section incision. Many designs also include zippers so you don’t have to pull the garment over the incision. Recovery garments can also help you feel like yourself again by reducing bloating, helping the organs and abdomen return to their normal places, and by reducing uterine bleeding.
Which Compression Garment Is Best?
It’s best to connect with your doctor to determine which maternity compression garment is best suited for you during your pregnancy and postpartum recovery. Also, keep in mind that you may qualify to receive maternity compression garments through insurance! Support your body by qualifying now!
Jennifer Jordan is the Director of Mom & Baby at Aeroflow Healthcare, a durable medical equipment provider that has provided breast pumps through insurance to hundreds of thousands of women. A working and once-breastfeeding mom, Jennifer — along with her team — is committed to supporting all moms on their breastfeeding journey through support, education, and exceptional customer service.
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