Shortness of Breath in 32 Weeks Pregnancy

At this week, you are in the 8th month. You are only few weeks away from the expected delivery date. Rapid changes are occurring at this stage in both baby and the mother.

In this week you may experience different symptoms like varicose veins, leg cramps, heartburn, contractions, nausea, difficulty in sleeping and so on.

Besides these symptoms, a symptom called as shortness of breath in 32 weeks pregnancy is experienced mostly.

Shortness of Breath in 32 Weeks Pregnancy

Shortness of breath

You may get winded simply as the uterus expands below the diaphragm that is the muscle which is just below the lungs. This may improve when your baby settles down deeper into the pelvis earlier to the delivery.

Uterus expansion

As the pregnancy advances, the uterus expands and causes changes in the organs positions. With this uterus expansion, there will be an increase in the pressure on your diaphragm. As the diaphragm cannot fully retract and extend, shallow breathing develops.

This results in the breathlessness which you may feel it as uncomfortable. But fortunately, it will not affect your baby who gets the oxygen through placenta. You may significantly feel less shortness of breath in the final stage of your pregnancy, when the baby moves down into the pelvis.

Diaphragm

Diaphragm is a flat, broad muscle which is present under the lungs. By the uterus expansion it is pushed up away from its normal place. Diaphragm rises nearly one and a half inches from its normal position. This seems like a very small amount, but it is enough to decrease the capacity of the lung. In the same time, the progesterone hormone acts on the brain’s respiratory center, which causes you to take deep breath.

How to ease shortness of breath?

  • Stand as straight as possible. Try to sit and stand by keeping your back straight.
  • Proper posture provides your lungs with some space to breathe. It aids you to breathe much better, after and during your pregnancy.
  • When you are sleeping, lying on your side may help you in decreasing the pressure on the diaphragm.

If all these measures did not work out, don’t be worried. This shortness of breath will diminish in the final few weeks of your pregnancy, when your baby moves down into the pelvis and takes off the pressure on the diaphragm.

If there is a severe breathlessness

Mild breathlessness is a common symptom during pregnancy, but if it turns into more severe, it could be an indication of serious problem like blood clot in the lung. If there is a severe breathlessness along with the chest pain, rapid breathing or rapid pulse, feeling uncomfortable when taking a deep breath, then call your general practitioner immediately.

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