Sleep is restorative.
It helps our body and mind process the day gone, and recover for the day ahead.
This becomes even more important and useful for a young expectant mother preparing for birth and providing for two.
Unfortunately sleep can prove troublesome to many women during pregnancy, with discomfort, anxiety and hormone changes all playing a part but certain aids can help.
Importance of Sleep During Pregnancy
Sleep is incredibly important all of the time, but even more so for soon-to-be mothers as it helps:
- Battle fatigue
- Aid and regulate mood
- Regulate blood sugar levels
- Restore blood vessels (maintain healthy blood pressure)
- Prevent baby brain
All of this combines to confirm the magical, restorative powers of sleep and show how crucial it is during the pregnancy term.
It’s also important to remember that even though sleep is incredible, it comes in cycles and stages and each of us needs more or less depending on what stage of our life we’re at. It won’t be exactly the same for everyone.
What Helps You Sleep When Pregnant
So, what helps you sleep when pregnant?
Sleep is deeply personal and what works for one person, might not necessarily work for another.
That being said, there are general “best practice” rules that any of us can follow when seeking out a great nights sleep, pregnant or not!
Reducing screen time (i.e. phone, TV, laptop etc.), leading an active lifestyle during the daytime, and avoiding too much caffeine in your diet will all help aid and encourage good, quality sleep.
Obviously the type of “active lifestyle” you lead will change as your baby (and bump!) grows and beyond that, the biggest issue will most likely be positioning and general comfort.
Pregnancy is a magical process but as you progress through your term, the added weight from your baby bump will impact your sleep and potentially your usual sleeping positions. This is perfectly normal and it’s simply about experimenting with the best position for you, although sleeping on your left or right side is considered optimal if possible.
Using aids such as pregnancy pillows, and extra pillows, to provide you with extra support should also help as you try to ease the pressure created by your bump.
Other key tips to help with sleeping when pregnant include:
- Maintaining a consistent bedtime (and managing daytime naps so they don’t interfere)
- Avoiding foods which may cause heartburn/acid reflux
- Creating a cool, dark bedroom space to encourage sleep
The final issue may be stress, anxiety or excitement about your newly incoming arrival!
This is completely understandable (but probably not conducive to sleep!) so we would recommend meditation where possible. This can be done completely alone, or via the use of popular apps, YouTube videos, podcasts and more.
Whatever encourages you into the most relaxed and calm state possible.