16 Weeks Pregnant Belly Hard On One Side? What Happens?

16 weeks pregnant belly hard on one side is a common concern among mother-to-be ones.

While some discomfort is acceptable throughout pregnancy, that the pregnant belly feels tight and heavy may be alarming.

Understanding the crux of the matter and when to seek medical advice can send a pregnant mother peace of mind and promote a healthy pregnancy.

Read on to get what you are looking for.

Is 16 Weeks Pregnant Belly Hard On One Side common?

16 Weeks Pregnant Belly Hard On One Side

Yes. It is common to feel a hard stomach during pregnancy third trimester and week 16 – the second trimester – and even the whole time you are pregnant.

So is it normal to have a lopsided belly during pregnancy? If you also look for the answer, it is also a yes.

According to the American Pregnancy Association, about 20% of mothers experience false labor pains, which cause the belly to feel hard in the first trimester, or even 35 weeks pregnant belly hard all day.

However, there is a possibility of a hidden issue. If the hard belly symptoms accompany bleeding, discomfort, or severe pain, it indicates a serious problem.

Reasons and Solutions For Belly Feel Hard Or Tight During Pregnancy?

why does my stomach feel tight on the right side during pregnancy

So, why does my stomach feel tight on the right side during pregnancy? Here, we share with you all the reasons behind each phrase of your pregnancy.

First Trimester


From the 1st day you are pregnant to the 13th week, it is unlikely that your stomach will be hard on one side. But when it occurs, the big reason is because of constipation & bloating.

As your uterus grows and the pregnancy hormone changes, the hard belly situations will be seen more clearly.

Besides, if a hard belly comes with vaginal bleeding, it might be one of the miscarriage symptoms.


In the first trimester, expectant mothers should eat frequent meals. You should focus on 3 main meals and 1 or 2 snacks.

Don’t eat too much in each meal as it may cause stomach overloading. Some notes on eating habits that you want to look at closer include:

Choose a high-fiber diet.

Add vegetables, fruits & whole grains to your meal. These types of food smooth out the digestive system.

– Say no to fried foods or high-fat level food.

It is not easy to digest and leads to bloating. Always ask: is the food healthy?

Even if it is cereal, you should turn to malt o meal, etc., to be sure that all the food you consume is good for you and your little one.

– Always have about 64 – 96 ounces of water to stay hydrated.

Enough water will produce softened stools; in the end, it will help to prevent constipation.

– Do pregnancy exercises.

Besides, low-impact pregnancy exercise will promote bowel movements and eliminate constipation & bloating.

If there is any sign of miscarriage, you should come to the hospital immediately.

Second Trimester (16 weeks pregnancy)


From week 14 – week 27, fetal movement, Braxton Hicks contractions, and pregnancy cramps (Round ligament pain) are the reasons for the hard belly.


To prevent this discomfort, pregnant women need to:

Do pregnancy stretching exercises

Some activities like stretching or swimming or walking, or yoga can tone your muscles and reduce the cramping symptoms.

Still, whenever you try something new, let’s share with your doctor your intention to get the best advice.

Not all physical exercises are good for expectant mothers. Different people will have different exercise regimens.

– Frequently change positions.

Don’t stay put in one position unless it is a doctor’s prescription. You should be more active. Changing many positions will help you reduce cramps.

– Drink enough water.

Keeping your body hydrated will maintain good blood flow. Consequently, you don’t create pressure on your muscle, so the hard belly status disappears. 8 to 10 bottles of water every day is encouraged.

– Start a balanced diet

A healthy diet with various vegetables, fruits, and lean protein keeps bloating & constipation at bay. Avoid processed foods. From that, you will sidestep a tight stomach.

– Sleep well

We can’t stress the quality of sleep enough during pregnancy. Enough sleep will help the mother-to-be prevent contractions & cramping.

– Be happy

Anxiety & stress take a great toll on pregnant women. It increases the chance you get Braxton Hicks contractions.

Therefore, keeping a good mood, meditating, and getting some massage will help you stay happy and relaxed.

Third Trimester


If you feel a constant hard stomach 39 weeks pregnant or any time in the third trimester of pregnancy, it is more likely that contractions (Braxton Hicks, labor contractions), uterus stretches, and baby growth are to blame.


– Drink enough water.

Stay hydrated because, at this time, dehydration can lead to serious constipation, and you will feel super uncomfortable as the belly gets harder.

Enough amount of water will keep the blood flow stable. Besides, it excludes toxins from your body too.

– Stay away from unhealthy fats and high-sugar food.

It ensures you have a balanced diet and prevents bloating and constipation too.

– Pay attention to your sleep.

You can use a pillow to raise your high back, making sleeping easier.

– Exercise.

In addition, you need to follow some prenatal yoga to maintain a good posture and alleviate discomfort. From that, the unpleasant symptoms will be eliminated, and your mood will be improved.

If there is anything related to labor time, you should contact your doctor and visit him right away.

When Should You See A Doctor?

constant hard stomach 39 weeks pregnant

A hardened belly or stomach will not be ominous if it does not come along with abnormal symptoms, such as:

– You also experience intense pain in the baby bump.

– You find all the signs indicating the baby is coming out.

– You have a fever.

– There is bleeding in your vaginal.

– You feel your baby not moving or not as active.

– You feel dizzy or fainting.

– You have difficulty breathing.

– Your heartbeat is rapidly changing.

Whenever you sense something makes you concerned, don’t let it go. Directly ask your doctor for their words.


Does Your Lower Stomach Get Hard In Early Pregnancy?

Yes. Your lower stomach may get hard in early pregnancy. Abdominal muscle stretching and constipation cause this. In a detailed manner:

Abdominal muscles stretching

When the uterus and baby develop, pregnant women will gradually feel their belly firmer even in the first weeks – around weeks 7 & 8.

The abdominal muscles overstretch, making your lower abdomen appear harder than when you are not with a baby.


Hormonal changes equals a lower intestinal flow. As a result, gas production increases, so the belly becomes hard and bloated.

Some expectant mothers drink iron supplements, which contributes to harder stool. So overall, the lower stomach gets hard.

Is It Normal To Only Feel Your Baby On One Side Of Your Stomach?

Yes. It is normal. Your baby usually stays on one side to sleep. If there is any cozy space, they love to sleep there for a long time, whether on the right or left. Don’t worry about it.

Final Thoughts

Although 16 weeks pregnant belly hard on one side is common, it is important to know whether it is normal as different people have different causes.

Understanding the roots of the problem and when you should ask for a doctor is key to a healthy pregnancy journey.

A healthy pregnancy will start by observing your daily health and communicating well with your doctor, so don’t be shy.

Ask them for anything you are concerned about. A doctor’s word will make you more reassured.

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