Pregnancy brings all sorts of changes in your life including body changes and sleep disturbances. If you were not sleeping properly before you conceived, your sleep problems are likely to get more complicated.
Here is how to get good sleep during pregnancy:
1. Move to the side
By now you probably know that you should sleep on your side since it might not be comfortable to sleep on your back or stomach. Sleeping on your side will reduce the pressure on the uterus and make breathing easier. In addition sleeping on the side is great for relieving backaches and increasing the amount of blood as well as nutrients that flow to the baby.
2. Avoid late night snacks
The baby maybe hungry and the craving maybe driving you crazy but you need to avoid consuming everything around you. Basically you should avoid food and drink within 2 hours of bedtime. If you eat or drink just before bedtime, you are likely to get heartburn or reflux. Heartburn and reflux can get quite uncomfortable and will keep you wide awake most of the night.
3. Make your bed comfortable
Ever tried to fall asleep on a bed that was uncomfortable? To fall and keep asleep, you need to be comfortable. Since the spine takes a lot of pressure during pregnancy, you can consider getting different pillows and rearranging them to elevate your body or to help relieve back pain. In addition, if you are not getting enough support from the mattress due to sore muscles or back pain, you may need to throw in a mattress pad to help you along.
4. If you cannot fall asleep, get up and do something
Turning and tossing in bed may seem like a good idea when trying to fall asleep but it does not make it easier to catch some shuteye. If you are unable to fall asleep, do not lie in bed. Get up and engage in something that makes you bored for a few minutes. You can try walking around or folding laundry .While this may sound weird, you will find that engaging in such activity will calm you down. When you feel calm and relaxed enough, go back to bed and try to fall asleep.
5. Turn down the room temperature
During pregnancy your body heat tends to increase. You are likely to feel hot most of the time. If the room feels a bit stuffy, you will have a hard time falling asleep. To find the right balance, consider experimenting with the thermostat to find the right temperature settings that are comfortable for you. A few degrees than you would normally set may be good for you if you are feeling stuffy.
6. Prop up your body
Getting a good pillow to prop your head and upper body is one of the handy tips on how to get good sleep during pregnancy .This will allow gravity to exert less pressure on your diaphragm and assist you to breathe easily. You can also strategically place pillows to support the stomach. This will help you to fall asleep.
7. Take short naps
If you can get time to take naps, go for it but keep them short. Ideally the naps should not be more than 30 minutes. If you sleep for a longer period than that, your body will get into the phase known as deep sleep. This will make it harder for you to wake up and leave you feeling groggy.
8. Turn off the lights
You should always keep your bedroom dark and quiet. If your alarm clock has bright light or any other gadgets that emit light such as computers, tablet or smartphones, ensure their screens are not facing you. You can cover them with a piece of cloth or turn them around.
Artificial light tends to disturb natural sleep and stall the production of melatonin, the sleep hormone. This can interfere with your sleep cycle and leave you feeling tired and groggy most of the day. Keep the curtains and blinds closed to shut out light from outside. If there is too much light in the morning, consider investing in some black curtains.
9. Manage your worries
Keep a pen and paper next to your bed. This will help to relieve your middle-of-the night anxieties. When you wake up with thoughts of all things you need to accomplish the next day, jot them down.
For some people writing down their thoughts make them worry even more. If this applies to you, try finishing your list of concerns, questions and things to do at least 1 hour before you retire to bed. After this try to put it out of your mind until morning.
10. Avoid external stimuli before bedtime
Avoiding stimuli before bedtime is one of the handy tips on how to get good sleep during pregnancy. Stay away from any external stimuli such as books, newspapers, computer monitors or any source of light or noise. You should also avoid from engaging in activities that will stimulate your body or mind such as workouts or deep-cleaning the house. Engaging in such activities will stimulate your juices and keep you wide awake when you should be sleeping.