Every pregnant person has heard it before, “Sleep while you can, because you won’t be able to once the baby is born!” Unfortunately, this well-intentioned advice is often impossible to heed, as pregnancy sleep-disturbances affect more than half of all women in recent surveys. Different factors impact sleep in each trimester of pregnancy; physical chances like nausea, heartburn and an ever-growing belly, not to mention the excitement and anxiety over this new chapter in your life, may keep you tossing and turning at night. Here are a few tips for achieving better sleep during each stage of pregnancy:
First Trimester- While you may not be showing yet, big changes begin happening internally during the first trimester, which can impact your sleep. Rising progesterone levels may leave you feeling sapped of energy and tired all the time, yet feelings of discomfort may leave you restless. Nausea sometimes referred to as “morning sickness” (although, let’s face it, it comes when it comes) is one of the biggest hurdles of first-trimester pregnancy. For many, smells can trigger nausea, while other aromas can help soothe it. Filling your bedroom with relaxing scents can abate nausea and help you drift off. Keep your room as cool, dark and quiet as possible to create optimal conditions for rest.
Second Trimester- At this point, your body is beginning to change and grow, and with that comes some adjustments to your sleeping position. The American Pregnancy Association recommends sleeping on your side during pregnancy, as it promotes better circulation for you and your baby. Sleeping on your left side in particular keeps pressure off the liver, which is in your right abdomen. If you’re used to sleeping on your back or stomach, this can take some getting used to. Busy Mommy’s 140cm body pillow helps make the transition to side sleeping easier.
Third Trimester- Finding a comfortable sleep position becomes increasingly tough in the third trimester, but a body pillow can provide support at this phase as well. As you continue to sleep on your left side, you may also want to keep your head elevated to prevent acid reflux, which is common as your expanding uterus begins to press against your stomach. Hip pain, which is common during the third trimester, can also be eased by placing a pillow between your legs to achieve better alignment of the hips and spine.