Are you struggling for breath after taking a trip upstairs? Do you feel like you are waddling when walking? Do you look down and your feet are nowhere in sight?
Welcome to pregnancy!
or your third trimester, if we're being more specific.
Why Am I Struggling for Breath?
As you and your baby are growing, your body is making changes. The one thing your body can't help is your baby pushing against your vital organs during the pregnancy. As your baby grows, they will begin to have less space to move around in and begin to take up a lot of your space. And for that very reason you will begin to feel out of breath and struggle to carry out the simple tasks you once were a professional at.
As your baby is growing, your uterus may begin to push on your diaphragm which with leave you with that out of breath feeling you may be experiencing. Your diaphragm actually moves around 4 cm upwards from your pre-pregnancy position. If you diaphragm is being pressed on enough, this will then begin to compress your lungs meaning your lung capacity just isn't the same.
It is important to realise that just because your lung capacity is not the same as before pregnancy, you're not getting less oxygen. Your brain, even with baby brain, is very smart and knows just how to react to these changes during pregnancy. Your brain then tells you to begin taking slower breaths, so even though with each breath you may bring in less air, this is no problem for your brain. Your brain then allows the air to stay in the lungs for a longer period of time allowing you and your baby to extract the required amount of oxygen.
You should always get checked out by your healthcare professional when you notice a change. As breathlessness can also be a symptom of anaemia, it is always better to be safe than sorry. So, the expression "this baby is taking it out of me", they really are taking the breath from you.
How Can I Stop Feeling out of Breath?
We have a few ways to help with the breathlessness during pregnancy. Not all of these may work for you, but anything is worth a try.
You must remember to try and sit with your shoulders back and try not to slump in your chair. The same applies for you're standing, shoulders back and head up high.
✋ Know your body, know when to stop
You know your body and your body will know when you should stop or when you should take a break. Your body has new limits, and you should listen to those.
🏃♀️ Breathe in... and out
Adding light exercise or aerobic exercises into your daily routine can really help you practice your breathing and lowers your pulse, all whilst making you feel healthier and happier. Introducing prenatal yoga into your routine can really help give you more space to breath and can also help improve your posture.
💆 Don't Panic
Although it is easier said than done. Whilst you're feeling out of breath, try to stay calm and remember that your body is reacting this was for a reason. And a precious one at that.