Periods are one thing, but getting pregnant is an entirely new level. Cramps can happen to women, and boy, do they hurt a lot! However, when you are just getting pregnant, there is a kind of cramps that are different from the ones you get on your period. Implantation cramps occur when the egg you’ve just merged with a sperm attaches itself to your uterus lining, that is, to set itself for the developmental stages of your pregnancy.
So how exactly does implantation cramping feel like? Well for starters, implantation cramps aren’t as scary as you think. They are, in fact, not always experienced by all women who get pregnant as a first symptom or sign. They are more like mild cramps that aren’t very intense as the ones that feel like you’re being punched in your uterus (the ones that you experience in your periods).
These cramps usually happen and are felt in the lower part of a woman’s abdomen and sometimes on their back, much like menstrual cramps, but it’s not that harsh compared to that. However, it can still vary depending on a woman’s health condition, as all women can have different circumstances of pregnancy (and having periods).
In some cases, women don’t really feel any cramps at all, if they are lucky. However, for women who feel very intense cramping for their first weeks of pregnancy, they should talk about it to their doctor or OB just to be sure. This is also the case with unusual menstrual cramps, after all.
Related post: 15 Causes of Cramps But No Period
Implantation vs. Menstrual Cramps
Okay, here’s the deal with period cramps and implantation ones – they may feel similar in terms of pain but they work differently deep inside. Here’s how they are different:
Implantation cramps are caused by the attachment of the fertilized egg to the uterus lining. This clearly means that they only happen when the woman gets pregnant. In addition to that, implantation cramps aren’t always felt by many women, and if they ever do, they’re not too painful. These kinds of prenatal cramps can usually only happen from 1 to 3 days, so they’re not too long. This short period is when the fertilized egg implants itself.
Menstrual cramps, or period cramps, on the other hand, will happen more often because they involve the uterus actions. The lining of the uterus gets expelled and the whole thing contracts so it feels like someone is squeezing your gut.
Period cramps can also last very long, about 3 days or more if they get worse and it’s usually not a very pleasant experience for most women! Menstrual cramps are felt by almost every woman who is on their period – and they may hurt more than your last breakup!
Whether it’s due to implantation or menstruation, cramps can also be caused by progesterone, which is released during your menstrual cycle. Your digestive system can possibly slow down with the existence of progesterone, which can also possibly lead to cramping.
How to Ease Implantation Cramping
With that said, it can be a little bit uncomfortable if you’re on your first week of pregnancy and you do experience some pain due to the implantation cramping. If you notice that the pain isn’t going away anytime soon, you may need to do something to give you some form of relief. Here are pregnancy-friendly tips on how to relieve those bad cramps:
If you have too much stress on your daily schedule, it will put some more pain on your body, and cause your cramps to ache harder! You should try to take off some load in your current work routine or daily activities, since you are going through a baby-carrying journey, after all. De-stressing yourself doesn’t only mean physical stress, but also emotional stress, so we hope you have some opportunity to take things a little slower with your daily life for the meantime.
2. Drink fluids
Lots of water can help you get away from dehydration. When your body is running out of fluids, you will have more tendency to have muscle pain, which can have an effect on how painful your cramps could be. Therefore, drinking water or fluids regularly when you’re on your first week of pregnancy can help ease the bad cramps. Just make sure that your drinks are safe for you and your baby.
3. Go through a relaxing massage
You can either ask your partner to massage you to help you relax or get the job done through a professional who knows prenatal massages. If you can’t find a hobby to relax you, this is a good activity for you and your partner (and your baby-to-be!). Massaging stimulates better blood flow and fluids all over your body so that you’re less likely to have those aches from cramps.
4. Hot compress/bath
A hot compress can help you to ease the pain from your cramps, which can also be a remedy to menstrual cramps, after all. Keeping yourself warm is a good way to relieve stress, tension, and pain, which is also why a warm bath or a steam bath can help with cramps of any kind.
In the long run, implantation cramping is not as bad as it seems, although this can still vary depending on your health circumstances, as not all women are the same in terms of periods and pregnancy. However, if your implantation cramps do get worse, the best way to deal with is to consult your physician and ask them on how to ease the pain (and if it’s still normal), as implantation cramping can also be accompanied by slight bleeding sometimes.
By all means, when you do get cramps on the first week that you finally confirm that your pregnancy is positive, it is a pretty good sign. It’s nothing too much to worry about if you don’t get too many cramps on your period. Besides, we’ve faced even worse pain than that through those awful period cramps, so implantation cramping is surely not going to be too tough to handle.