How Can I Sleep Better During the First Trimester of Pregnancy?

How Can I Sleep Better During the First Trimester of Pregnancy? 2
How Can I Sleep Better During the First Trimester of Pregnancy? 3
Caucasian

Introduction

Were you prepared for the challenge of pregnancy sleep? You must have heard many horror stories about the morning sickness experienced throughout the first trimester of being pregnant. In fact, your body goes through a lot of physical changes during pregnancy.

A belly that is on a constant growth appears to be the most beautiful and joyous thing. But not every woman is well-aware of the few drastic changes that occur within the first three months. Sheer exhaustion and hormonal fluctuations are bound to happen. 

There are chances of nausea that can run for both day and night. Bedtime is pretty important when you are having a child. But which is the best position during this period? It is to be understood that sleep plays an important factor in your child’s growth and development.

Why Pregnant Women Lack Sleep?

The right amount of pregnancy sleep impacts you and your baby. It can impact your delivery as well. Lack of sleep in pregnant women has been associated with a number of complications. This includes preeclampsia, which is a medical condition that has a negative impact on your kidneys and blood pressure.

One of the obvious and first symptoms during pregnancy is that you tend to feel extremely exhausted and overwhelmingly tired. You will be attracted to sleeping. However, you can put the blame on your changing level of hormones, especially progesterone. Pregnancy lowers your blood sugar and blood pressure, and you feel tired.

Sleep is very important to overall health. Women lack sleep during pregnancy because of certain chronic diseases such as obesity, heart disease, depression, and type2 diabetes. When you are pregnant and not getting a significant amount of sleep, it can lead you towards some severe conditions.

Because of the lack of sleep, your delivery can get complicated. In one research, it has been found out that sleeping for less than six hours at night for pregnant women leads to longer labors. They are more likely to get cesarean deliveries. 

How should you sleep in early pregnancy?

How Can I Sleep Better During the First Trimester of Pregnancy? 4
Beautiful Caucasian pregnant woman lying down in bed in bedroom and sleeping.

One of the best sleeping positions during the early stages of pregnancy is to sleep on the side (SOS). It is even better to turn to your left side and sleep. When you sleep in this position, it will increase the flow of nutrients and blood to the placenta. This way, your baby gets the essential things for its growth.

It is a very good habit to avoid sleeping on your back throughout the pregnancy. However, it can be safe during the first trimester. But, lying on you back will make you feel dizzy and lightened. It may interfere with the blood flow to the placenta. 

Other issues may include backaches, digestive problems, breathing issues, and so on. Sleeping on your stomach should be avoided. Until the fifth month, you can sleep in this posture, but after that it becomes uncomfortable. You may feel like sleeping on a big watermelon. If you think that this position may hurt your baby, don’t sleep in that way.

As aforementioned, sleeping on your left side is the best posture you can have during this time. For avoiding sleeping with back pain, you can make use of an innerspring mattress or a firm mattress. A pillow for neck pain would add comfort to your sleep during the first trimester of pregnancy.

How many hours should a pregnant woman sleep?

Soon as a woman gets pregnant, everything begins to change. With frequent vomiting, exhaustion and nausea during the first trimester, it becomes hard to make it through the day without a nap. The second trimester may provide some relief in sleeping, but you may experience more fatigue in the last trimester. 

Women feel tired because of back pain, nausea, and frequent visits to the ladies’ toilet. With an irregular sleep cycle, some women even develop other conditions such as snore, horrible dreams, and insomnia. It was found that about 78% of women have complained about disturbed sleep when they were pregnant.

Your sleep cycle greatly depends on the stage of your pregnancy. For instance, during the first trimester, you may find it hard to sleep. Or, sometimes it may become hard to remain asleep for many hours. The placental growth for your baby is encouraged by the progesterone levels that tends your body to feel sleepy.

So, now the most important question is how many hours you need to sleep when you are pregnant. In general, having slept for less than six hours is harmful to your body. And, sleeping for about 10 hours or more, can have an impact on your body. During your pregnancy, it is recommended to sleep for about 8 to 9 hours.

Can I hurt my baby by sleeping on my right side?

This is one of the most common questions that you will hear when you are pregnant. When you take a look at the popular books on pregnancy and websites, you will find that pregnant women should sleep on their left side. That’s because it won’t hurt the developing baby. 

Many women tend to lose their sleep during this period because they find it difficult to sleep on the recommended side. It is truly uncomfortable to sleep in this posture. As a result, they sleep lying on their backs or wake up being on the right side. They get terrified thinking whether they have harmed their baby.

However, there is nothing to worry about if you are thinking that you have done some damage. It doesn’t matter whether sleeping to your right or left side can harm your baby. Although, the left side is recommended for sleeping if there is a problem to sleep in that position you can take the right side.

During the first trimester, you can sleep in any position. But if you are thinking to develop a habit of going on one side, you can try a leg elevated pillow between the legs. This can give some comfort to your lower body and hips as you adjust. 

When should you stop sleeping on your back in pregnancy?

If you have the habit of sleeping on your back, you need to rethink your strategy. You may have to get into a new sleep position. That’s because it is not healthy to sleep on your back after you have crossed 20 weeks of being pregnant. 

It happens such that when you sleep belly-up, the entire weight of the uterus may compress a large blood vessel called vena cava. As such, the blood flow to your baby may get interrupted. It may even leave you with dizziness, short of breath, and nauseated. 

One of the best ways to sleep is on your left side during the latter part of pregnancy. Many doctors prefer the left side because the major blood vessel, vena cava is situated on the right side of your spine. When you sleep on the left side, your body allows free blood flow to your baby. 

Sleeping to the left side shouldn’t make a huge difference though, but you need to choose whichever side feels better. If there is a need to adjust your sleep positions, you can try to support your body with a variety of pillows, such as a leg elevated pillow. If you have aches, a firm mattress can be helpful. 

How should a pregnant woman should sit?

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Beautiful smiling pregnant woman in dress lying on the sofa touching her belly. Holding hands on the tummy.

Here are some steps you can follow to maintain proper body mechanics and a good posture during pregnancy.

  • Try to touch your buttocks to the end of the chair
  • Make your body straight and make your back accentuate as far as it could get. Hold it for some time
  • Try to release the position slightly about 10 degrees. That’s a good sitting posture
  • Whenever you sit, try to disperse your body weight on both of your hips evenly
  • Keep your knees and hips at a right angle. You can make use of a stool or footrest if possible. Your feet need to be spread on the floor and the legs shouldn’t be crossed
  • Don’t make it a habit to sit in one position at the same place for over 30 minutes or so
  • At work, you need to adjust your workstation and chair height so that you can sit close to your desk. Keep your shoulders relaxed, and rest your arms and elbows on the desk or chair
  • If you are sitting on a chair that rolls, don’t twist it while you’re sitting. Turn your entire body instead
  • When you need to stand up, slowly move to the front part of the chair. Straighten your legs and stand up. Avoid bending forward.
  • Try to keep back support like a rolled-up towel positioned at your back

Is insomnia a sign of twins?

If your bump appears a bit larger than the other mothers, chances are that you are having a twin pregnancy. Well, this is about a general observation on the belly, but how would you make sure if you are actually carrying twins, or not.

An ultrasound may be the perfect way to confirm about the babies. But, it is better if you look out for natural symptoms. It would give you an idea before opting for an ultrasound. There are some factors that increase the chances of having twins, such as if you are over 30 years of age.

Others may include your average height that is over 30 BMI, and if you are already a mother of twins. Despite these symptoms, there are also other signs that show you are having a twin pregnancy. Morning sickness, exhaustion, sleepiness, fatigue, increased appetite, mood swings, and bigger bump are some of the signs.

Apart from all these signs, insomnia is one of the key roles in finding out if you are having twins. Many women have reported developing insomnia during that period. One probably the reason for insomnia may be due to the exhaustion and tiredness. It may also arise out of back pain, indigestion, and cramps. 

Does sleeping position matter in the first trimester?

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Beautiful pregnant woman sleeping with body pillow

The moment you get pregnant, soon you discover that sleeping is the only matter of discussion. These discussions may include a comfortable way to have a great sleep, deciding which sleeping pattern is good for your health, simply not getting enough sleep, or sleeping correctly, or not.

But, does it really matter how you sleep during the first trimester? Luckily, you don’t have to adapt yourself to a brand-new sleep position during the first trimester, which is the first 12 weeks of being pregnant. During this period, your belly grows at a rapid pace.

As aforementioned, the sleeping position doesn’t matter so much during the first trimester. But, it is good for your health to develop a habit of a particular sleeping pattern. That’s because, after the completion of the first trimester, you need to follow a proper posture while sleeping.

When you are in the first trimester, sleeping on the side (or SOS) is the best sleep position that you can have. Keep in mind that while sleeping on your side, make sure that you take the left side. You may be amazed to learn that sleeping on your left side is preferred more than your right side during pregnancy.

When you lie on the left side, the blood flow and blood circulation are improved drastically. As such, the important nutrients are being carried to the placenta with ease. Sleeping on your back during the first trimester is fine but it should be strictly avoided in the later stages. That’s because it puts pressure on your spine, back and blood vessels.

It is a good thing to keep your body on the left side and sleep. It may appear hard during the initial days but in due time it will get adjusted. Sleeping in this posture help movement of blood and nutrients to the placenta, and to the baby. You can sometimes sleep on your back as well.

However, don’t feel restricted to a single position during this stage. When you need to shift weight, feel free to change to your right, left, or back. During the first trimester, the sleep positions won’t make a huge difference. Sleep in a position that makes you comfortable.

Does the baby sleep in the womb when the mother sleeps?

As the pregnancy furthers, you may wonder whether your baby is sleeping in the womb when you fall asleep. When your baby develops, they begin to flex and stretch. And, in the latter part of pregnancy, they will start to roll, kick, or even punch.

The small wiggling, twisting, and kicks of your baby are really intriguing. These movements are an indication that the baby is in good health.

Your baby will respond to the uncomfortable positions, noises, sitting and sleeping patterns. It is common for pregnant women to feel those movements at night more often. One of the theories that possibly explain this pattern is that your baby becomes alert because there is no activity.

The movement of your baby is also responsive to the emotions, noise, foods you’re eating, and waking cycles. These movements can affect your baby as well. When you are awake, your regular movements help your baby to fall sleep. The gentle walking and regular activities encourage your baby to sleep.

But when you sleep at night, all of your movements are stopped. Hence, the baby remains active. They tend to stretch, kick, roll, and suck their fingers. This explains why the newborns aren’t aware of the days and nights. And, they love the movements very much soon after they were born.

Because you are preoccupied with multiple tasks during the daytime, you can’t notice your baby’s movement when you are awake, and the baby goes to sleep. When you go to bed at night, both your body and mind are relaxed. If there is no movement, the baby gets astounded.

This results in frequent movements. It is to be noted that the behavior can vary from one baby to another. Those movements by your baby can be easily felt. You won’t feel the movements during the first trimester.

Babies can remain active throughout the day. But the mothers who are active during daytime can’t feel the movements. Hence, it may be concluded that most of the times the baby remains awake when the mother is sleeping.

Does the baby sleep in the womb when the mother sleeps?

As the pregnancy furthers, you may wonder whether your baby is sleeping in the womb when you fall asleep. When your baby develops, they begin to flex and stretch. And, in the latter part of pregnancy, they will start to roll, kick, or even punch. 

The movement of your baby is responsive to the emotions, noise, foods you’re eating, sleeping, waking cycles, and uncomfortable positions. Your movements can affect your baby as well. When you are awake, your regular movements help your baby to fall sleep. The gentle walking and regular activities encourage the baby to sleep.

But when you sleep at night, all of your movements are stopped. Hence, the baby remains active. They tend to stretch, kick, roll, and suck their fingers. This explains why the newborns aren’t aware of the days and nights. And, they love the movements very much soon after they were born.

Because you are preoccupied with multiple tasks during the daytime, you can’t notice your baby’s movement when you are awake. When you go to bed at night, both your body and mind are relaxed. This is when you can feel them. You won’t feel the movements during the first trimester.

Beauty sleep is real, and your skin utilizes the sleeping hours to heal and recover itself from the damage done during the day. When you are asleep, your skin gets the opportunity to improve. And, you wake up looking beautiful and fresh.

Can I hurt my baby while sleeping?

As the pregnancy progresses, you may find it difficult to sleep. The feeling that you are having a baby in your belly will make it hard to get a comfortable sleep. You can even wake up with spasms and twinges. Your sleep patterns can affect both you and your baby’s health. 

Pregnant women are always advised to keep their bodies on the left side while sleeping. That’s because the flow of blood to the baby is stronger in this position. However, new researches have shown that whatever position you choose, it will carry you through most of the pregnancy comfortably.

When you sleep at your back or right side for one or two nights, it may not cause any health issues for your baby. But sleeping in this position for a prolonged time may increase the chances of miscarriage. Most of the doctors and health experts advocate sleeping on the left side during your pregnancy.

When you are lying on your back, it may cut off the blood vessels called vena cava. It carries the essential requirements for your baby. A strong circulation of blood supply develops the fetus inside your womb. When you sleep on your right side, it is unlikely that your baby will be affected.

However, it can add pressure to your liver. It is quite natural that such a condition can harm you, and eventually it will hurt your baby as well.

Many doctors have assured that women can go through the entire 30 weeks of being pregnant sleeping in different positions. Different sleep positions are likely to affect the baby’s health. Women have been encouraged to sleep on the left side, but they should sleep in a position comfortable to them.

There is still enough research to be done to find out whether the myth of sleeping on the left side holds any ground. So far as modern researches are concerned, there is no connection between sleeping positions and pregnancy complications. Several health campaigns encourage women to sleep on the left side.

When should I start using a pregnancy pillow?

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High Angle View Of Pregnant Woman Sleeping On Bed

As much as your baby needs nourishment from inside to grow healthy, you need to ensure that your baby is protected from external harm. Hence it becomes evitable for a pregnant woman to remain in a safe environment free from any disturbances.

One of the important aspects is to put attention to your sleeping position. Your partner goes through countless sleepless nights for ensuring that you are having a great sleep in a comfortable position without putting your baby at risk. Not all pillows are made equal to provide the same comfort to all pregnant women. That’s where a pregnancy pillow comes to play.

There is no definite time for using a pregnancy pillow. However, after certain weeks of pregnancy, you may find it extremely beneficial to use a pregnancy pillow. You can make use of it as soon as you are feeling uncomfortable while sleeping at night.

When it is about 20 weeks of remaining pregnant, your belly starts to expand. Some parts of your body will have pain or aches. Hence, when you have completed these weeks, you can make use of the pillow. This is the time when you begin to feel its need.

When you are around 20 weeks, your womb starts to get bigger for accommodating our baby. As such, your body may experience different kinds of pain and aches. Hence, a pregnancy pillow will serve comfort during this time. It will also help you with carpel tunnel, back pains, sciatica pains, and even heartburns.

Pregnancy takes a toll on the body. Lack of sleep during this period will make the situation worse for your body. A pregnancy pillow provides support for your back, joints, and provides you a high level of comfort. They tend to wrap around your body and gives you proper support from all directions that are needed most.

What causes sleepless nights during pregnancy?

With all the physical changes a woman goes during pregnancy, there is no surprise that they have trouble falling asleep. Here are some reasons.

Nausea – During the first trimester, about 75% of women experience nausea. It lasts throughout the day and becomes unpleasant at night. It keeps you awake.

Daytime drowsiness – The release of the progesterone hormone in abundance during the early pregnancy, makes you feel drowsy during the daytime and tend to yawn every now and then. It disrupts your sleep at night.

Frequent visits to the toilet – It is very common during the early and later part of pregnancy. Consume less fluid after evening and avoid caffeine. 

Midnight hunger – Constant feeling of hunger during the first trimester can keep you away from sleep. Try to eat a balanced diet that contains fresh fruits, lean proteins, and whole grains.

Insomnia – Most of the women face insomnia during pregnancy. Sleep is very essential in these periods. Hence, work yourself out on this problem as early as possible. 

Too late napping – If you are exhausted, take a quick nap before 3 pm. Try to take a nap for about 20 minutes, and not more. It won’t affect your sleep at night.

Having heartburn – If there is a problem with digestion, you can’t sleep. Hence, do not eat 2 hours before bedtime and try to avoid spicy foods. Keep an antacid near-by. 

You snore much – All the weight of your baby along with your swollen nasal passage can make you snore. Keep nasal drops close at hand or visit a doctor to get a breathing machine called CPAP.

You are freaked out – Perhaps many things are going in your mind such as the delivery of your baby, challenges of motherhood, a to-do list, and so on. All these things can take away your sleep. 

What side should I sleep on when pregnant with twins?

As aforementioned, it is always better to sleep on your left side when you are pregnant. It is also useful when you are carrying twins. It is beneficial to the health of the baby. You can make use of a body pillow if you are having trouble sleeping in that fashion. 

A body pillow is specifically made to support your body during this time. The pillow gives you a comfortable position to have a good night’s sleep. It helps ease the strain on your spine and muscles. Keep in mind to choose a body pillow of not less than 5 feet long.

These pillows are designed to cradle your baby and give support to your back at the same time. Although they are worthy of your investment, they are not suitable for everybody. You can mix your sleep patterns with some normal bed pillows. Some women find them more flexible during pregnancy with twins.

Does sleeping position matter in the first trimester?

The moment you get pregnant, soon you discover that sleeping is the only matter of discussion. These discussions may include a comfortable way to have a great sleep, deciding which sleeping pattern is good for your health, simply not getting enough sleep, or sleeping correctly, or not.

But, does it really matter how you sleep during the first trimester? Luckily, you don’t have to adapt yourself to a brand-new sleep position during the first trimester, which is the first 12 weeks of being pregnant. During this period, your belly grows at a rapid pace. 

However, it’s good if you keep your body to the left side and sleep. It may appear hard during the initial days but in due time it will get adjusted. Sleeping in this posture help movement of blood and nutrients to the placenta, and to the baby. You can sometimes sleep on your back as well. 

Does lack of sleep affect the fetus?

This is one of the most important and sensitive questions that any pregnant woman will have in mind. In the first thought, it may appear that deprivation in sleep may impact your baby. And, it is also understandable that if you won’t sleep, your baby won’t either. But in reality, it happens just the opposite.

There is nothing to worry about your fetus if you aren’t having a good sleep. Your baby is still having a great and wonderful sleep. And, there is no chance your baby will get bothered by sounds that might keep it awake. The baby can’t listen to any of the external sounds.

Your baby is surrounded by muscles and skin. The amniotic fluid and sounds from your heart act as an insulator for your baby. This way, it protects from the routine movements and outside noise. However, your baby might be at risk if you are suffering from insomnia during pregnancy. 

Insomnia will affect your ability to perform. This might be fatal when you stumble or fall because of exhaustion. Hence it is extremely important to sleep for a minimum of 7 to 8 hours per night. Research has found out that women who sleep for less than 6 hours at night, experience longer labor and have a cesarean section.

Is it OK to elevate legs while pregnant?

Yes, it is perfectly fine to elevate your legs during your pregnancy. You may begin to notice pain in the legs as soon as the first trimester ends and the second one starts. It is to be understood that leg pain isn’t reserved only for the end part of the day. It can happen in the morning, or somewhere in the middle of the night. 

One of the great ways to relieve leg pain is to elevate your legs during pregnancy. All you need to do is simply lie on your back on a bed or a couch. Place your legs on the pillow. Try to raise your legs a few inches above. This will allow the blood to flow back to the heart. 

This way, your veins, and your heart will get relieved from swelling during this process. It is recommended to arrange pillows right under your knees, calves, and thighs. You can do this while relaxing in your bed or watching TV.

Conclusion

Bedtime is considered to be the most important thing that you can have with your baby. You need to understand that sleep is crucial both for you and your baby during the first trimester of your pregnancy.

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