Maternity Support Garment
Today's moms-to-be are proactive in leading healthy lifestyles during their pregnancies. Maternity supports for pregnant moms are becoming routine items in a pregnancy wardrobe as an increasing number of doctors, nurses and health care professionals are now consistently recommending abdominal and back supports during pregnancy for many women.
The routine use of maternity supports is on the rise because of the need to remain active during pregnancy. Today, more than ever there is an increasing awareness of healthy lifestyles and a desire to remain physically fit during pregnancy. There is a need to remain active due to the high number of dual income families as well as women who are the "bread winners" in their home. In many cases, there are already children in the home who require physically attentive and caring parents and keep mom on her feet.
A wide selection of maternity back and abdominal supports are available in several styles. They are designed to support the back and tummy as well as different parts of the body to further the health of the mother and baby during pregnancy. Some health care professionals say that women who use these supports may even be preventing some complications from happening.
Backache is the most common complaint during pregnancy. It is most often caused by a strain put on the back muscles by the growing uterus pulling downward and forward. Moms pregnant with twins experience the same changes but twice as fast. Abdominal and back supports give these tired tummy and back muscles the lift and support they need to minimize straining and hurting.
Women are wearing maternity supports during their exercise program to help support the already stretching muscles. Exercise during pregnancy is recommended by doctors to help their patients look and feel better, help their posture, and lessen discomforts like backaches and fatigue. The goal of exercise during pregnancy should be to reach or keep a level of fitness that is safe. Pregnant mothers should not exercise to lose weight during pregnancy and every woman should ask her doctor for some general guidelines for a safe and healthy exercise program geared to her special needs during pregnancy.
After one full term pregnancy, tummy muscles are stretched and they often are not as supportive for the next pregnancy. If you have ever taken a newly purchased small balloon and put it to your mouth to blow it up, you probably felt a certain amount of resistance on the part of the balloon as it expands. If you tried to blow up the same balloon the second time, you probably found there was much less resistance on the part of the balloon to fill up. The uterus and tummy muscles react much in the same way. For each time the same woman becomes pregnant, there is a greater tendency for those muscles to expand earlier on in the pregnancy and the need to support those sagging muscles happens earlier on as well.
The weight of the uterus bearing down on the pelvic bones can sometimes cause a painful separation between the bones that can feel excruciating. Supports that lift uterine weight from the pelvic cradle do wonders while keeping baby from bouncing on those painful joints. One customer remarked, "I had painful ligaments - making it hard to walk or be comfortable. I think the [pregnancy support] was a factor in making the pain end. In any case it stopped hurting a week after I began wearing it...,"
Different Types Available
Simple belts give support to the lower tummy with pull to the lower back. These are usually economical in price and give support for any mom who needs support.
There are also panty type supports with an elasticized band sewn in.
Some supports are available that have a large back portion and come around the hips to support the lower abdomen.
Full torso supports are also available that lift the weight from the pelvic cradle. A full torso abdominal and back support may have an open abdomen which promotes the baby's comfort, allows for air circulation and permits frequent skin moisturizing.
Changes in pregnancy often requires the use of good supportive bras. A woman may need more than one size to accommodate her changes during pregnancy.
Compression stockings and other compression devices are standard for many women who experience "popped out veins" and are often used to prevent the veins from becoming large.
Velcro-type closures or hooks and eyes are sometimes added for adjustment purposes. Hooks and eyes tend work well and do not snag on expensive clothing or stockings.
It is increasingly evident that abdominal and back supports play an important role in maintaining the comfort and health of pregnant moms today. Many women come into stores asking for them. Stores not currently carrying them should consider a low cost, simple support to satisfy their customers and keep them coming back. The evidence is overwhelming that maternity supports are here to stay and for many women make a world of difference in their comfort during pregnancy.
By Christine Seering, President of Prenatal Cradle, Inc.