Every couple when expecting a baby anticipate that lack of sleep will be ahead of them. However, not every woman knows about pregnancy insomnia during the pregnancy itself!
You may hope to get plenty of sleep just before your baby arrives. Every couple expecting a baby know, the sleepless nights are ahead of them!
However, mother nature has something else in plan! Just when you are the most in need of rest, your back aches, your belly is big and you are in constant need to urinate!
Pregnant women experience pregnancy insomnia both because of the physical and emotional discomfort. The growing belly changes a woman’s body. It causes physical discomfort.
At the same time, the growing baby can play a role in feeling anxious and worried. You worry whether the baby’s health and growing progress are in healthy development.
Women can start feeling worried and find it hard to fall asleep at night. In fact, Cari Nierenberg, suggests that women should take the same approach as ‘eating for two’ for sleeping! Women start eating more because of the growing human being in their belly. They therefore need more sleep!
The following article will discuss the reasons why women feel restless during their pregnancy. What are the best positions to sleep when expecting a baby and great tips how to improve your sleep quality!
Reasons For Lack Of Sleep During Pregnancy
As your baby is growing you might have trouble staying asleep. You can’t fall asleep because of the aching back, full bladder and teeming fears and anxieties about your baby.
The following are few most common reasons why women experience pregnancy insomnia and have troubles staying asleep.
Constant Need To Urinate
Women who expect a baby start feeling a constant need to urinate. It is mainly due to blood flow to the pregnant women’s kidneys.
In fact, the blood flow in a pregnant woman's kidneys increases by up to 35 to 60%. Therefore, pregnant women’s kidneys grow about 1 to 1.5 centimeters through the pregnancy.
The extra blood flow in your kidneys produce up to 25% more urine. The increased urine production peaks at the weeks of 9 to 16 and later on settles down.
Also, the uterus of a pregnant women gets bigger as the baby grows. It puts a higher pressure on the bladder which in return causes a constant need to urinate.
The following phenomena occurs in the last 3 months of your pregnancy. It is because the baby grows heavier and bigger. The baby moves further down in women’s pelvis which causes a need to urinate more frequently.
Although frequent urination is a symptom of pushed down pelvis as well as increases blood fluids in your kidneys. The changes in your hormonal balance will also have you running to the bathroom more often!
Leg Cramps And Back Pain
Pains and aches in legs and back are complete normal in pregnant woman's body. Because of the growing baby your start feeling cramps in your legs, thighs and feet.
The cramps and pains therefore occur due to the expansion of the uterus. It puts pressure on your blood vessels and nerves that causes this phenomena.
A study from Yale University shows, nearly 60% of pregnant woman experience pregnancy insomnia due to back pain.
The exact reasons why pregnant women experience back pains are unknown. However, it is suspected that the extra weight that pregnant women are carrying causes this discomfort. In fact, during pregnancy a healthy weight gain is from 12 to 16 kilograms on average!
Pregnancy back pain occurs where your pelvis meets your spine. It is also known as a Sacroiliac Joint.
The other reasons for a back pain during pregnancy can be posture changes. Also muscle separation, hormone changes or psychological stress.
Shortness Of Breath
Yet another reason why you experience pregnancy insomnia can be shortness of breath! You may feel out of breath more easily. Or feel like you need more oxidant than you needed before!
If you feel shortness of breath and experiencing trouble staying asleep. You should not worry! Your body is naturally taking care of it.
In order to balance your shortness of breath your body increases hormones, so called progesterone. It directly affects your lungs and stimulates respiratory center of your brain.
In fact, the number of breath you take per minute does not change. However, the amount of air you inhale and exhale changes significantly!
Feeling short in breath especially affects the first half of the pregnancy. Later on, it normalizes and you will get used to it!
You feel short in breath because your uterus puts more pressure on the muscles just below your lungs. It is also known as diaphragm. It also can be aggravated by the pre-existing conditions. Conditions such as asthma, anemia or high blood pressure.
Constipation or Stomach Cramps
In early pregnancy you can therefore experience pregnancy insomnia due to constipation or stomach cramps. It is all due to the changes in your body.
It is firstly because of the increased hormones in your body. Your body produces progesterone which relaxes and reduces the muscles of the intestinal wall and the stomach.
It therefore slows down your digestion and increases your blood volume. Also, the growth of the uterus makes it worse due to the pressure against the stomach or the large intestine.
How to Remedy The Physical Symptoms
Now we discussed all the possible causes why you may experience pregnancy insomnia. It is time to overlook the remedies of those physical symptoms that may help you to overcome pregnancy insomnia or ease up your day-to-day life!
Constant Need To Urinate
Are having troubles in staying asleep due to constant urination? Unfortunately, there is no way around this. It will gradually get better, but embrace this experience and don’t restrict the fluids in your body!
It is extremely important for you and your growing baby to stay hydrated. In fact, it is suggested to drink around 6 to 8 glasses of fluids every single day. Drinking enough water will make sure that you maintain healthy pregnancy and feeling good during the process!
Although it is important to stay hydrated and there is no real remedy for avoiding the increased going to the bathroom. In order to reduce your bathroom trips you may avoid beverages that have mild diuretic effects.
In fact, beverages that contain mild diuretic effects increases the excretion of water from your body. Indeed, it increases the amount of times you want to go to the toilet and fills your urine with fluids.
Beverages that contain a huge amount of mild diuretic effects are tea, coffee or soft drinks!
Yet another great remedy is to increase the fluid intake during the day time and cut it down before going to bed. You may want to save 3 to 2 hours before going to bed drinking too much of the liquids that may have effects on pregnancy insomnia.
Leg Cramps And Back Pain
If the part of your pregnancy insomnia is legs cramps or back pain. You may want to practice a stretching routine before the bedtime!
The best way to do so is by stretching your legs and toes towards you. If your belly is already too big and you find it difficult. You can therefore ask your partner to help you with it.
If you find yourself sitting and resting a lot. You may want to stand up and go for a walk more often. This can relieve some tension in your legs and therefore minimize the cramps.
Yet another great way to relieve the tension in your legs and back is by going for a massage. You can do it by asking your partner to help you with it, or simply having a professional massage time!
Diet can also make a difference! It is believed that nutritions such as potassium, calcium or phosphorus supplements can relieve the cramping. However, you may consult with your doctor before taking any of it!
Healthy diet will not only help you with leg and back cramping but also help to keep you and your baby healthy! You should try to implement a lot of fresh vegetables fruits, green leafy vegetables and enough calcium rich foods!
Shortness Of Breath
If you experience pregnancy insomnia due to shortness of breath. You may would like to follow these tips for relief:
- Take Things a Bit More Slowly
- Use Extra Pillows In Your Bed
- Sit Up Straight And Keep Your Shoulders Back
- Try To Be Patient
When being active or doing sports try to take your time and take it slowly. There is nothing wrong in pushing your limits and be active regardless of growing belly.
However, try to listen to your body and do sports or outdoors activities with a precaution!
Yet another great tip is to use an extra help with the pillows! You may want to prepare yourself with a few extra pillows when you're in bed at night.
You can use extra pillows below your neck, stomach or legs areas! Once again listen to your body and make it comfortable for yourself.
When you are sitting down or standing up. Try to straighten up your back and keep your shoulders back.
Straight posture will lungs much more room to expand and in return provide you with more oxygen!
It is definitely not comfortable nor calming to be out of breath! Try to be patient and relax as much as possible.
Embrace the experience of being pregnant and know that after a baby delivery all of those docomforts will go away! In fact, you wish you had a change to experience it all over again.
Constipation or Stomach Cramps
If your main problem of pregnancy insomnia is constipation of stomach cramps. Try to drink enough fluids to help it flush it through your body!
In fact, drinking a lot of liquids, exercising and snacking on prunes can be your best way out of feeling this way.
Best Positions To Sleep In Order To Fight Pregnancy Insomnia
So what are the best positions to sleep during your pregnancy! The best direction to sleep is so known ‘SOS’. SOS stands for sleeping on the side!
It is interesting to know, that the best direction to sleep is on your left side! Sleeping on your left side will increase the amount of blood and nutrients that reach the placenta and your baby.
You are wondering how to sleep on your side? Keep your knees and legs bent and put a pillow in the middle between your legs.
You can therefore try SOS position if you are experiencing strong back pains. It therefore helps if you are experiencing heartburn during the night.
In your late pregnancy you may experience an increase in shortness of breath. In this case how to sleep on your side also includes preparing your bed with a lot of pillows and helping yourself to balance your problem areas.
The best positions of fighting pregnancy insomnia also include knowing how to sleep on your back! Indeed, is sleeping on back while pregnant possible and not dangerous?
It is suggested that you should not practice sleeping on back while pregnant. You should especially avoid it after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
When you are sleeping on your back with belly-up. Your uterus can compress a major blood vessel, called the vena cava. It can disrupt the blood flow to your baby and leave your dizzy and short of breath!
Indeed, the best way to sleep in order to fight pregnancy insomnia is sleeping on your side, especially left side!
Yet another great way to fight pregnancy insomnia is by making sure of a good quality mattress. Healthy sleep is essential especially when during pregnancy!
Vita Talalay natural latex mattresses provide the healthy sleep that you and your baby need. It is the hygienic choice, and provides optimal support and comfort at the same time. Many people suffer from back pains and this may be especially the case during your pregnancy. The optimal support will make sure that your whole body gets the rest it needs and deserves.