Did you know that the average human spends at least one third of their lives sleeping or attempting to do so? A pregnant woman is definitely not the average person. She carries and grows a human being, which is a lot of work. And all that work is bound to leave her exhausted and in need of some serious rest. That’s why experts encourage pregnant women to take naps whenever required. But finding a comfortable position to curl up and sleep in is easier said than done when your huge belly that always gets in the way. The position in which pregnant women sleep is important as it may affect the well-being of the baby. After all, the last thing you’d want is to put your baby at risk while you’re resting. But since your go-to positions are no longer an option due to bodily changes, here are 3 safe and comfortable positions for every sleepy soon-to-be mom. Enjoy!
1. Sleeping On Your Stomach
This one is for all the soon-to-be mommas who are used to sleeping on their stomachs. It’s okay to do so, for a limited amount of time. If you usually slept on your belly before you were pregnant, you can still stick to this position in the early months of your pregnancy, since there is no evidence suggesting that it might be harmful for the baby. However, you will need to find another position to sleep in quickly because after the first semester you simply will not be able to sleep on your stomach. Laying on your stomach will be uncomfortable for both you and the baby, so it is unlikely that you will continue to choose this position to rest in.
2. Sleeping On Your Side
This sleep position is elite. This position is very popular amongst pregnant women as it is the most comfortable and the safest for mom and the baby. Sleeping on your side will enable good blood flow without putting any pressure on your internal organs. And although both sides are safe, It is suggested that choosing the left side leads to several benefits (1). It will increase the amount of blood and nutrients that reach the baby. It can reduce the risks of stillbirth and help your kidneys get rid of waste products and fluids. It also alleviates the excess body weight from pushing down on your liver (2). Although it may be a little hard at first, adjusting to sleeping on your left side is worth the hassle.
3. Hands And Knees Position
Although you can’t sleep in this position, it is extremely beneficial for pregnant women and their babies. The hands and knees position can help ease back pain and loosen joints while providing some much needed comfort and relaxation to expecting others. As for the child, this position is believed to encourage the baby to move into the correct birth position, which is great for labor (3). To practice this position, simply put a pillow under your knees, a yoga mat would also suffice. Then slowly stand on your hands and knees but be careful not to arch your back or shoulders. After finishing, make sure to get up slowly so as to not get a head rush. A great way to simplify this position is by using an exercise ball. Resting your hands on the ball while on your knees is an easier variation of this position which provides additional support.
Positions To Avoid While Pregnant
Sleeping on your back while pregnant is a big no-no. It just isn’t as safe as before since the full weight of the baby and the womb will put pressure on your internal organs causing several complications including difficulties in blood flow to the placenta (4). That is why expecting women are advised to choose another sleeping position. Choosing a safe sleeping position is an easy way to decrease the risk of having a stillbirth or the chances of poor fetal growth. However, there is no need to become too anxious and worried about this. During uncomplicated pregnancies, the risk of having a stillbirth is very low (5).
Instead, use pillows to help support the weight you are carrying. Place a pillow behind your back to keep from falling back when you are sleeping on your side. Also, place a pillow between your legs. This will give additional support to your pelvis, hips and spine (6). If you suffer from heartburn, elevating your head by placing a couple of pillows under your head can help.
Pregnancy may be beautiful but all the bodily changes and fluctuating hormones can take a toll on you. So, resting up and sleeping is the best thing you can do for yourself and your baby. Hopefully this article will help get the sleep you deserve. What position do you find to be the most comfortable while pregnant? Let us know in the comments section. Happy pregnancy!