Let’s face it – pregnancy is uncomfortable in so many ways. And there’s no better time for discomfort during pregnancy than when you hit the hay, or try to at least. Here are the top sleep issues for pregnant women and what you can do to alleviate them.
Hormones can wreak havoc on sleep. But stress and anxiety are big contributors to insomnia while pregnant. You worry about your baby’s health, your health, if you chose the right color for the nursery – the list goes on. But the one thing you can do to combat insomnia and worry is to get serious about your sleep hygiene – exercise daily; stay away from caffeine, sugar and alcohol; keep regular sleep and wake hours; and reserve your bed for strictly sex or sleeping.
Pregnancy and heartburn seem to be best friends. But what’s actually happening? Pregnancy hormones relax the muscles in your digestive tract. Here’s the great news: there are a few things you can do to at least take the edge off pregnancy’s painful companion when it comes time to get much needed rest. Start by eating your larger meals during the day and lighter meals at night. You can also keep a food log to help track down which foods trigger indigestion so you can slowly remove them from your diet – unless it’s chocolate of course. Lucky for you, cocoa and sugar aren’t on the list. Tomato sauce, carbonated beverages, greasy or fatty foods, and spicy meals are common offenders.
Your shrinking bladder
Running to the bathroom every 10 minutes isn’t exactly the best for deep sleep. So to avoid this, there are a few things you can do a few hours before bed. Avoid beverages that have a mild diuretic effect – coffee, tea and alcohol; hydrate adequately during the day, but hold off an hour or two before bed; and make sure to empty your bladder completely each time you go.
Your growing belly puts a lot of added pressure on almost every aspect of your body. So discomfort during sleep comes with the territory. So what can you do when you hop in bed? Doctors recommend sleeping on your left side with your knees bent. This helps improve circulation between the heart, fetus, uterus and kidneys. And don’t forget the pillows – one between your knees and another below the small of your back should do the trick.
Roughly half of us may have, at some point, experienced the discomfort of childbirth. So for the sake of better sleep, follow the steps above for a better overall experience. But we have one last piece of advice we think is the most important – make sure you have a good mattress. The experts at The Mattress Hub can help. A better mattress can take your sleep during pregnancy from aches and pains to drooling on your pillow in no time.