Sleeping well can be extra difficult during pregnancy. You are tired faster and more often, and sleep problems can easily occur during pregnancy. Adequate rest and sleep are very important during pregnancy. Both for the mother and for the baby. In this article, I give you general information about sleep during pregnancy, the causes of sleep are discussed, and I give a lot of practical tips to sleep better during pregnancy.
Sleep need during pregnancy
Your sleep needs will probably change significantly during certain periods during pregnancy. Not so strange because pregnancy naturally requires a lot of you … feeding and growing your baby costs a lot of energy!
Mentally, but also physically, it demands its toll. Your heart works 4 to 5 times as fast to see yourself and baby from enough blood. And your kidneys need to work harder to process all the waste products. In addition, extra effort is required on your muscles that need to carry more weight!
Fatigue during pregnancy
The first trimester is usually extra tired because your child grows very hard and by all hormonal changes that take place in your body. after the first few months, fatigue usually increases slightly and you feel more energy-efficient. During the last few months fatigue is often increasing. In many future mothers, the increasing (increasing) extra weight begins to counteract the occurrence of pregnancy problems at some point.
There may sometimes be extreme fatigue. This can, of course, be caused by sleep problems and / or sleep deprivation , but can also be caused by anemia. If you have any suspicion or doubt that this may be the cause of your fatigue, contact your GP or obstetrician.
Causes sleep poorly during pregnancy
There are many reasons why sleep is difficult during pregnancy. Think of different physical causes. There are many hormonal changes taking place in your body. Especially during the first few months, the hormone increases progesterone, which can greatly disturb your sleep rhythm .Also, hormonal changes can cause nausea, for example. This can cause you to fall asleep or to wake up properly.
Other physical aches and pains can also prevent you from falling comfortably and easily. The growth of your baby and hence the increasing weight on your intestines can cause shortness of breath … especially if you are on your back.
The 3 trimester of pregnancy
During the first 3 months (1st trimester), the pressure on the bladder increases dramatically due to the growing fetus, the 2nd you will be less affected by this, but in the last 3 months this pressure is increased by the growing baby. The pressure on the bladder causes you to wake up more often because you have to go to the toilet.
And what you really can not surround, literally and figuratively, is your ever-growing belly! At one point, it becomes increasingly difficult to find a comfortable sleeping position … and then the baby is still moving farther in the last trimester, which also does not really help to fall asleep and sleep well!
Also, some women may suffer from burning stomach acid or cramps. In this case it is wise to avoid baked food, eat with a lot of herbs, and avoid high levels of acidity!
Mental causes of poor sleep
Besides the physical causes, there are of course also mental causes, which can make you sleep worse. You are busy with your next baby all day long. This may be a concern with a first child. This stress takes you to bed quickly when you go to sleep. Before you know, you’ll have to pee for half an hour before falling asleep.
Sleep quality during pregnancy
During pregnancy, you usually sleep less deeply, so the chance to wake up is also greater. In addition, it’s normal for you to dream more, probably about your little one. Of course you are already busy with your next baby all day long, which increases your chance of dreaming about your baby.
Better known as RLS or Restless Legs Syndrome, is a sleep disorder that many women suffer from during pregnancy.
Tips for restless legs
– Try to move as much as possible during the day.
– Take a hot bath in the evening.
– Massage your legs … and of course much better, massage your legs;)
– Avoid or moderate use of your caffeine .
– RLS can also be caused by a vitamin or iron deficiency so take good care of your diet.
Sleeping during pregnancy
During pregnancy it may be difficult to find a comfortable sleeping position. This problem, of course, increases as the size of your stomach increases ever more! In the first few months, you may be physically fit in every sleep condition, but it is advisable to start the right sleeping position right away from the beginning so that you get used to it. But what sleep is best during pregnancy?
Tips sleeping attitude
– Do not lie on your back . This is not only bad for your back, but also for example blood circulation and breathing. Especially in the final stage, the pressure on the intestines may then increase significantly, which is not good for digestion, blood circulation and your blood pressure.
– The first few months you may still be on the stomach , but as your stomach grows, this will become less comfortable because of the stomach in the way. And certainly in the last months, this is no longer possible. Despite the fact that you could sleep on the belly in the first few months, it is better to immediately learn the right sleep attitude … sleep on your side.
– During pregnancy, you sleep the best on your side . It also differs on what side you lie. Sleeping on the left side is the best sleep posture during pregnancy. This relieves the pressure of weight on the intestines and back, and promotes a good blood supply to the placenta. This is also the best side for optimal blood flow to the lower body. So, start learning yourself to sleep on the side, then this is really needed a lot easier!
You have already had some practical tips regarding restless legs and proper sleep attitude . Below you will find an extensive overview of sleep tips during pregnancy!
25 Tips to Sleep During Pregnancy
1. Use extra pillows. Put a pillow between your legs and / or behind your back for extra support.
2. Try to relax as much as possible before going to bed! You can do this by taking a bath, taking a walk, listening to relaxing music or reading a book.
3. Take good care of your diet . Protein-like food promoted the night’s rest. For example, take a glass of milk, a few slices of turkey, eggs etc. Avoid baked, greasy, seasoned and high acidity food.
4. If you are in trouble with peeing in bed, you could put a note pad on your bedside table. Write down your concerns immediately so you can let it go.
5. Provide a well-supporting mattress and pillow.
6. If you find it more fun you can lay a bit higher with your legs. You can easily do this by putting a pillow or blanket under your mattress at your footstool. If you prefer to lie higher with your upper body, you can also apply this trick perfectly by placing a pillow / think at the head end under the mattress. Slightly higher with your upper body promotes good breathing and also works perfectly with a cold !
7. Use sleeping materials such as your quilts, sheets, covers, pyama etc of natural materials such as cotton. Natural materials “breathe” much better than polyester / synthetic materials that can soon become brittle. Some people sleep under electric blankets, just before or over for heating.
8. Put your hands on your belly and tell about your experiences with your baby, this can help you to rest and enjoy yourself
9. Provide good ventilation and fresh air in the bedroom. Keep a window on a mug and air the room well through the day!
10. Regularly change your bed. It has been shown to sleep better in clean bedding .
11. Make sure the bedroom is soothing and tidy. Possibly you can look at the possibilities to set up your room Feng Shui . (learning of positive / negative energy streams).
12. Let the bedroom really be the bedroom only. The bedroom should only be referred to as sleeping. Do not do other activities like watching TV, reading, computer, work, etc. Okay sex is the only exception to the rule.
13. Go clean and fresh to bed.
14. Provide adequate body exercise during the day.
15. Do a breathing exercise and / or meditate before going to sleep. You can do this simply by focusing completely on your breathing. Focus on the inhalation and exhalation and try to keep everything apart.
16. Avoid heavy meals in the evening and do not eat too much before going to bed. Also do not go to bed with an empty stomach. Do not take fat nightly snacks. It’s best to take a light protein snack before going to bed.
17. Drink plenty of water during the day but moderate in the evening because you wake up because you have to pee.
18. Wear nice thick socks if you suffer from cold feet while sleeping.
19. Are you tired during the day? Then add it and have a good afternoon . Do not be petty!
20. Avoid sleep and definitely those that are not known or are safe for the baby! Many sleepers are not adequately tested here.
21. Let yourself massage well
22. Do yoga or do fitness exercises.
23. A solid evening ritual helps you to awake sleep.
24. Do not lay close to the edge of your bed if your stomach is slightly bigger. You are likely to fall out of bed by the extra weight when you turn around during sleep.
25. Oja, go to bed on time and take enough sleep!
Have you been pregnant or pregnant and have additional sleep tips that are missing in this overview? Let me know and I add them. And do you know someone who’s pregnant, send this message to her and help her sleep well during her pregnancy!