A tight stomach during pregnancy is a complaint that often appears in almost every trimester of pregnancy. On the one hand, this can be a sign that the fetus is growing well. However, on the other hand, a tight stomach during pregnancy can be a symptom of pregnancy disorders that need to be watched out for.
Belly tight during pregnancy can occur due to hormonal changes or can also be influenced by fetal development. This condition is common during pregnancy, but that doesn't mean it can be taken lightly.
Therefore, it is important for every pregnant woman to know the various causes of a tight stomach during pregnancy.
Causes of a tight stomach during pregnancy in the first trimester
The following are some of the causes of a tight stomach in the first trimester of pregnancy:
Belly tight during pregnancy can occur in the early trimester or at 12-16 weeks of gestation. In this trimester, the uterus will enlarge to about the size of a grapefruit.
If you are carrying twins, your uterus will stretch faster in the early first trimester. The stretching of the uterus is also marked by pain in the lower abdomen. This is one of the common causes of a tight stomach during pregnancy in the first trimester.
However, if your stomach is tight during pregnancy accompanied by bloody discharge or severe abdominal pain, immediately consult a doctor so that an examination and proper treatment can be carried out.
Changes in hormone levels during pregnancy can slow digestion and relax the muscles in the colon. As a result, pregnant women can experience digestive disorders, such as bloating and constipation. This is what causes a tight stomach during pregnancy.
To prevent digestive disorders during pregnancy, pregnant women are advised to fulfill their daily water intake and eat fiber-rich foods.
In certain conditions, a tight stomach during pregnancy can also be caused by an ectopic pregnancy. Symptoms that accompany an ectopic pregnancy are bleeding, dizziness, and shoulder pain. Call your doctor immediately if pregnant women experience symptoms of an ectopic pregnancy.
Causes of a Tight Stomach During Pregnancy in the Second Trimester
In the second trimester, a tight stomach during pregnancy can be caused by other things, such as:
Round ligament pain
Several types of ligaments surround and support the uterus during pregnancy. One of which is round ligament which connects the front of the uterus with the groin area. Entering the second trimester, the fetus and uterus will grow larger, resulting in stretching round ligament.
This is what causes a tight stomach during pregnancy in the second trimester. Complaints from stretching round ligament may radiate to the lower abdomen. However, this is very normal in pregnancy so pregnant women need not worry.
Urinary tract infection
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) can also cause a tight stomach during pregnancy in the second trimester. In addition to a tight stomach, symptoms that accompany a UTI are frequent urination, pain when urinating, and fever. If pregnant women experience these symptoms, immediately consult a doctor.
Causes of a tight stomach during pregnancy in the third trimester
A tight belly during pregnancy in the third trimester can be a sign of contractions. There are two types of contractions in the third trimester, namely:
Braxton Hicks or false contractions usually appear in the second or third trimester of pregnancy. This happens because of the contraction and relaxation of the uterine muscles.
A tight stomach during pregnancy which is a symptom of false contractions is the body's way of preparing for the upcoming labor process. The frequency of occurrence of false contractions is irregular and unpredictable.
In addition, false contractions do not cause cervical dilation or expansion as a sign that labor has arrived.
A tight tummy can be a sign of genuine contractions if it's close to your due date.
In contrast to false contractions, the original contractions will persist even if the pregnant woman changes positions or rests and the timing of their appearance becomes more regular. Stomach tightness due to contractions will come with regular breaks and last between 30–90 seconds.
Pregnant women will experience increased abdominal tension that radiates from the back. In addition, pregnant women will bleed, rupture of membranes, and a sensation of pressure in the pelvis or lower abdomen.
A tight stomach during pregnancy can be mild or a sign of a condition that requires prompt and appropriate medical attention. For mild tight stomach complaints, pregnant women can change positions, for example, if pregnant women are sitting, try lying down or taking a leisurely walk.
Pregnant women can also soak in warm water, meet fluid needs, and practice yoga or Kegel exercises. However, if these various methods are not effective in relieving the complaint of a tight stomach, immediately consult a doctor so that appropriate treatment can be carried out.