First of all, hearty congratulations!!! You are blessed to be on this wonderful journey called "Motherhood" and do not miss an opportunity if your loved ones want to pamper you! Also not to miss are the grandmother-ly advice on what to eat, what to wear, where to go, what not to…by not just grandmother, but friends and every possible person who knows you are pregnant. Along with all this hullaballoo, there is a concern on how should you be sleeping & the Best Sleeping Position During Pregnancy.
Do not sleep on your back
Trouble if you are a back or stomach sleeperIf you are a back sleeper or stomach sleeper it may be a bit difficult to change position of sleeping which may give sleepless nights. During the first trimester you may notice that you need more sleep than usual. This is because the fetus is just developing, the placenta is just it’s course to nurture the foetus, your body is making more blood and heart is pumping faster. However it is advisable that you adapt to trying to sleep on your side or the SOS (sleep on side) position. The most comfortable position is by lying on your side with your knees bent. You may start preferring this position as your pregnancy progresses. This position keeps the baby’s weight from applying pressure to the large vein or the vena cava.
Hence, it's best to "Sleep On Your Left During Pregnancy". Read Why.
Sleeping on the left sideNot only the doctors but your friends may also advise you to sleep on your left side. Since the liver is on the right side of the abdomen lying on the left side helps keep the uterus off the liver. It also improves circulation to the heart and also helps in blood flow to the fetus, uterus and kidneys. Don’t worry about shifting positions during your sleep in the night. Invariably even if you do try to sleep on your back you may wake up mid-night with cramps in your back.
Pillow PowerMany pregnant ladies find comfort in keeping a pillow by their side, between their legs or below their legs. Assess what works best for you. The market is also flooded with lots of pillows for pregnant ladies where you can easily snuggle inside and sleep comfortably. However, it is advisable to always consult your gynecologist when in doubt.
Tips To Sleep Comfortably During Pregnancy
- Pregnancy differs according to body type, age and health issues. What works for one woman may not necessarily work for the other. But keeping in mind that sleep is also equally important for growth and health of the fetus, don’t try to take short cuts for getting that peaceful sleep. During this phase, even herbal remedies are a big “NO” unless recommended by an expert!
- Avoid drinking coffee, caffeinated drinks, tea or soda as much as possible. If possible cut down to one or twice a day, if you cannot avoid it completely.
- Don’t go to sleep with a full stomach. You will only feel bloated. Instead have proper breakfast or lunch which has proper amount of nutrients and a light dinner. Always keep a few crackers by the bed if you feel nauseated or feel hungry in the middle of the night.
- Stick to your routine or timing of going to bed and waking up. Best Sleeping Position During Pregnancy
- In case you get leg cramps during the night, stretch your calf muscles before going to bed. Make sure you are getting enough calcium and magnesium to avoid leg cramps. Avoid taking over the counter supplements without consulting your gynecologist.
- Try enrolling for a yoga class or some other relaxation techniques to help you get relaxed and a good sleep as well.
- To help ease your fears and anxiety, get enrolled in a childbirth class or a parenting class. The company of other pregnant woman may calm you down and help you feel comfortable.
- Don’t worry yourself off to sleep or try hard to sleep. If sleep doesn’t get to you, try to do something like reading a book, listening to music, watching TV or doing some activity which you enjoy obviously without much stress.
- Try taking short naps if possible for about 30 minutes or 60 minutes during the day to help you and your baby to get accustomed to your routine. This way both of you will be able to rest.
- Avoid eating spicy food as it can cause heartburn and digestive problems which may then create problems in getting proper sleep or can also cause uneasiness.
Megha Patni is from Indore and is a mother to two adorable tykes. Apart from writing about parenting, Megha also writes stories for children and makes homemade chocolates. Currently she is also working on her first book.