Pelvic Joint (Girdle) Pain in Pregnancy

What does ‘pelvic joint pain’ mean? Pelvic joint pain refers to pain felt around the pelvis; either at the back in the buttocks on one or both sides and /or pain over the pubic bone, or pain over all three areas. There are three joints in the pelvis, and each has only a small amount of movement. Pain and problems can occur during pregnancy when normal function is affected by pregnancy hormones, or when any one or more of the three are damaged, for example, a fall or an accident, i.e. a car accident. Pain might be felt directly over the joints at the back, in the buttock, and can radiate out to the hip or the ‘sit bones’. Pain may be felt down the back of the leg. It can feel similar to sciatica but is caused by the pelvic joints. The pain may also be felt in the pelvic floor or the vagina. At the front of the pelvis, the pubic bone may become painful to touch, and there may be groin pain on one or both sides. If inflamed, a burning, aching sensation can be felt. This sort of pain needs professional expertise for ongoing management.   What causes pelvic joint pain?  Pregnancy hormones soften the strong ligaments that hold the bones of the pelvis together to allow a little more space for your baby to pass through the pelvis during birth. These hormones start to take effect about 10 days after your baby is conceived, and are quite a normal part of pregnancy. By about 18-20 weeks, due to the weight and size of the growing baby, the tummy muscles are becoming stretched and weakened. There is more weight on the pelvic floor. This process can