All About Lightning Crotch Pain You Need to Know During Pregnancy

What is lightning crotch pain?

Lightning crotch means sharp or shooting pain in the vagina, rectum, or pelvis region that usually occurs during pregnancy. Lightning crotch pain is mainly known as groin pain or pelvic pain, as it appears first in the pelvic and groin region.

It is a shooting pain that appears suddenly and stops later. So the lightning crotch is characterized by short-lived pain in the pelvis. It is often seen during the third trimester of pregnancy. It is a common and uncomfortable complaint of pregnant women. 

Groin pain is common during pregnancy, mainly in the third trimester, and it often becomes mild to severe as the pregnancy progresses day by day. Ligament loosens during pregnancy in the pelvis region and groin due to support for extra space needed during delivery that causes pain and vaginal issues. However, that is usually common. 

Groin pain is not an emergency case, and it does not usually depict a problem with the pregnancy. If you are near the end trimester of your pregnancy and minding your own business, you may suddenly feel a shooting pain “down there, in the pelvic region”; it is lightning crotch pain. 

The experience lasts for less than a minute before dissipating as fast as it appeared for that feature; it is called “shooting pain. ” It sounds very familiar to women who have experienced pregnancy. Someone may not have experienced it during her first pregnancy.

However, it is a rare case. Lightning crotch pain may appear like stabbing in the vagina sometimes. It feels very uncomfortable and like you are being struck by lightning. That might explain why the phenomenon is called” lightning pain,” which affects some women in their third trimester. 

Lightning crotch is a widespread phenomenon that happens in four to six weeks during pregnancy. Contrary to popular belief, the lightning crotch is not the same as round ligament pain, which occurs as the ligaments surrounding your uterus stretch to make room for the baby.

Varicose veins (swollen and enlarged veins that generally occur on the legs and feet) should not be confused with spider veins. They might be blue or dark purple in hue, and they come in various sizes. They are often lumpy, bulging, or twisted due to the extra weight. However, these diseases might arise for a variety of reasons. 

Three most common symptoms Of Lightning Crotch pain:

 Lightning crotch can vary from person to person, but most often, this pregnancy symptom is shown as :

  •  A sharp, shooting pain in the vagina or pelvic region that lasts only for a moment, mainly one or two minutes. 
  • Painful, mortifying, or pins-and-needles sensation in the same region
  • Brief but intense pelvic pain that’s stronger and shorter than menstruation cramps.

How does it feel, according to sufferers? 

 Pregnant women may complain of painful, mortifying, or pins-and-needles sensation in the lower abdomen, pelvic or vaginal region, or inner thigh. These twinges can strike at any time, but they are more likely when you have been in one position for a long time or have not moved in a while (for example, when you are sleeping or sitting on the couch). Pregnant women describe lightning crotch pain as an electric shock that occurs unexpectedly and lasts from 15 to 60 seconds. 

Lightning crotch sensations can range from barely perceptible to excruciating, causing you to double over in pain. Lightning crotch can also be felt in the groin, pelvic region, vagina, rectum, or uterus, in addition to the pelvis. 

What is the difference between lightning crotch pain and other types of pelvic pain during pregnancy?

It is quite normal having pain during pregnancy. Moreover, you may have mistaken crotch pain with other pain. During pregnancy, you will experience a lot of aches and pains and cramping, especially in the pelvic area, where so much action is happening for delivery preparation. So, overall pelvic or lower abdomen pain is normal, albeit it feels more achy and crampy than a sudden shooting sensation like lightning crotch. 

There are other pains like round ligament pain ( Round ligament pain is an intense or jabbing feeling felt in the lower abdomen or groin area on one or both sides. It is one of the most prevalent complaints during pregnancy and is thought to be a natural part of the process, despite being extremely painful.

It occurs most often during the second trimester)and is often described as a pulling sensation in your lower abdomen. Then there is an emotional pain in the pelvic and rectum area that usually radiates down to the leg.

Alternatively, pregnant women might experience painful pressure down there coming from varicose veins in the inferior extremity. These kinds of discomfort are not the same as lightning crotch because they symbolize unusual symptoms like sharp, electric pains that might be felt for a few seconds in your pelvic regions.

 3 prime causes of lightning crotch pain during pregnancy:

Doctors are unsure about the cause of lightning crotch developing in some people but not others. However, some referrals can induce crotch pain: 

  • Movement of the baby During pregnancy:a baby’s movement, such as stretching, twisting, or kicking, can cause strain on the mother’s nerves. The pelvis, vagina, groin, or rectum may experience sudden, acute discomfort. The force behind the motions becomes stronger as the baby grows, which may cause additional pain. Besides, at the last days of pregnancy, the baby comes in the proper delivery position -head near the vagina and legs in the upper position that can cause pain, too.
  •  Dropping: When the baby moves into the lower region of the uterus in preparation for delivery, this is known as dropping. It is a natural phenomenon before pregnancy. It mainly happens during the end of the third trimester of pregnancy. Doctors named it lightning. The dropping of a baby indicates that the baby is ready to be born. The baby may rotate such that the rear of its head is near the front of the belly and the head is facing down before falling. Then the baby’s head will push on the pelvic floor and bladder, putting pressure on the nerve endings. The pressure on the nerves also causes lightning crotch pain. 
  • Inflammation of the round ligament: The round ligaments are a pair of thick ligaments in the pelvis that connect the uterus’s front to the groin region and help support the uterus. Because of the stretching aspect of the round ligaments, pain in the round ligaments is typical during pregnancy. The circular ligaments grow softer, delicate, and may stretch as the pregnancy proceeds, and they become thin and achy, causing intense pain. 

Other five prime causes of scratch pain without pregnancy: 

Stabbing crotch pains in the pelvic area may also be due to: 

  1.  Due to excessive bleeding during menstruation 
  2. ovaries and fallopian tubes endometriosis
  3.  a ruptured cyst in the abdominal region 
  4.  Pain during ovulation
  5.  bladder infections like noninfectious cystitis. 

4 Actionable tips to prevent crotch pain:

Lightning crotch is not always preventable, primarily because of the baby’s position in the uterus. Fortunately, several home cures might help decrease crotch pain during pregnancy. It may take some time and investigation to figure out what works best for each individual, especially if the pain strikes suddenly.

  •  Changing positions: When the mother is feeling stabbing pain, moving may help to reduce the pain. Because the infant places pressure on a specific nerve ending, it might help to stand up or move. Changing positions will cause the baby to change and take pressure off a nerve. 
  • Taking a long, hot soak A warm bath can help with various pregnant aches and pains, including agony and body aches. Warm water may also aid in the relief of round ligament discomfort or other pains. However, remember that you should not use excess warm water for bathing cause it can be hazardous sometimes. 
  • Getting a prenatal massage is a great way to relax and unwind throughout your pregnancy. Although a pregnancy massage will not assist in reducing lightning crotch, It will assist in the relaxation of muscles and the relief of general aches and pains. However, you should seek a prenatal massage from a skilled, qualified massage therapist. 
  • An abdominal support band is worn. Abdominal or belly support garments designed specifically for pregnancy are available in many medical stores or pharmacies and can assist you by removing weight from the pelvis. They may also assist in reducing nerve strain and the sharp shooting pains associated with the lightning crotch. These belts can be worn under or over clothing, depending on personal preference. 


Is lightning crotch a sign of labor? 

Lightning pain mainly occurs in the last days of pregnancy. It may not be mistaken with labor pain. Cause labor pain is long-lasting and lasts to the end of the delivery after the rupture of the placenta. So, your best bet is patiently to wait things out. It is a sign that the baby is almost ready to deliver, and labor pain can occur anytime. 

When should you seek medical advice? 

It is quite normal in most pregnancy cases to have aches. Aside from lightning crotch, there are a variety of additional causes, such as round ligament pain, kicking of the child, or varicose veins (although these conditions generally present as aching or pulling pain instead of sharp pain like lightning crotch pain ).

So, if the pain is not moderate to severe, it is not obvious to seek help from a doctor. It is not a concerning symptom like bleeding, dizziness, fever, severe headaches, hazy vision, or leaking fluid, suggesting infection or consequence. However, if you are suffering from it more often, you should go to the doctor and discuss and get through proper medication. 


The pregnancy period is full of unusual body symptoms, aches, and smell problems. It is quite problematic. Lightning pain is another one you may have to suffer. However, some women may misinterpret intense thunderbolt agony with labor pain, especially first-time mothers, because home remedies are not always applicable, especially when suffering from severe pain.

Call your doctor if the pain feels like intense menstrual cramps, comes at regular intervals, increases in duration or intensity, or is accompanied by backache or blood-tinged discharge. Take the problems cautiously and be safe during pregnancy.

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