Shopping, children and co. – how heavy can pregnant women lift and carry?

heavy lifting in pregnancy

The pregnancy test was on the bathroom shelf and I was waiting. At my side my 3 year old, meanwhile 16 kg heavy. "I want to see too" – he wanted to be lifted high. And for the first time I asked myself the question: How heavy can I lift and carry during pregnancy??

Of course I still lifted it this time, after all I was only in the 4. Week pregnant and physically still completely unimpaired. But after the test was positive, I wanted to know more precisely for the future, so that I do not lift too heavy and thus endanger myself and my baby. So I wanted the following questions answered:

  • How much kg is a pregnant woman allowed to lift?
  • If I am allowed to lift and carry other heavy objects?
  • At what point should I avoid heavy lifting during pregnancy??
  • Can I wear my toddler during pregnancy?

The results of my research surprised me a little myself.

Topics of the article

How many kilograms can a pregnant woman lift??

Heavy lifting at work

Like probably many others, I kind of thought that there was a Pregnant women should not lift more than 5 kg. In fact, there is this kilogram limit – for pregnant employees in an employment relationship. Because in Occupational health and safety law it has been established that pregnant women are not allowed to perform activities that require them to lift more than 5 kg regularly or more than 10 kg occasionally. This means that the employer must either assign the pregnant woman to other work or give her time off.

If the employer does not do this or. takes its time with the risk assessment of the workplace, any doctor can also issue an Employment ban exhibit.

Risk and consequences: Is heavy lifting harmful during pregnancy??

A medical basis for allowing pregnant women to lift only the 5 kg or. 10 kg lifting is not and has not been allowed to this day.

However, it is clear that a Overloading during pregnancy Should be avoided at all costs. Also risk for back pain or hip problems during pregnancy increases.

In normal everyday life, women can usually listen to their bodies and take into account their current state of mind when it comes to heavy lifting. This is not possible in the working world and in the worst case would even be punished as a refusal to work with a warning.

Therefore Occupational health and safety regulation for heavy lifting during pregnancy quite reasonable. But does it therefore make sense for my everyday life?

Consequences – What can happen if you lift things that are too heavy during pregnancy?

In fact, there is no research or even studies on human participants to prove whether heavy lifting during pregnancy will harm a healthy mother or her baby.

Of course, such tests would be ethically unacceptable – pregnant women would have to be lifted for so long and so heavily until damage could be proven. No doctor and especially no pregnant woman would go along with that. Of course, it is possible to carry out observational studies, which give conclusions that lifting too heavy can lead to problems.

The 5-kilo limit from the world of work seems to be transferable however in no case to the family life and the everyday life in the pregnancy.

Some women also report that they Abdominal pain after heavy lifting have perceived. Should you ever have lifted too heavy and a Pulling in the abdomen feel, please consult a doctor immediately. The same is true for bleeding and other pains that are possible consequences of lifting too heavy.

Risk of premature birth from lifting too heavy during pregnancy?

While it was once thought that heavy lifting or carrying could even trigger premature birth, most doctors now give the all-clear in this regard. There seems to be no link between occasional heavy lifting at home during pregnancy and the risk of preterm birth.

In the world of work, the situation is different – but here, German law prohibits heavy lifting when pregnant anyway. According to American observational studies, pregnant women standing for more than 2.5 hours at work or lifting more than 100 kg throughout the day increases the risk of preterm birth or low birth weight. A connection between the lifting of loads, which are heavier than 11 kg and pregnancy complications could prove the studies only very weakly. The abstract states that the "results, however, remain contradictory and inconclusive".

Shopping, suitcases and carrying babies – When should pregnant women stop lifting heavy things in everyday life??

As long as you feel fit and strong enough as a pregnant woman, you can lift and carry – even more than 5 kg. There is no prescribed kilogram limit up to which lifting during pregnancy is considered safe.

Your Load limit always depends on the physical condition and the level of training of the muscles. This means that if you are used to lifting a lot and heavy, you will be able to lift a bit more effortlessly and more than other pregnant women, even when pregnant. Of course, it always depends on whether you are still in the pregnancy or not Early pregnancy or already to the End of pregnancy located.

But still pass when bending and lifting on your back and, if in doubt, leave the heavy lifting and carrying to someone else – if that is possible.

Lifting correctly during pregnancy

So even if lifting during pregnancy is not forbidden per se, you should not carry any load without consideration.

Pay attention to your body and its signals. If it becomes too much for you, you will certainly feel it – as long as you proceed slowly and mindfully. Also make sure you lift correctly.

During pregnancy, many women are particularly prone to Back pain and hip problems. In addition, your Ligaments and tendons loosened by pregnancy hormones, You should keep this in mind.

Lifting in a way that is easy on the back also makes sense outside of pregnancy.

How pregnant women should lift and carry properly to avoid pain?

It depends on the fact that you do not lift out of the back but out of the legs. This means that when you bend down and pick something up from the floor, you should first bend your knees and then come straight back up again.

If you bend forward to pick something up, this puts a lot of strain on your back and is therefore not recommended.

When carrying heavy objects, always pay attention to this, not to make a hollow back. As soon as you do, shift the weight from your arms to your spine.

Pregnant with the 2. Child – carrying baby despite new pregnancy

Also biologically it would make little sense if pregnant women were never allowed to lift more than 5 kg. Because after the first few weeks of life, each baby already weighs more.

While it is easier to take it easy in the first pregnancy, there is little room for maneuver for many mothers in the second pregnancy, because the larger baby or toddler also has needs. Many children still want to enjoy the closeness and care of being carried, even in infancy, or are simply unable to walk for long distances.

Carrying a baby or toddler in a sling or baby carrier during pregnancy

The Carrying on the arm can be a good temporary solution. Over longer distances, however, especially mothers who are used to carrying their children in the Sling or in Comfort baby carrier carry. Fortunately, in many cases this is possible until the birth – provided you do it properly.

What do pregnant women have to consider when wearing a baby sling or baby carrier?

Because the very most important thing when you are pregnant and carrying your baby or toddler is that the The hip belt of the baby carrier or. strand of the sling not directly over the baby’s belly is put on.

Instead, it must run under or over the belly. Otherwise too much pressure will be exerted on the uterus, which in the worst case can lead to a tear. In any case, it is an unpleasant feeling in the abdomen, which you should never ignore. This is how your body tells you right away if the carrier is tied properly.

Tying a sling during pregnancy

When you tie the sling over your baby’s belly, your baby sitting in it should not press on your belly from above. This would also be uncomfortable and in the worst case dangerous. As long as you can still slide a flat hand between the baby’s bottom and belly without squeezing, your child is sitting properly.

Back carrying in pregnancy

But many mothers prefer to carry on their backs during pregnancy anyway. (You can also tie the sling on your back when you are pregnant). This not only avoids the baby pushing on the belly as described above. It is also more gentle on the back and pelvic floor muscles.

Most babies can be carried on the back when they are about 4-5 months old.

Conclusion: So am I allowed to lift anything in pregnancy?

Overall seems Carrying and lifting during pregnancy thus not nearly as dangerous as is suggested. What you are confident of and can carry without pain or strain, you may carry.

However, this does not mean that no load and no effort can harm your body. Especially with very heavy things, which you are not used to even outside of pregnancy, you should still be careful. Because even though there is no evidence in research about how heavy is too heavy, your body is in a state of emergency.

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