Many women struggle with sleep at some level during pregnancy. For some women, it could be a severe case of insomnia where they are spending sleepless nights, whereas for others it could be getting less sleep than usual.
Problems with sleep can occur at any time during pregnancy. While some women start struggling right from the first trimester, other women struggle only during the last trimester. Whatever be the case, it is important for you to get more sleep for your own well-being.
Read on to know more.
What causes sleep issues during pregnancy?
Here are some reasons why pregnant women cannot sleep well enough during the night.
- Aches and pains such as body ache, back pain, pain in the legs, etc.
- Increased size of the abdomen during advanced pregnancy and the movement of the baby.
- Needing to go to the bathroom often during the night.
- Hormonal changes during pregnancy.
- Anxiety and stress related to childbirth.
- Vivid dreams or nightmares that jolt you awake from sleep.
- Restless leg syndrome (an uncontrollable urge to move your legs while resting).
All these are common problems that many women face during pregnancy. If you, too, are going through this, know that you are not alone.
Tips to sleep better during pregnancy
A woman goes through a lot of physical changes during pregnancy. All these changes sometimes take a toll on the quality of sleep. A good night’s sleep is necessary for overall health and well-being. Lack of sleep can keep you feeling exhausted during the day.
Follow these tips to improve the quality of your sleep.
1. Find a comfortable position to sleep.
As the baby bump grows, it might get difficult to find a position that feels comfortable. It is recommended that you don’t sleep on your back during pregnancy. Usually, women find it more comfortable to sleep on the side with the legs slightly bent at the knees. You can place a pillow or a cushion under your baby bump and between the legs to get more support. A sleep pillow especially made for pregnant women can also help.
2. Try to make a few changes to your diet.
Try to avoid spicy or fatty foods if they cause acidity and heartburn. Also, it can help to cut down on sugary and carbonated drinks. Eat small, nutritious meals throughout the day at regular intervals. If you can, don’t eat immediately before bedtime. Many women also benefit from cutting down on their coffee consumption.
3. Wear comfortable clothes when you go to bed.
What you wear can significantly impact the comfort you feel at bedtime. Opt for comfortable maternity sleepwear. A maternity sleep bra, soft maternity panties, and maternity nightdress can significantly reduce the discomfort you feel. These clothes are made from soft and breathable fabrics, designed to help you sleep better.
4. Get into a comfortable bedtime routine.
Do what suits you to wind down at the end of the day. A warm bath, soaking your feet in warm water, a gentle massage, etc. can help. You can also try to stay away from all electronic gadgets - TV, smartphones, laptops - before bed to help yourself ease into sleep. Try to go to bed at the same time each night to establish a routine.
What to do if you are still sleepless at night?
Tried everything but still sleepless? Don’t worry, it happens sometimes. If you cannot fall asleep even after 30 minutes of trying, get up and do some non-stimulating activities. You can try yoga or meditation for calming down.
If you are losing sleep, avoid over-the-counter medication for sleep without a doctor’s approval. If you are feeling exhausted on account of lack of sleep, do visit your doctor and get help.
Staying healthy during pregnancy is very important and getting good sleep is one of the major factors in this. If you are having difficulty sleeping at night, do try and take naps during the day. Rest as often as you can, be happy, and enjoy your pregnancy. ;)
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