Pregnancy belts: how to choose and use them?

Ceinture de grossesse : comment la choisir et l’utiliser ?

Is the pregnancy belt themust-have accessory for pregnant women? Yes... and no! It all depends on the woman and the cause of the pain. It provides extra support for the back and stomach, and relieves pain caused by the baby's weight. But it's not suitable for every pregnancy! So how do you choose? When to wear it? Elia explains it all!

What is a pregnancy belt?

Before we go any further into the hows and whys of pregnancy belts, let's go back to basics! Also known as a lumbar belt or support belt, it is used during maternity (both during pregnancy and after childbirth) to relieve pain.

Sensations of physical discomfort are commonplace during pregnancyThis adds to the array of minor discomforts caused by baby's development (nausea, insomnia, etc.). Tensions may appear, especially in the back, as the distension of the abdominal muscles caused by the growing uterus no longer enables them to play their role of balancing and supporting the spine.

But be careful not to confuse this with a pregnancy band! While a pregnancy belt canimprove posture and relieve pain, a pregnancy band is worn for aesthetic purposes only, to show off the mum-to-be's round belly!

Why use a pregnancy belt?

A pregnancy belt can be useful for pregnant women prone to lower back pain. Fortunately, this isn't the case for everyone: some women with stronger muscles, or who have gained little weight, won't necessarily need the extra support.

Pregnant women who were not very muscular to begin with (in the back and abdominal muscles), or who have gained a lot of weight during pregnancy (twins, overweight, etc.), are likely to be concerned by back pain and tension, in which case it can be a real plus, whether to support the belly, alleviate accumulated fatigue in the back, or avoid contractures!

It can also help relieve other pregnancy symptomssuch as circulation problems, ligament pain, urinary incontinence or a feeling of heaviness.

When can a pregnancy support belt be worn?

You can wear it as soon as you feel the need - there's no particular rule! Some women experience pain as early as the first trimester of pregnancy, while others only feel the need in the weeks leading up to delivery. The only thing to remember is that the pregnancy belt must not be worn continuously, 24 hours a day. It's best to take a thirty-minute break at least every three hours.

For active pregnant women

Women who remain active and are regularly on their feet during the day should opt for a more flexible, seamless belt. They are more discreet than other models, and go unnoticed under clothing.

During maternity

Pregnancy belts during maternity are useful in cases of pain, as explained above. Its purpose is to support the belly, prevent excessive pelvic mobility and correct posture. The reason? During pregnancy, relaxin (a hormone released by the body during this period) relaxes tendons, ligaments and muscles, resulting in de facto tension. The pregnancy belt helps compensate for this.

After childbirth

In theory, the pregnancy belt is not necessary after childbirth, except in the rare case of a vertical incision. If, however, you feel the need for additional support, a pregnancy belt can be worn post-partum.

It's important to note, however, that after childbirth, it's important to regain a toned stomach to protect your back! So priority should be given to gradual physical re-education.

How do I choose the right pregnancy support belt?

Not all pregnancy belts are created equal, and price isn't everything! There are several types of pregnancy belts, including lumbar belts and evolutionary pregnancy belts. The right pregnancy belt will depend on each woman's needs, whether she's looking for tummy support, pelvic support or lumbar support.

As for the sleep belt, it's a model that provides adapted support for the night.

The essential pre-requisite: measure your hip circumference at the abdomen, so as to choose a model that corresponds to your size. Evolutionary pregnancy belts have the advantage of being worn throughout pregnancy, as they adapt to the size of your belly as baby develops.

Another factor to consider: the seams or fastenings ! These can be unpleasant and uncomfortable, so avoid them! Last but not least, don't choose a pregnancy belt that hugs the whole belly or exerts pressure, as this can cause contractions.

If in doubt, ask your doctor, gynecologist or midwife for advice.

Is the pregnancy belt reimbursed by Social Security?

Pregnancy belts may be partially reimbursed by Social Security when prescribed by a doctor. Some mutual insurance companies cover the remainder, but you'll need to check your contract.

Pregnancy belt FAQ

When should I start wearing a pregnancy belt?

Pregnancy belts can be worn as soon as the need arises, whether to relieve tension in the back, provide extra comfort or support the weight of the belly. Some women use it only at night, others during the day, at the beginning, middle or end of pregnancy!

Is it compulsory for a pregnant woman to wear a pregnancy belt?

A pregnancy belt is by no means compulsory. Only your doctor or gynecologist will be able to confirm the need to wear one. However, for added comfort, there's nothing to stop you from buying one!

Where can I buy a pregnancy support belt?

Pregnancy belts are available at various prices on a number of websites (and delivery is a real plus at this time of year!), as well as in certain pharmacies. It's best to try them on first, to make sure you're making the right choice. Don't forget to ask your doctor for advice, as he or she will be able to advise you on the best products available.

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The information contained in the articles on is general information only. Although reviewed by health professionals, this information is not error-free, does not constitute health advice or consultation, and is not intended to provide a diagnosis or suggest a course of treatment. Under no circumstances may this information be used as a substitute for medical advice or consultation with a healthcare professional. If you have any questions, please consult your doctor.