We all have our favourite sleep positions and this often needs to change as baby grows. Finding the right position is not easy especially that lying on your tummy or back are not the best choices. Now, more than ever, you really need a good night’s sleep but this becomes harder to get as the pregnancy progresses.
Sleeping on your stomach
If you usually sleep on your stomach, this is achievable in the first trimester until eventually the bump will become too uncomfortable and you will need to switch to a different position.
Sleeping on your back during pregnancy
Experts recommend that pregnant women avoid sleeping on their backs during the second and third trimesters. This is because the entire weight of the growing uterus and baby presses on your back, your intestines and your vena cava, the main vein that carries blood back to the heart from your lower body.
This pressure can aggravate backaches and haemorrhoids and make digestion less efficient and interfere with circulation. Less-than-optimal circulation can also reduce blood flow to the foetus, giving your baby less oxygen and nutrients.
Sleeping on your left or right side
During the second and third trimesters, sleeping on either side — preferably the left, if possible — is ideal for you and your baby-to-be. This position allows for maximum blood flow and nutrients to the placenta (which means less pressure on the vena cava) and enhances kidney function, which means better elimination of waste products and less swelling in your feet, ankles and hands.
Full-body and wedge pillows can be a pregnant woman’s best friend.
Types of Pregnancy Pillows
Regular pillows are designed for head rest, but a pregnancy pillow is designed to ease various body aches and come in many different sizes and types
- Pregnancy body pillow. This pregnancy pillow is literally the size of your body. You sleep on it as if you’re lying across your partner.
- U-shaped pregnancy body pillow. This pillow is contoured to wrap all around you. Depending on your sleep position, it can prop you up if you like to sleep on your back or wrap you front and back once you begin sleeping on your side in the second trimester.
- A pregnancy wedge pillow is much smaller and less expensive, designed to support a targeted area - typically the bump on your tummy or your back.