Are you experiencing pain or discomfort and worried about using an ice pack on your stomach during pregnancy?
It is safe to use ice packs, frozen water bottles, or other cold relief methods on your belly during pregnancy to relieve muscle discomfort, reduce nausea, or soothe stretching skin. Some mothers report that using an ice pack on their stomach causes their baby to become more active while others have tried this method without success.
Read on to learn more about using an ice pack on your baby!
Is it okay to use an ice pack on your stomach during pregnancy?
It might seem like a silly question but many mothers ask it so don’t feel alone and your pregnancy isn’t strange!
Yes, it is okay to use an ice pack on your stomach during pregnancy as the highly vascularized uterine wall keeps baby nice and warm as long as your core body temperature is within range. Special care should be taken not to allow ice to make direct contact with skin, however, as it could lead to frostbite.
The best way to use an ice pack on your belly is to use it just like you would for a sports injury or sore muscle. According to Healthline, here is how to apply cold therapy to your skin:
- Wrap the ice pack in a towel
- Use the cold ice packs only for short periods of time, about 10-15 minutes
- You can put the ice pack on your belly several times per day, as needed
One tip is to set an alarm on your phone or a 15-minute timer once you’ve set the ice pack on your stomach so you won’t forget if you are binging a TV show or movie and lose track of time!
Can baby feel ice on your belly when pregnant?
Some women report that their babies seem to move around a lot inside their abdomen when they use an ice pack on their stomach but can they really feel it?
Babies in the first or second trimester almost certainly couldn’t feel a cold pack on your pregnant belly but as you move into the third trimester your baby will have less room inside the uterus and will be closer to the surface of your stomach so it is possible that baby will feel the temperature change from an ice pack.
If a baby feels this temperature change, she might move around more frequently, kick, or otherwise react to the sensation.
Still, there is no danger to your baby from using an ice pack as long as you are following the recommended protocols!
Can you use an ice pack on belly to turn your baby?
Some women have reported that they want to use an ice pack to get their baby to move around to a different position or turn inside their belly. While the ice can potentially do this, it isn’t wise to try and turn your baby in this way inside your tummy.
During the third trimester, care should also be taken to ensure that your baby is not breech or head up. Baby should naturally start to move head-first towards the vaginal canal and although unlikely, sudden temperature changes near the vaginal canal could cause your baby to move away and become breech.
What about using an ice pack on your ribs during pregnancy?
Pregnant women endure lots of discomforts and this can include all areas of the body, including the stomach, ribs, and especially lower back pain.
If your ribs are sore because of the weight of your baby, physical exertion, or another reason it is safe to use an ice pack on your ribs during pregnancy as long as you wrap the ice pack in a towel and limit exposure to about 15 minutes.
Hopefully you feel better and can get back to enjoying maternity!