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Community Questions - Sleep in Pregnancy

"Can you share some tips for helping with sleep during pregnancy? I'm struggling to stay asleep!"

Of course! We've all been there and it's so frustrating especially when you're exhausted but still seem to be awake numerous times during the night. Here are some tips that we found helpful. Remember to speak to your midwife/GP if you are struggling with sleep consistently as they will be able to provide guidance specifically for you.

Sleep disturbances are common during pregnancy. Hormonal changes, physical discomfort, and anxieties about the upcoming arrival of a baby can all contribute to a disturbance in sleep. Some tips that helped us included:

Creating a Comfortable Sleeping Environment

One of the first steps to getting a good night's rest during pregnancy is to create a comfortable sleeping environment. Use pillows to support your growing belly, back, and legs. Consider using a pregnancy pillow or a body pillow to alleviate discomfort and provide extra support.

Establish a Bedtime Routine

Establishing a consistent bedtime routine can signal to your body that it's time to wind down and prepare for sleep. Engage in relaxing activities before bed, such as taking a warm bath, reading a book, or practicing gentle prenatal yoga or meditation. Avoid stimulating activities or screens, as the blue light emitted by electronic devices can interfere with your sleep.

Manage Your Fluid Intake

During pregnancy, it's important to stay hydrated, but it's equally important to manage your fluid intake close to bedtime to minimise disruptions from frequent trips to the bathroom. Drink plenty of fluids earlier in the day and gradually reduce your intake as the evening approaches. Empty your bladder before going to bed to minimize the need to wake up during the night.

Practice Good Sleep Hygiene

Good sleep hygiene is essential for anyone looking to improve their sleep quality, and this holds true for pregnant women as well. Establish a regular sleep schedule by going to bed and waking up at the same time every day. Make your bedroom a sleep-friendly environment by keeping it cool, dark, and quiet.

Find Comfortable Sleep Positions

As your pregnancy progresses, finding a comfortable sleep position can become a challenge. Sleeping on your side, particularly the left side, is generally recommended during pregnancy as it improves blood flow to the baby and reduces the risk of complications. Experiment with different pillows and cushions to find a position that provides optimal comfort and support.

Seek Relief for Discomfort

Pregnancy can bring about various discomforts that can interfere with your ability to sleep. If you're experiencing back pain, consider using a pregnancy pillow to alleviate pressure and provide support. If heartburn is keeping you up at night, try elevating your upper body with extra pillows or consult your midwife for safe and effective remedies.

Manage Stress and Anxiety

Pregnancy can bring about a range of emotions, including stress and anxiety. These feelings can make it difficult to relax and fall asleep. Practice stress management techniques such as deep breathing exercises, progressive muscle relaxation, or journaling to help calm your mind before bed.

It's important to prioritise your sleep during pregnancy for the well-being of both you and your baby. These are some tips that worked for us, remember, if sleep disturbances persist or worsen, consult with your midwife for further guidance and support.

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