Many people consider being pregnant to be one of the most difficult things in life. But for those of us that have been pregnant we can honestly say that life’s biggest challenge is learning how to sleep while pregnant.
Getting a good night’s rest is difficult during pregnancy because your body is going through so many changes, as it prepares for childbirth. Being able to get sufficient rest during pregnancy is essential for having a healthy baby, but oddly the more we need to sleep, the more sleep eludes us. Studies have shown that women who don’t get enough sleep may have longer labors and a higher-risk of needing an emergency C-section.
The National Sleep Foundation studies have discovered that four out five women have had trouble sleeping during pregnancy. Before being pregnant, I would sleep like a rock all night long. But during my pregnancy I turned into a zombie, having one sleepless night after another.
Besides just feeling uncomfortable constantly, the sad reality is that morning sickness is not just in the morning but also all day long. I always had to go pee even in the middle of the night, plus everything I ate seemed to cause heartburn and my body began to hurt in places I didn’t even know existed.
I learned so much during my first pregnancy that looking back I wish I did differently, but I don’t want you or any other future mothers to suffer as I did, so here’s what I learned that may help you know how to sleep while pregnant.
How To Sleep While Pregnant – Tips for each Trimester of Your Pregnancy
Sleeping during your first trimester
The extra pressure on my bladder made me run to the bathroom to pee every five minutes. I found limiting my fluid intake a few hours before bedtime, helped me to avoid the need to wake up because I needed to use the bathroom.
Morning sickness can hit anytime during the day including at night. Having an empty stomach makes the nausea worse, so I would just keep some peanut-butter crackers to snack on during the night, so I wouldn’t feel the need to get up and go to the kitchen. Choose protein-rich snacks such as dairy products, nuts and eggs.
One of the main things that helped me sleeping while pregnant was being active during the day, the more active I was the easier, and it was to fall asleep.
I used to always sleep on my belly, but studies show that pregnant women need to sleep on their side during pregnancy. To avoid sleeping on stomach during first trimester, it is good to use a round shaped pregnancy pillow.
Sleeping during your second trimester
Morning sickness stopped but heartburn began. Since your uterus is expanding, it is beginning to push against your stomach, causing acid. To avoid having digestive problems, try to eat your bigger meals earlier in the day. I learned this late, as my husband and I would eat out late, then I’d spend all night on the couch suffering from heartburn or acid reflux.
I always thought snoring while pregnant was a myth invested by women that snored before getting pregnant, but I started snoring much to my dismay. Nasal strips were helpful to keep my nasal passages open making breathing easier.
Sleeping during the third trimester
Sleeping during the third trimester was the most challenging because of this huge 40-pound belly I had suddenly grown. No position was comfortable. Here are some of my biggest annoyances that kept me up, night after night.
My legs felt like something creepy-crawly was crawling on them at night, I would finally get to sleep and this strange and irritating sensation would wake me up. The doctor explained that this is called Restless Leg Syndrome and is very common during pregnancy. I found supporting my legs against pillows helped to avoid this.
I started propping up tons of pillows against the areas that would cause me discomfort. For example, I placed pillows under my lower back, to elevate me while sleeping to help me breath easily and to help with back pain. Another pillow by my hips, then another one between my knees, our bed was full of pillows. The only problem was they would pop out of place, and take over my husband’s part of the bed.
I had looked at buying a pregnancy pillow, but wanting to save money for the baby, I tried rolling blankets to prop up all of my uncomfortable areas, but that quickly fell flat. Finally, I broke down and got one and suddenly I was sleeping pregnant!
The truth is you will have sleepless nights, but don’t fret about it. Just try occupying yourself with something else or watch a boring documentary on Netflix and you will be out like a baby. I’m sure if you follow my simple suggestions on how to sleep while pregnant, it will prevent you from turning into a mombie (mom zombie) and have you sleeping like a baby.