Sleeping while pregnant can be elusive. As tired and as uncomfortable as expecting women are, trouble sleeping during pregnancy is one of the most common complaints you hear from mothers. Between frequent bathroom trips, night sweats, excessive thinking, vivid dreams or even nightmares, and the discomfort of trying to accommodate a growing belly, it’s really no wonder! Not only are doctors are bombarded with questions about sleep, but forums all over the internet are rife with complaints of women and pleas for help. In order to help all those pregnant sleeping (or not-sleeping!) women, here are a few tips to help you catch that elusive sleep.
Get to Bed Early and Often
You must be feeling tired. After all, you’re growing a human inside! While other people are sitting around doing nothing, you’re making some lungs in there! Don’t feel like you need to keep up with your regular schedule and sleep whenever you feel tired. This means take a nap during the day if you can, even 15 minutes of rest can do wonders! Also, make sure to go to bed early in the evenings before you get overly tired. Going to bed early and around the same time every day is important in order to ensure a healthy sleep routine, whether you are pregnant or not.
Put Down the Chocolate
So, chocolate has caffeine and your body is going to be extremely sensitive to caffeine. Chocolate late in the day will mess with your schedule. So, that goes double for coffee, soda, teas and other drinks that contain high amounts of caffeine. If you must consume caffeine, make sure to do it in the early mornings and in the afternoons, opt for a healthy smoothie or cup of herbal tea.
Don’t Drink Water Late in the Day
As you know, you should be drinking a lot of water while pregnant, because your blood expands by up to 40%. You also need it to help your skin and make sure all of your organs are functioning properly. You should be drinking about 10 8-ounce cups of water all day, but you should try to get this water in earlier in the day. Try not to drink anything past 6 pm at night. The pressure of baby on your bladder and the extra water will cause you to go to the bathroom a lot more often and it can disturb your sleep at night.
Snack Before Bed
Just because you shouldn’t drink liquids before bed does not mean you should not have a snack. To ward off nausea and prevent dips in blood sugar, try eating a small, nutrient-rich snack before bedtime. Protein is great, because it will keep you fuller and you won’t wake up in the middle of the night from hunger. Yoghurt, nuts, and even oatmeal made with some milk can keep you resting for the rest of the night.
Exercise Will Help You Sleep While You’re Pregnant
Exercising is crucial during pregnancy. It can help prevent morning sickness and boost your energy. It will help you keep your energy levels up and will make labor that much easier. Even more, exercise can actually help you sleep better too! Try to exercise early in the morning though, because in the evenings it can over-stimulate you and make sleep more difficult to come by. Remember to consult your doctor before exercising while pregnant and listen to your body as you exercise! You can keep up the same levels of activity as before, but adjust according to how you feel. Walking and/or swimming are great ways to get that body moving without risk of injury if you are new to exercising.
Unplug to Help you Unwind
Onscreen programming and content is stimulating. Studies even suggest that the blue light that is emitted by screens can be very stimulating. Let your mind take a break at the end of a long day and turn off the T.V., computer, tablets, and phone screens at least an hour before going to bed.
Use a Pregnancy Pillow
Pregnancy pillows are great, because they offer extra support and comfort for a pregnant body. Full length whole body pillows in the shape of a U or a C offer support for the back, belly, knees, neck and head. If you were used to sleeping on your stomach during the first trimester, you will find that it becomes more and more impossible as your pregnancy moves along. These pregnancy pillows, however, will help you get comfortable, even while sleeping on your side or back.
Do you find that you’re snoring while pregnant? Well, elevating yourself with a pregnancy pillow will help open up your passageways and minimize the snoring. This will help not just you sleep, but it will help your partner sleep as well!
How to sleep while pregnant? Well, the answer is to sleep like a baby! Well, sleep like you wish your baby would once he arrives. Remember, sleep is crucial for keeping a healthy mind and body. Follow the tips listed above and you will be on your way to feeling much more rested throughout your day.