How Many Hours Should A Pregnant Woman Sleep?

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The stress, hormones, and even nausea may not give you a good night’s rest that you so desperately need during pregnancy. Expectant mothers may be exhausted and uncomfortable throughout the day. And it continues even when you hit the bed at night. Your doctor may have requested you to get at least 7 hours of sleep every night. There could be several reasons that are stopping you from getting deep sleep.

Frequent Urge To Pee

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If you are in your first trimester, progesterone may be partially the reason for your urinary frequency (1). Other than making you drowsy, you may visit the bathroom several times during the night. And as your pregnancy progresses, the uterus will compress your bladder which will lead to peeing more often. It can be quite frustrating for women to wake up in the middle of the night to relieve themselves.

What You Can Do: Avoid drinking anything late in the evening. Though it’s important to stay hydrated, make sure you drink plenty of fluids during the day. And empty your bladder just before going to bed.

Nausea/Morning Sickness

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Nausea or morning sickness is one of the early symptoms of pregnancy (2). But it can hit you any time after the first or second trimester as well. Though it’s referred to as morning sickness, it can occur any time during the day or night disrupting your sleep. Even taking an afternoon nap may not be possible when you are experiencing bouts of nausea.

What You Can Do: Have small meals more frequently instead of three large ones. Keep some plain crackers or dry bread near your bedside table. This way you’ll have something to eat the first thing in the morning to mitigate nausea. Stay away from spicy, fatty or greasy foods and anything with a strong smell. Get on your feet and take a walk or workout after consulting with your doctor. If nothing else works and you have a severe case of nausea, your doctor might consider prescribing some over-the-counter medications.


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Heartburn is another factor that can ruin a good sleep by waking you up in the middle of the night (3). It can start in your first trimester and continue until the end of your third trimester (4). Let’s face it, it’s hard to sleep when you feel a burning sensation in your chest and throat.

What You Can Do: Try eating smaller frequent meals as we have mentioned before. Avoid drinking water in the middle of a meal. Make sure you chew your food properly before swallowing. Avoid having anything close to bedtime. Use pillows to raise your head while sleeping. Avoid anything spicy, fatty or acidic that can trigger heartburn. Doing yoga or breathing exercises may also help to deal with heartburn. And, try sleeping on your left side.

Find A Comfortable Position To Sleep

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As your body is growing and constantly changing (especially the baby bump), sleep may become harder to come by. You may find it most difficult especially during the third trimester. If you have been a person who always sleeps on their stomach or back, it would be a struggle to sleep on your side. Since sleeping on your side is the best position to sleep during pregnancy, here are a few things that you can do to get comfortable (5):

  • Use pillows to get comfortable. Bend your legs and knees and keep a pillow between them.
  • If you are experiencing back pain, placing a pillow under the abdomen may also help while you are sleeping on your side.
  • Raise your upper body slightly by propping up pillows if you have heartburn.
  • You can also purchase a pregnancy pillow that is specially designed for pregnant ladies.

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Sleeping on your side is also known to increase the blood circulation and ensuring that the essential nutrients reach your baby and placenta.

Make your bedroom cozy by dimming the lights and turning off any gadgets. Getting proper rest is crucial to get you going throughout the day and it also keeps you energized. We hope that with our tips and remedies, you will be able to get sound sleep.

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