Pregnancy isn't easy. Your body goes through many changes carrying another life inside you but watching your belly grows day by day, knowing that your little one is growing steadily, is indescribably rewarding.
Come your third trimester (or end of second trimester for some) and you start to feel all sorts of sores and pain over your body, especially your back. That is not a good feeling, and it will only get worse as your pregnancy advances.
If you're not one of those who has a pain-free pregnancy (and there's only a handful of these lucky peeps!) throughout, don't worry, there's a form of relief that comes in these simple looking but oh-so-effective belts - the maternity belt or belly support band. They work so well to relieve your pain, we think it should be a critical part of your maternity wardrobe!
1. What Is A Maternity Belt
As your baby grows in size and weight, so does your belly. While some women are able to handle the extra weight well, others need help in the form of external support. Maternity belt is a pregnancy belt for back pain as it is designed to support your bump and ease your pain and discomfort.
There are basically two types of maternity belts - single strap belt and prenatal cradle (with extra strap for wider range of support). Both work to provide support by lifting your belly and relieve the strain off your back and pelvis.
2. Maternity Belt vs. Belly Band
While many use the term maternity belt and belly band interchangeably, there is actually a difference between the two. They do look almost the same (especially with the simple single strap belt), but a maternity support belt works primarily to relieve discomfort and pain. Belly bands, on the other hand, come in the form of a stretchy fabric that is to be worn over the top of jeans, skirts and pants. They help to extend the wear of your normal clothes that otherwise do not fit.
Do not mistake these two with postpartum belly band. Yes we know, they all sound the same and it can get confusing, but postpartum waist band is to be worn after you have delivered, not during your pregnancy. It promotes faster recovery of your body and helps you get back in shape quicker using compression and binding forces - you do not want these on your belly while you are still pregnant! If you want to know more, click here to find out which is the best postpartum belly band.
3. Top 5 Best Pregnancy Belly Support
Our pregnancy support belt reviews below cater for different needs so take your time and don't feel rushed. It is important that you feel comfortable with the belly belt you choose as it will be the best maternity support belt that solves your problems effectively.
4. Benefits of Maternity Support Belt
- Manage your discomfort - Maternity belts provide adequate support to match the level of muscle strain and discomfort you feel as your belly expands.
- Alleviate back, hip & pelvic pain - Maternity belt gives adequate support to take the strain off these areas.
- Relief from sciatica, Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD) or Pelvic Girdle Pain (PGP) - these are common symptoms of pregnancy, though not every woman will have it.
- Twin or multiple pregnancy - you will need the extra support of maternity belts to distribute the weight across your body.
- Save money - belly bands that extend the wear of your pre-pregnancy clothes help you save money from buying maternity clothes that you will not wear again after a few months.
Despite all these benefits, do note that maternity belts are not intended to alleviate underlying medical issues. If you have any such conditions, you should consult your doctor.
5. What To Look For In The Best Maternity Band
Know what you are looking for. Support only areas that need supporting and it will lead you to find the best pregnancy support band. Ask yourself these questions:
- Do you have back pain that you need some form of relief?
- Will you be running in one?
- No back pain (lucky you!), but just want something to cover your belly?
This is very important to make sure that you feel comfortable in your maternity belt. Too loose and it will not give you the support; too tight and it makes you uncomfortable, worse, potentially posing risks to you or your baby.
Even if you get the world's best maternity support band, it is useless if your fit is wrong. Refer to the size guide provided by the brand itself (they usually come with one) or contact customer service if you're not sure which size to get - they usually provide detailed instruction to help you choose the best fit.
3. Good Quality
You may need to wear your pregnancy belt everyday if you experience discomfort or pain constantly so it is very important that the belt is comfortable. Look for one that is made from good materials i.e. breathable and stretchy, as well as durable that will last multiple washes and wear. Don't worry, all pregnancy belts recommended in our maternity belt reviews above have top notch quality that will last you a long time.
Some mothers wear their pregnancy belts even after giving birth and while there's nothing wrong with it (in fact, belly bands like this one helps you ease back to your pre-pregnancy clothes), if you expect it to give you the same effect as postpartum belly wraps (no, they are not the same!) then you're in for a big disappointment.
Without going too much in detail, in short, pregnancy belts do not cover as much as postpartum girdles, and they are too stretchy to give you the compression required for both postnatal recovery and getting back in shape faster. We have a full post with more details on this, including a review of the best belly band after pregnancy that you should have.
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