PSP: Pubic Symphysis Pain During Pregnancy

Pregnancy is such an exhilarating time in life, but it doesn’t mean that it is always comfortable and pain free along the way.

Sometimes aches and pains start to form, making simple activities so much harder. Below are some tips to help you cope and manage these pains.

What Is Pubic Symphysis Pain

Pubic Symphysis Pain (PSP) is common during pregnancy.

It starts when the ligaments and structures that support your pelvis get too relaxed before childbirth and when more movement occurs in the joints surrounding your hips.

This then can cause pain and discomfort during daily activities.

What Are The Sypmtoms of PSP

  • Mild to severe pain over the pubic symphysis
  • Pain can extend down the groin and inner thighs (one or both sides)
  • Pain can be felt at the sacroiliac joints (just above your bottom), glutes or thighs
  • Pain in pelvic area when standing
  • Discomfort or pain with prolonged sitting
  • Pain with movements like standing up, walking, rolling over in bed, or going up or down stairs
  • Clicking in the joint


5 Tips For PSP

1. Activate Your Pelvic Floor Muscles

You may have heard this phrase been thrown around, however correct and pain free activation is very important during and after pregnancy.

It is important as they help strengthen the small muscles that help stabilise your pelvis.

It’s tricky to do this correctly so if you would like some verbal assistance please talk to your physio or read more here.

2. Sleeping Positions 

Give sleeping on your side with a pillow in-between your legs a go. Also, when getting into and rolling over in bed try to keep your legs together.

3. Modify Movements

Try changing positions that you know make your pain worse.

For example, if you get pelvic pain when getting into the car, try sitting with your bottom first and then swing your legs around.

Avoid positions where your legs are separated really wide.

 4. Supportive Pregnancy Clothing

Help decrease pain and stabilise your core with supportive brace/tube/ tights/shorts when doing daily activities.

At Phyx. we love SRC pants that can help with pain relief and support during and post pregnancy.

Note you will need to be measured up for these pants. Please ring the practice to organise this. We can also provide a note to your health insurer so you are to claim a portion of the cost (for participating health insurers).

5. Gentle Exercise

Decrease the amount of high impact exercise if you have PSP.

Try something different like walking, pilates, yoga and swimming.

At Phyx. we are passionate about helping people get out of pain and use pilates as a safe tool to help get stronger.

Stretches You Can Do At Home


Gluteal Stretch

  • Sitting in a chair bring one ankle to the opposite knee, and gradually push your knee down to the floor with your hand.
  • Hold for 30 seconds x 3 repeats 
  • Stop if you experience any pain

Mermaid Stretch

  • Try to keep your hips down as you stretch your arm over
  • Repeat 3x to each side, making sure to switch your legs around  
  • Stop if you experience any pain

Physiotherapist are excellent at helping guide you throughout your pregnancy journey and are here to provide advice, pain relief and exercises during this exciting time.

If you have any questions or experiencing similar pain, please don’t be afraid to get in touch. 

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