Not only does your belly continuously burgeon when you are pregnant, making your back sore in the process, but what happens on the inside is actually determined never to let you doze off as well. Miraculous as it always is, pregnancy never comes without sleep disturbances, and lower back pain and nocturnal kicking are only some of the tireless causes of pregnancy insomnia.
Nausea, headaches, leg cramps, heartburn and constant bathroom runs, together with fluctuating hormones, can make you incredibly tired and result in severe cases of exhaustion. Luckily, there are a couple of tricks to help you soothe your restless expecting body. Here’s how.
1. Modify Your Daily Health Regimen
If you’ve already mastered the art of napping before pregnancy, and still enjoy practising it, be careful for how long you do it during the day – when longer than half an hour, naps can interfere with your regular sleeping schedule. It’s probably for the best that you start off your day with a light exercise routine that focuses on stretching, deep breathing and muscle relaxation.
With numerous health benefits, yoga offers a number of positions that are safe to practise during pregnancy, so be sure to explore and include them into your fitness regimen. It might be a good idea to visit a massage therapist, as long as they are trained to work with pregnant women. Also, consult with your doctor and learn more about essential oils and how to safely use them.
2. Turn Your Wired Bedroom into a Peaceful Bedchamber
In relation to that, it’s crucial to keep all your daily drama away from your bedroom. Start preparing during the early days of pregnancy, and redecorate it to be less of a playroom and more of a bedchamber – start with turning down the temperature so it doesn’t make you warmer than your hormones already do, and exclude all possible distractions.
Ticking clocks, Wi-Fi wired devices that keep buzzing even throughout the quiet hours and artificial lights are the sneakiest of bedroom intruders. At least for the sweetest 9 months of your life, free your bed of late night TV and work, and use it only for sex and sleep instead.
3. Keep a Sleep Diary
Being a hormone that directly affects your sleeping cycle, melatonin is a super important factor that shouldn’t be disturbed in any way. To keep it functioning regularly, establish an unwinding pre-bed routine and a sleeping schedule to stick to. Avoid any late day activity that may put additional pressure on your body and treat yourself with a relaxing bubble bath half an hour before hitting the bed.
As for the schedule, it’s always a good idea to keep a sleep diary in order to determine which resting hours suit you the best and how long your body needs to recover completely, and then try to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day according to your findings.
4. Make Your Pillows Firmer
When it comes to sound pregnancy sleep, choosing comfy pillows and a bed that supports your back and neck is absolutely paramount. Strategically placed firm pillows that prop up your head and upper body will reduce pressure from your diaphragm and help you breathe more easily.
Settling for the cheapest mattress is definitely the biggest mistake you can make – instead, spend some time researching and find the one that suits you. Pregnancy experts all agree that sleeping on the left side can increase the blood and nutrient flow from your body to the womb, and besides that, it will do wonders for your backaches.
5. Have a Cookie for Your Cravings
Late night cravings are never more unnerving than during pregnancy, but when indulged, they result in indigestion and heartburn. Instead of having that lush piece of cake or a full bucket of chicken wings, try avoiding spicy food that’s heavy on the stomach and large meals before bedtime, and appease your desires with a glass of warm milk with cereals or a cup of tea with a cookie on the side.
Not only will these light snacks not cause nausea during the night, but they will actually keep your belly full and calm all the way to the morning and ease morning sicknesses. And, as always when insomnia hits, steer clear of caffeine later in the evenings.
And, if all these tricks still don’t work, don’t get discouraged too soon. Instead of tossing and turning all over the bed, simply get up and take a short walk throughout the house, until you are again weary enough to sleep deeply, just like your baby does.