Falling During Pregnancy- Impacts & Precautions

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When pregnant, every motion and movement can be a cause for a pregnant mommy to worry. This is because we believe that the fetus and our bodies are much weaker than they actually are. For your baby to be harmed by a fall it would first need to hurt you significantly, a small slip or a bump against something doesn’t harm your child in the slightest.

Misconceptions About Falling While Pregnant

Falling can always seem scarier than it is. Here are some misconceptions about what a fall can do to you while pregnant.

  • Every fall can harm your baby’s mental development – Your baby having a mental or learning disability can have numerous causes. No significant research points to a direct link between falling when pregnant and the development of any mental or emotional disabilities These conditions have a higher chance of being hereditary.
  • Any fall can kill a baby – Similar to the development of your child; if the impact of the fall is minor, it won’t hurt your baby. Even with major falls, it takes an immense amount of trauma to cause a fatality.
  • Falling during pregnancy hinders natural delivery – Unless the trauma caused by the fall is extremely severe or has been intense enough to impact the baby’s position or physical structure doctors won’t recommend a C-Section.
  • You need to worry only if you fall on your tummy – Regardless of the position of your fall, the most significant factor you need to be on the lookout for, is the impact strength of the fall. Falling on your tummy increases the risk of danger to the baby but falling on your head or even falling on your buttocks while pregnant can impact the baby just as easily if the impact is strong enough.
  • Note: It is essential to monitor your body after a fall as you’re the best judge of your own body. If something feels unnatural, please contact your closest hospital immediately. Some falls can seem minor but are in fact extremely serious.

Reasons for Falling Down in Pregnancy

There are numerous reasons you may experience a fall when you’re pregnant. Some of these are:

Shift in the Centre of Gravity

A shift in your centre of gravity is one of the leading causes for a fall when pregnant due to the sudden imbalance created in your muscles due to the rapid weight gain during the second and third trimesters. Pre-natal yoga and other exercises can help prepare your muscles for this shift in gravity. Talk to your doctor about what exercises are safe for you and which types of exercise can help you avoid a fall due to this reason.

Pregnant Woman

Pregnancy Hormones

Pregnancy causes hormonal imbalances. Some of these hormones relax your joints and ligaments which act as a form of support to the cervix during the pregnancy period. These joints stretch and relax allowing the body to redistribute the weight around the pelvic region so your baby’s growth isn’t hindered and your joints don’t get damaged. This can cause the joints to relax too much and can lead to a fall.

Inflammation

One of the most common side-effects of pregnancy, inflammation is considered a leading cause of falls during the second and third trimester. Pregnancy hormones can cause swelling throughout your body particularly of your feet. This can cause pain and a loss of balance leading to a collapse.

Imbalanced Body Weight

When pregnant, your body gains weight in rapidly, most of which is centred around the belly. This creates an imbalance in your body posture and weight distribution and can lead to a fall. The imbalance in body weight strains certain muscles more than others which is why the overworked muscles tend to have a lot more fatigue and can crumble due to the lack of support.

Low Blood Pressure And Sugar

A common condition when pregnant, fluctuations in blood sugar and blood pressure due to the weakened immune system and imbalance in hormones can cause severe dizziness and falls.

Can Slipping Harm Your Baby?

The movement of the foetus is extremely well protected by numerous different layers that act by constricting movement while also cushioning your child against any moderate impact of a fall. Slipping isn’t considered dangerous unless the fall has the following signs of danger:

  • The fall results in bleeding in any portion near the abdominal or vaginal region
  • The fall results in excruciating pain
  • The fall leads to a leak in amniotic fluid
  • Foetal movements drop after the fall

If these signs are present immediately after a slip, please contact your primary care physician immediately.

Testing for Injury Due to Falling

In case you have suffered a significant fall that has indications of trauma, doctors may ask you to complete the following tests:

Treating fall-injury during pregnancy

  • An X-ray to check for broken bones
  • An ultrasound to monitor the heartbeat of your child and check their position
  • Blood tests to verify both the mother’s and baby’s health
  • A routine urine sample to ensure pregnancy health

In some cases, you may be asked to spend the night at the hospital for observation as symptoms that are delayed may manifest later.

Impacts of Falling During Pregnancy

Here are a few factors to keep in mind when evaluating your fall’s severity and its possible repercussions.

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