For some people, catching 40 winks is hard enough. If, like me, you’re the kind of person who lies in bed counting sheep until you get to the point where you start to wonder what’s above a trillion (a quadrillion, perhaps? Then a pentillion? Is that a word? How about sextillion, septillion, octillion, … then nonillion?). Maybe? Are these even words anymore? See, now I have to check, and that’s another five minutes that I’m not sleeping). It’s easy to do. Now throw a pregnancy into the mix and you may as well learn how not to sleep. Right? Can you lay one way all night? Do you need special cushions? Are there certain times that it’s best to sleep for your baby? You may start overthinking things and keep yourself awake Googling things like childbirth injuries and researching things like ‘Erb’s palsy definition’. So, let’s take a look at tips for sleeping during pregnancy.
Make the time
Depending on which source you consult, the recommended amount of sleep averages between seven to nine hours. Despite this advice, an estimated 40% of people don’t even get six hours of sleep per night. Unfortunately for pregnant women, around four fifths of expectant mothers report disturbed sleep. This means that introducing a buffer zone to your sleep time can help to ensure that you have time to get the right amount of sleep – remember, it’s easier to find the time to sleep in the evening than in the morning (for example, you may have to be at work, or you may have to rise to look after another child in the morning).
Tire yourself out
Regular exercise can help you to focus your mind and body, using up your energy reserves and preparing you for a good night’s sleep. Staying active will also inspire your imagination, giving you plenty of thoughts to drift off to (trying to sleep on an empty mind can cause boredom and insomnia). Try learning a new skill, or take up crossword puzzles and quizzes.
Left side sleeping
Special pregnancy pillows can help you to sleep on your left-hand side (which is especially recommended during the third trimester). This sleeping position is reported to benefit blood flow to the kidneys and uterus (and therefore to your unborn child). For best results, bend your knees and place one pillow between the legs, with pillows supporting the back and abdomen.