Best sleeping positions during pregnancy
By ESTHER MUCHENE | 1 month ago
As the baby grows, sleeping becomes a challenge and finding a comfortable position seems next to impossible.
If you fell asleep much faster while sleeping on your back you may have to reconsider that position.
You risk disrupting blood flow to the baby which may leave you nauseated and dizzy because as the pregnancy progresses, the weight of your uterus may compress the vena cava, a major blood vessel.
And if that isn’t enough, there is the frequent urge to pee, heartburn, constipation, leg cramps and back aches due to the release of relaxin, a hormone that loosens the ligaments in preparation for childbirth that makes expectant mothers prone to injury.
As you also battle fatigue, your sleep can be interrupted and this may lead to stress.
Before the baby arrives, this is the time you should be getting restful sleep. To help you do that, here are some of the recommended positions to consider for a peaceful sleep
1.On your stomach
Until your tummy bump grows to an uncomfortable size, you can definitely enjoy this position.
For about 18 weeks, you may do so until it gets to a point where it feels like you’re sleeping on top of a ball and it starts to get uncomfortable.
If this happens to be your most preferred sleeping position you should consider a pillow for extra support when your tummy bump gets bigger.
2.On your back
Sleeping on your back is not recommended especially in the third trimester. The back sleep position exerts pressure on the blood vessels that deliver blood to the uterus.
Studies have shown that it may cause back pains and even digestive problems since the baby’s entire weight is resting on your organs.
During your first trimester, however, the risks are low and this position can be enjoyed until the belly starts growing.
Doctors and experts alike agree that women should sleep on their left side during their second and third trimester terming the position as ideal for both mother and baby.
It encourages blood flow by putting less pressure on the vena cava which carries blood to your heart and to the baby. Nutrients are also able to flow better to the placenta.
Since there is less pressure on your kidneys and liver as well, waste products are better eliminated and you will experience less swelling in the ankles, feet and hands.
So, should you give up sleeping on the right side altogether? Not quite.
When in discomfort you will naturally roll over to find a more suitable position. If that means sleeping on the right side there is no harm.
But to avoid the risk of compressing vital organs and veins, a pregnancy pillow may come in handy.
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