Healthy Habits for Sleeping Well during Pregnancy

It becomes harder and harder to maintain a good sleeping routine as the pregnancy progresses. Nausea, pressure on the bladder, cramps and mood swings and usually the factors that stay in the way of a good night’s rest. Here are a few tips on how to develop healthy habits that will help you sleep well during pregnancy.

Find a good sleeping position

Sleeping on the side is the best position for both you and your baby. On the opposite end is sleeping on the back: this can result in back pain and problems with breathing and circulation. As the pregnancy evolves, when lying on the back, the weight of your uterus puts pressure on your back and intestines and reduces the blood flow to your uterus. Sleeping on your stomach is not associated with any risks, but it can become very uncomfortable as your belly and breasts increase in size.

As you progress towards your third trimester of pregnancy, train yourself to sleep on the left side. This position is optimal for increasing the blood flow and provision of nutrients to your baby. Shifting positions during sleep is perfectly normal and should not be a reason to worry. If you reach an uncomfortable position, you will wake up. Many pregnant women find it difficult to stick to one position. If you’re feeling tired or uncomfortable from sleeping on your left side, try using pillows to prop up your back or legs.

Create a sleeping routine

Establish a sleeping routine and try to stick to it. Pair it with a ritual that helps you relax before going to bed, such as drinking a glass of warm milk, brushing your hair or reading. Avoid eating, watching TV or surfing the web while in bed. It’s easier to fall asleep when you associate sitting in bed with sleeping and not with stimulating activities that normally occur during the day.

Use relaxation techniques

Relax your body and mind with a massage, stretching exercises and prenatal yoga. Exercising will also help you stay in shape and improve your circulation and your physical well-being. Schedule you exercises in the morning and afternoon, but keep your physical activity low in the hours before bedtime.

Take daytime naps

Take half-hour naps during the day to reduce fatigue. One or two power naps of 10 minutes are also healthy for your mental and physical well-being. You will feel less tired and have better concentration throughout the day. Avoid taking naps that are longer than 30 minutes, otherwise you might feel drowsy all day.

Eat little and often

In between your main meals, include snacks and small meals. This keeps the energy levels stable and it also helps reduce pregnancy nausea for some women. Eat fresh fruits and vegetables and avoid spicy or fatty meals to ease your digestive system.