Pregnancy can wreak havoc on your sleep. From rapidly raging hormones to physical discomfort, being pregnant can make it very difficult to get the amount of sleep you need… because you are pregnant. It can feel like a frustrating double-edged sword. But you don’t need to resign yourself to feeling exhausted for the next 6 or 8 months; there will be plenty of time for that once the baby is born. Get the sleep you need by following these tips.
1. Take a Hot Shower
If sore breasts, aching joints, or other physical discomfort is keeping you up at night, try taking a hot shower before bed. The heat and the water will relax you and ease some of the physical discomfort you are feeling which can make it much easier to sleep.
2. Buy a Body Pillow
For many pregnant women, the greatest sleep struggle is trying to find a comfortable position. This is especially true for anyone who is used to sleeping on their stomach. Body pillows can make it easier to find comfortable positions and offer the kind of support your body needs.
3. Drink Often, but Early
If you find yourself getting up over and over throughout the night to use the bathroom, try limiting your fluid intake in the hours before bed. Unfortunately, this won’t always help but it may help decrease the number of times you need to get up.
4. Take Some Tylenol
Although most medications are off limits during pregnancy, Tylenol or other forms of acetaminophen are considered safe for most women. If your aches and pains are keeping you from getting the sleep you need, taking a Tylenol can do trick. Before taking any medication while pregnant, be sure to consult with your physician on what medications are safe.
5. Watch What You Eat
Another common problem that keeps pregnant women from getting a good night sleep is heartburn. If you are all too familiar with that unpleasant burning sensation in your belly, pay attention to what you are putting in your mouth in the hours before you head to bed. Skipping soft drinks and other carbonated beverages in the hours leading up to bedtime can decrease the incidence of heart burn.
6. Take Some Tums
If changing your diet doesn’t help, check with your doctor to see if you can take anti-acids like Tums to help keep heartburn from keeping you up at night.
7. Stretch Your Legs
As pregnancy progresses, some women may experience excruciating leg cramps that can be very disruptive to their sleep. There are several things that can cause these cramps which means one solution may not solve the problem. Start by taking time before bed to stretch your calve muscles for at least 30 seconds. If that doesn’t help, try to up the amount of exercise you are getting during the day. If the cramps remain a problem, talk to your doctor as the cramps could be caused by a vitamin or mineral deficiency.
There is no question that pregnancy is tough, especially when it comes to sleep. Commit to making small changes to safeguard your sleep and remember that sleep struggles during pregnancy may also help get you ready to deal with not getting enough sleep once the baby is born.
- 7 Ways Pregnancy Steals Your Sleep (valleysleepcenter.com)
- 5 Reasons Pregnant Women Don’t Get Enough Sleep (valleysleepcenter.com)
- What is the Connection Between Sleep, Pregnancy, and Blood Pressure? (valleysleepcenter.com)