Pregnancy is an incredibly amazing experience for both your mind and body, but getting proper sleep when you’re expecting isn’t always a walk in the park. Pregnancy can lead to back pain, heartburn, insomnia, fatigue, and, of course, a growing belly that can make it difficult to lay down comfortably. All of these issues can add up to a very frustrating night’s sleep.
Thankfully, there are lots of potential remedies to try, which may have different results at different stages of your pregnancy. Here are a few tricks to try in order to finally get the quality sleep you deserve.
1. Sleep On Your Side
This may be tough to wrap your head around if you typically sleep on your back or stomach, but side sleeping is usually the best move for most pregnant women. Sleeping on your back while pregnant may cause back pain as well blood pressure and circulation issues. On the other hand, sleeping on your stomach while pregnant might be incredibly uncomfortable as your baby bump grows.
Ideally, you’ll want to sleep on your side, which can help to ease pressure on your back and uterus. Sleeping on your left side in particular is thought to cause an increase in the amount of nutrients flowing toward your baby. If your back hurts when you lay on your side, try placing a pillow between your legs as you lay on your side for relief. A pillow under your stomach may also help do the trick.
2. Consider Taking Melatonin
Talk your doctor or health practitioner first, but if he or she gives the okay, consider making small doses of melatonin part of your nighttime routine. This ingredient can help you manage insomnia and unwind when you’re wide awake at night.
3. Avoid Eating Or Drinking Too Late At Night
Try to avoid any snacks or beverages about two hours before going to bed. This can help you avoid heartburn, acid reflux, especially when you stay away from spicy or acidic foods. You might also want to avoid carbonated beverages, as they might cause leg cramps, which can disrupt your sleep. Of course, cutting back on evening beverages can also help reduce those late-night restroom runs that so often accompany pregnancy.
4. Get Creative With Your Pillows
Sometimes the easiest way to fight off late-night body aches is the strategic placement of pillows. If you’re feeling short of breath, use a pillow to prop up your head and upper torso by a few inches. If your spine is aching, try different sizes and firmness of pillows or add a mattress pad. (You can take this to the next level by wearing a maternity belt or belly band during the day to ease some of the pressure on your frame.) After you eat, prop yourself upright for a few hours to stave off acid reflux.
5. Maintain A Calm Atmosphere
Keeping your sleep routine zen is certainly easier said than done, especially when you’re dealing with the hectic nature of preparing your home and life for a new baby. That said, it can make a major difference in your quality of sleep.
To help make this happen, charge your electronics in a separate room from your bedroom, and avoid glowing screens for a few hours before going to sleep. Your room should be dark, quiet, and cool. It’s also important to reserve your bed solely for sleeping, sex, and relaxation. That means no catching up on work under the covers! Make relaxing a priority whenever possible by taking warm baths, enjoying prenatal yoga, or incorporating any other practice that will help you feel calm and content
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