With pregnancy comes exhaustion, a constant need to pee, cravings for random food, mood swings, and a bulky belly. Sometimes, you may even experience pregnancy pain. One thing you may not be expecting, however, are cramps. Cramps are a common contraction of muscles many women experience during their menstrual cycle in their lower abdomen. It’s also a symptom commonly associated with miscarriages in the first trimester of pregnancy.
Do you have 19 weeks pregnant cramping? That’s probably not something you’d thought you’d be feeling, especially in the second trimester. Of course, you may immediately worry that the cramping is a symptom of a second-trimester miscarriage, but actually cramping at around 19 weeks can be completely common.
The 19 weeks pregnancy cramps can be quite uncomfortable, though. Since you weren’t expecting to have this pregnancy symptom, here are some explanations as to why you’re cramping and what you can do to relieve some of the pain and discomfort.
Why are you cramping?
As your baby develops, your body goes through a number of gradual changes, causing you to feel pain, start to swell, and get hit with cramps as the little peanut inside you develops. The main cause of cramping around the 19-week mark is the stretching of muscles and ligaments in the uterus. This is the time your uterus begins to expand more and more.
While that feeling of tugging on both sides of your lower abdomen can be uncomfortable, it also means that your child is developing and growing. The main ligament of the uterus is the round ligament, and it’s typically the cause of any painful cramping. As this round ligament stretches, it can create either an aching pain or a sharp, tight pain on your sides. The pain can happen every once in a while, but not consistently. If the cramping you’re feeling is constant and consistent, you should immediately consult with your doctor.
Other common causes of 19 weeks pregnancy cramping
In addition to the stretching of the round ligament in the uterus, cramping in pregnancy around the 19-week mark can have other causes, including:
- Being bloated
- Excess gas
- Extra blood flow to the uterus
- Braxton Hicks contractions, which happen around 20 weeks and are very short, contraction-like pains
What are some ways to reduce or get rid of cramping?
Depending on the cause of your cramps, there can be a number of ways to reduce the discomfort or get rid of it for the time being. Whether you have severe gas pain, post-sex cramping, or a stretching ligament in your uterus, you can be on your way to a more enjoyable and comfortable pregnancy with these simple tips.
Some recommended ways to reduce or remove cramping include:
- Gas medicine can quickly and easily reduce cramping caused from being bloated or constipated. Before taking any gas-reducing over-the-counter medicine, make sure you speak to your doctor first.
- Changing up the position that you’re sitting or lying in can be an effective way to ease cramping. It will take the pressure off of the painful area and hopefully relieve the discomfort.
- A warm bath can relieve cramping and help you relax while you’re at it.
- Drinking more water may help get rid of those annoying pains since dehydration can often by a cause for cramping. Ensure you are drinking enough water each day. The Institute of Medicine recommends pregnant women drink at least 10 eight-ounce glasses of water every day.
- Try not to move too suddenly or abruptly. Doing so can cause cramping as the ligaments in your uterus stretch with sudden movement. By changing positions slowly, you’ll give the ligaments more time to catch up, which will reduce the chances of hurting yourself.
- Put a warm rag or hot water bottle on the places that hurt. Just like when you have period cramps or leg cramps, a warm compress will be a welcome relief.
When are cramps concerning?
While most pregnancy cramps should not be a cause for concern, it is important to see your doctor whenever you feel a mix of certain symptoms. If you experience any of these symptoms on top of cramping, something more serious may be happening. Go see your doctor right away.
Some of these serious symptoms include:
- Intense pain in the lower abdominal region that lasts for an extended period of time
- Spotting that comes with painful cramping
- Fever or chills
- Sudden severe headache, swelling, and vision changes
- Painful urination and cramping
- Intense cramping that does not go away
- Heavy bleeding accompanied by intense cramps
These symptoms belong to a variety of conditions and issues that may arise during pregnancy. They are oftentimes accompanied by cramping, so it is important not to dismiss a cramp when coupled with other symptoms. Although most cramps are not harmful or life-threatening, it is important to be aware of your body at all times. If you have any concerns at all regarding the 19 weeks pregnancy cramping, call your doctor.
Some causes of cramping that require immediate medical attention
In addition to the serious symptoms listed above, the following serious complications may involve cramping as well and should be evaluated by your doctor.
- Urinary tract infection (UTI)
- Placental abruption
- Ectopic pregnancy
When to call your doctor
If you experience any sudden or unusual changes during pregnancy, your best bet is to see your doctor just to be safe. They’ll get you set up with the answers and solutions to address any issues or relieve any pain. Always trust your gut and get checked out if you feel like you should. It’s always best to err on the side of caution during a pregnancy.
Regular cramps during pregnancy are just another uncomfortable change many expectant mothers endure. Also, 19 weeks pregnancy cramping is an important and healthy part of your baby’s development. These half-way-there cramps are one more thing a pregnant mother gets to experience before they meet their precious baby. Have a warm compress handy, get those feet up in a comfortable position, and tell yourself the cramps will be worth it once you are holding that little bundle of gorgeousness. Whenever you feel as if something isn’t right, your 19-week cramps are accompanied by other symptoms, or simply feel better talking to your doctor, call your obstetrician.
- What is implantation bleeding like? Facts you should know about when and why this happens
- How much does the tooth fairy pay? The answer may shock you
- Everything you wish you didn’t need to know about head lice (but do)
- What is implantation cramping like? Find out if what you’re feeling is early pregnancy symptoms
- What are the signs of implantation?