When it comes to pregnancy and sleep, it’s safe to say you’re fighting an uphill battle. During the first trimester pregnant women are faced with ridiculous hormones causing the worst fatigue they’ve felt in their entire life, and once the baby starts moving, they can forget about sleeping soundly any time soon. As bellies continue to grow, it just gets worse and worse.
If you feel like your lack of sleep is just a mean joke to prepare you for when your baby arrives, think again. There are actually plenty of ways to improve your quality of sleep naturally, keeping you and your baby healthy and happy.
It is no secret that light inhibits melatonin production, making it harder to sleep. You should create an environment that blocks out all of the light so you have the highest odds of actually sleeping (blackout curtains are worth every penny). For those multiple-times-per-night pee breaks, Babble.com suggests the use of a dim night-light to avoid having to expose yourself to full lights that may wake your body up.
You know that you have to drink a lot of water while you are pregnant, and you also know that when you do this you have to pee every five minutes (or so it feels like). To help yourself sleep for longer stretches, try to drink the majority of the water your body needs in the morning and afternoon.
As your belly grows, every body part is affected, especially your legs. Restless leg syndrome is very real during pregnancy, and so are leg cramps. If you stretch before hitting the sack, these problems may be eliminated or at least lessened.
When you are trying to get comfortable at night, it all comes down to how many pillows you have. TheMayoClinic.com suggests getting a pillow to rest underneath your stomach when lying on your side (the only way you can rest once your stomach reaches a certain diameter). Place another one between your knees, and another behind your back. If this seems like too many pillows to try to coordinate every time you switch sides, you can always get a body pillow or pregnancy pillow.
Still not comfortable? Maybe your mattress is to blame. It would be a wise investment to get a high-quality mattress that will conform to every curve of your body. If you can’t afford a new mattress, you can always look for a topper mattress for any size bed. If your significant other enjoys your firm mattress and you need a soft one, just look for a nice twin-size topper to keep you both happy.
It is true that you are eating for two, but you are also eating to keep your body happy. Heartburn is another culprit when it comes to lack of sleep. To help eliminate it, BabyCenter.com suggests that you do not eat for 2-3 hours before bed — unless you suffer from morning sickness — to give your stomach time to digest the food. You should also avoid spicy, acidic or high-fat foods if heartburn is an issue.