If you didn't know your body houses something called round ligaments, you will soon. Basically, these ligaments are attached from the sides of the pelvis to the uterus. When the uterus grows, the ligaments must stretch with it.
Round-ligament pain is common between weeks 16 and 20. It may feel like a dull ache in the lower abdomen (on one side or both), or it may feel like a sharp, shooting pain that travels down into your groin.
It is a normal, albeit sometimes annoying, part of pregnancy. Most women find relief by resting with their feet up and occasionally taking acetaminophen. Roll over carefully, and soak in a warm tub if it's really bad. This pain usually disappears by week 21.
Originally published in You & Your Baby: Pregnancy.
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