When you are pregnant, you are trying to accommodate a new life inside your body so you need to give extra attention to your health. Aside from proper exercise and eating healthy, expectant moms-to-be should have adequate and quality sleep while they are pregnant. Having enough sleep when you are pregnant is not only for your own good but for the baby as well. Knowing the importance of sleep during pregnancy is critical. As the baby grows inside your tummy, finding a comfortable position to sleep has become a challenge. One of the most comfortable positions is lying on your side with your knees bent. This is good for the heart and you will have lesser chances of having varicose veins, hemorrhoids, and swelling in your legs. It is recommended that you sleep on your left side so as not to disrupt the flow of blood to the placenta.
Having poor quality of sleep is normal during pregnancy. In fact even women who have no sleeping problems in the past find it difficult to sleep when they get pregnant. According to researchers at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, poor quality and not having enough sleep can interfere in the normal immune system function of pregnant women and may lead to complications at birth like pre-term births and low birth weight. Hormonal changes, anxiety, pain and discomfort are just some of the contributing factors why pregnant women find it difficult to sleep.
Studies show that poor sleeping habits during pregnancy can have a negative effect when you give birth. There is a better chance that you will spend longer hours laboring when you did not have quality sleep during pregnancy. Women who have better quality and quantity of sleep when they were pregnant are more likely to have normal delivery and have more inclined to avoid the C-section.
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Having enough sleep is vital to the development and growth of the baby. Pregnant women get tired easily so all the more that they need more time to rest and sleep. During pregnancy, your body changes and so is your sleeping patterns which is just normal. Kicking baby, leg cramps and frequent trips to the bathroom will most likely disrupt your sleep during the night so an afternoon nap of an hour or two can make a difference. Sleep disorders such as breathing pauses and snoring can pose health risks like high blood pressure, diabetes or even preeclampsia to pregnant women. When this happens, the baby inside the mother’s womb may not grow normally and healthy.
To have better quality of sleep, you must sleep comfortably. A better position would be on your left side with your knees bent slightly. For added comfort, you may place a pillow in between your legs and at your back for support.
Stop consuming caffeine in any form because it can prevent you from having natural and complete sleep. Pregnant women normally experience a lot of discomfort in their body during pregnancy. As much as possible, limit your fluid intake during the night to lessen your trips to the bathroom while sleeping. However, make sure that you don’t get dehydrated in the process.
To maximize the importance of sleep during pregnancy, learn to schedule things. As much as possible, try to adapt a bedtime routine so that your biological clock will adjust accordingly. Sleep and wake up at the same time every day. To help your body realize that it is time to sleep, do certain rituals everyday so that your body will adapt. This could be as simple as brushing your teeth or taking a shower.
To have a healthy pregnancy, stress-free delivery and healthy baby, you must put extra attention to the 3 pillars of health. These are good and healthful diet, moderate exercise and sufficient and good quality sleep.