As you begin your 9-month journey, it’s important to understand the importance of sleep during pregnancy. According to the National Sleep Foundation’s 1998 Women and Sleep poll, 78% of women report more disturbed sleep during pregnancy than at other times. With each trimester comes new challenges that you will face, and taking note of your sleep habits could result in an easier pregnancy over all. It is recommended that every adult get an average of seven to nine hours of sleep each night. In terms of sleep during pregnancy, rest when you feel tired to make up for any disturbances that might occur during your overnight sleep.
Sleep During the First Trimester of Pregnancy
It’s an exciting time. You just found out that you’re pregnant. You’re going to be seeing a lot of changes in yourself, emotionally and physically. You will adjust to these changes throughout each trimester.
Some changes include:
- Frequent urination
- Nausea or morning sickness
How can you help fight these changes? Schedule a naptime, drink fewer fluids closer to bedtime, incorporate bland snacks into your day to combat the nausea and do any physical activity early in the day.
Second Trimester Pregnancy Sleep Patterns
As you make your way into your second trimester of pregnancy, you might feel your energy coming back. Try not to take advantage of this as your body could still fatigue very easily. It’s recommended that you still get your rest as needed, especially as a few new challenges come into play.
During your second trimester you could find that:
- Your legs cramp up
- You might experience heartburn more frequently
- Certain anxieties could result in dreams that are more vivid than normal
During your second trimester of pregnancy you should avoid spicy foods, as well as start eating a larger breakfast and smaller portions during dinner to avoid heartburn. Meditation and relaxation could help defeat your anxiety, which is why many women take on yoga during pregnancy. The mix of stretching and relaxation during yoga could in turn help with your cramping.
Sleep Challenges During the Third Trimester of Pregnancy
As you’re coming to the end of your pregnancy, sleep is now more of a priority than ever. Unfortunately, many women might find that this is the most difficult trimester in terms of sleep. Your baby tends to be very active, you can’t get comfortable and your body is tired.
During your third trimester of pregnancy you might find that:
- Your heartburn has returned
- Frequent urination – again
- Congestion and snoring
You’ve made it through the nine beautiful months of pregnancy and you’re just about ready to give birth. Until that moment, your uterus is continuing to grow and your baby is dropping lower which pushes on your bladder. As recommended earlier, don’t drink fluids close to the time you lay down. Also, because your belly has grown larger you might not be able to get comfortable. It’s recommended that you sleep on your left side or on your back with your belly propped up. There are special pregnancy pillows available to help aid in a better night’s sleep. Not every woman will snore, but it could happen due to your uterus pressing up on the diaphragm.
The above points are just some sleep symptoms of pregnancy that you might experience. Many places offer childbirth classes, which can help prepare you to face these challenges that might occur.
If you are pregnant, we encourage you to speak with your obstetrician or family doctor.
If you’re experiencing trouble sleeping while pregnant and live in the area, call us and schedule an appointment with our family doctor or pediatrician in Monmouth County, NJ to learn more about the importance of sleep during pregnancy. We will gladly assist you.
Now that you know about the importance of sleep during pregnancy, pass it on!