Thanks to the surge in hormone levels, sleeping becomes yet another challenge during pregnancy. The reason for the discomfort while sleeping can be backaches, frequent need to urinate, and even bad dreams that may not let you have a peaceful and deep sleep. This not only exhausts you but also causes irritability and poor concentration.
A woman’s body goes through a lot of changes—be it physical or psychological. The body does extra work to form an entire organ altogether—the placenta, which provides nourishment to the growing baby. The blood supply increases and the heart beats faster to keep up with the increased demands of the body. The uterus and the baby grow constantly and so does the mother’s weight.
While the body does its best, the brain never lets a woman’s thoughts subside. She goes through a plethora of emotions—the excitement of having a baby and the anxiety about the safety of the baby. Of course, there is fear of labor and delivery and whether she will be a good mom.
Sleep During The First Trimester
The first trimester brings various symptoms along with it that include morning sickness, frequent urination, and fatigue. And, these won’t just accompany you in the daytime—they can strike at night as well making it difficult to sleep. Women also feel warmer due to an increase in metabolism—switching on the fan can help. As for morning sickness, women can eat light snacks before getting out of bed. To reduce late night bathroom visits, cutting down on the intake of fluids late in the evenings can decrease the frequency. However, women should drink plenty of liquids throughout the day to avoid constipation and swelling in hands and feet.
Sleep During The Second Trimester
The second trimester is when pregnancy changes occur at a lower pace and you get somewhat accustomed to them by then. Women in the second trimester are advised to sleep on their left side with their knees bent. This can prevent acid reflux and heartburn, which are a common phenomena during pregnancy Using a pregnancy pillow can prove to be comfortable in supporting your back and legs. Leg cramps may bother women, especially those who are anemic. The legs may feel jumpy, with a sensation of ants crawling up and down the legs. A little walking around can offer some relief provided you don’t loose your sleep.
Sleep During The Third Trimester
By the third semester, an over-sized belly and an active baby may cause much discomfort at night. Again, it is best to lie on your left side while asleep. However, doctors suggest that the mothers-to-be must avoid sleeping on their backs. The weight of the uterus can press down on the spine nerves and the inferior vena cave vein, which is responsible for carrying blood from the lower body to the heart. Using pillows—placing one between the knees, the second below the belly and the third behind the back for support seems fine until you change positions or turn in the bed. Now, you might know why pregnancy pillows might suit you best. Here is a guide to buying pregnancy pillows. Snoring is also common in the third trimester of pregnancy. This may be due to weight gain or nasal congestion. You can use nasal strips to open the nasal passage.
Many women experience unpleasant dreaming about their pregnancy or the baby. There is no specific reason for it but frequently waking up between sleep may make them remember their dreams. For a pregnant woman, both quality and an adequate quantity of sleep are essential. Studies have shown that sleep can affect the duration of labor and type of delivery.(https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15592289) Go to bed early and get sufficient and a fulfilling sleep. Try spending 8 hours in bed so that you can get a good sleep for at least 7 hours. It is alright to find yourself lying on your back at night. Roll over and continue sleeping on your side. If your sleep is getting disrupted, take a nap in the daytime as long as you can fall asleep easily later at night.