Shortness of Breath During Pregnancy: When to Worry

During pregnancy, your baby is causing your organs to shift, so it is common to experience shortness of breath. Learn when your breathing patterns might be cause for concern.


-Well, over half of women will get shortness of breath when they're pregnant. In the first trimester, it's really common from the hormonal changes. The increase is progesterone can make you feel shortness of breath that you've never felt before. A lot of people have a hard time even finishing a sentence without taking a big breath in because of that sensation. If you're developing that shortness of breath that seems acute as opposed to gradual onset, so out of the blue if you suddenly find yourself much more feeling shortness of breath, then that's something that would warrant medical attention, but then if it's been chronic and it's maybe getting a little bit worse, but basically as it has been, that's gonna be really common. In the second trimester and the third trimester, you can imagine as your uterus is growing, there's less room to take a deep breath in, so it can feel much more constricted and harder to take that breath in. So, that's really common. It's nothing that is acutely getting worse, suddenly getting worse, then it's probably just related to that pregnancy. In general with the shortness of breath, you need to pace yourself, you need to relax. And if you're lying down and you're feeling worse, you need to sit up and make sure that that feels better. And if none of those things are helping, there are some things that should be ruled out either by your OB/GYN or by your primary care provider.

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