11 May Need Help Sleeping?
Need Help Sleeping?
Pregnancy is undoubtedly one of the most exciting and joyful times in a mother’s life. Unfortunately, it’s not as easy as it seems and can really take a toll on one’s mental and physical health with all these new hormonal and anatomical changes.
There are many common symptoms associated with pregnancy that are usually harmless but can be a cause of nuisance for the mother. If you haven’t guessed the one on topic for today, it is pregnancy-associated insomnia or sleep disturbances!
Mothers usually report feeling extremely tired yet unable to fall asleep when they want to. This can happen any time during pregnancy but is most common in the third trimester.
Reasons It Can Be Difficult to Sleep
There might be a lot of reasons why you’re unable to get a proper night’s sleep when pregnant. Here are some of them:
- Anxiety or worries regarding your pregnancy outcome, fear regarding labor pain, or feeling inadequately prepared to be a parent
- Other pregnancy-related health problems like heartburn or indigestion, nausea, or abdominal pain
- The need to urinate frequently throughout the night since your bladder is being pressed upon by the gravid uterus
- Restless leg syndrome
- Aches or pains such as round ligament pain or breast tenderness
- Unable to find a comfortable position to sleep in with the baby bump
- Having vivid dreams
- Feeling unreasonably warm due to an increased metabolic rate
Ways to get comfortable
If you’re struggling to sleep, here are some tips to help you out:
- Treat any underlying symptoms you’re having. There are pregnancy-safe treatments available for most aches and pains like heartburn and nausea. Speak to your healthcare provider to see how they can help!
- Similarly, avoid any triggers for heartburn or nausea so it doesn’t bother you later at night. If you must consume spicy or fatty foods etc, do it during the day, but avoid it at night.
- Avoid drinking too much liquid near your bedtime so you don’t feel the need to pee when you’re sleeping.
- Try accomplishing a small task if you can’t sleep. Clean a cabinet or do the dishes, anything that diverts your mind and makes you tired enough to sleep.
- Get a pregnancy pillow to make yourself more comfortable.
- Crank up the air conditioning if possible!
Tips for better sleep overall
Pregnant or not, we can all suffer from disturbed sleep or the inability to sleep at times. Here are some tips to get a better night’s sleep.
- Practice sleep hygiene. Avoid using your phone or any other screens when you’re about to sleep, keep the room dark and comfortably cool, and do anything else that might make it easier for you to fall asleep.
- Have a proper pre-bedtime routine. You’re basically conditioning your body to sleep following a particular set of tasks, keep your routine the same for a set number of days until you get used to it.
- Some people may benefit from white noise machines.
- You can try taking melatonin or other supplements that make it easier to sleep. Be sure to ask your healthcare provider before self-medicating!
- Try working out near your bedtime so you’re tired by the time you hit the bed and fall asleep easily.
- Try accessories like an eye mask or a weighted blanket that may make it easier to sleep.
If you fail to fall asleep despite trying every trick out there, be sure to consult your healthcare provider to rule out any underlying issues and treat them if needed!