Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Sleep Tips for a Happy Pregnancy

Sleep Tips for a Happy, Healthy Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a very exciting time in a woman's life. However, with pregnancy come the
many symptoms that can interrupt proper sleep. Women may experience fatigue during
the day and sleeplessness at night. They may also suffer from overactive bladder, general
discomfort, heartburn, restless leg syndrome and anxiety. Below are some tips for each
trimester that will help you get a more restful sleep during pregnancy.

First Trimester: During your first trimester, you may experience some difficulty
adjusting to the symptoms of pregnancy. High levels of progesterone bring on sudden
sleepiness during the day. However, it can then keep you up at night making those
daytime zzz’s very precious. Unfortunately, many women will have to get up in the night
to use the bathroom. This will usually occur the most in your first and third trimesters.
Drink plenty of fluids during the day, but try limiting your liquid intake before bedtime.
Instead of turning on the lights, keep night lights in the hallway and bathroom so that
your body can stay in sleep mode.

It’s important to establish good sleep habits in the first trimester. Begin sleeping on your
side, preferably the left side. Sleeping on your back puts more pressure on your blood
vessels leading to aches, pains, and even hemorrhoids. To sleep comfortably on your side
make sure you have plenty of pillows and a supportive, firm mattress that will keep your
spine in a neutral position. If you have a mattress over 10 years old, it’s likely that you’re
ready for an update.

Second Trimester: During your second trimester, you will likely feel less inclined to
take daytime naps, so it’s imperative to get a good night sleep. Follow a routine and
exercise regularly so that you are tired when nighttime rolls around. Keep the television
and other distractions out of the bedroom and have one hour of time to wind down before
bed. Try taking warm bath, meditation or yoga to relax your mind and body for sleep.

Third Trimester: This will be the most uncomfortable time of pregnancy, and finding
a comfortable sleeping position may prove to be difficult. Leg cramps, heartburn and
snoring are common complaints in the final trimester, but can be reduced with proper
blood flow. As you sleep on your left side, try wedging pillows between your legs for
extra support. Many women say that propping themselves up with a pillow may also
relieve pressure. Learn more about comfortable sleeping positions from the American Pregnancy Association.

Personally I just was gifted a new mattress from my dad and it has made all the difference in my comfort level. My last one was 10 years old and as mentioned above that seems to be the time to think about moving on to a new one. A body pillow too makes a huge difference. It seems weird at first sleeping with this giant blob but after the first time you won't want to go back to sleeping without one!

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