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Getting a good night’s sleep during your pregnancy can be hard to come by as your body works towards developing your baby and you are preparing for the physical event of childbirth . Being able to get sufficient rest is an essential part of your pregnancy but it seems strange that when your body needs it the most, sleep eludes you. Trying to find an ideal sleeping position and adjusting to the changes of each trimester can often be a challenge.
During the first trimester of your pregnancy you may discover that you are sleeping more than usual as your body works to nurture your developing baby. This rarely means a good night’s sleep as the pressure on your bladder from your growing uterus causes you to make countless trips to the bathroom during the night.
As the nausea and fatigue subsides, the second trimester is a good time to set a routine by going to bed and waking up around the same time each day to help establish a pattern in preparation for the third trimester.
Most pregnant women find that they have the most trouble getting uninterrupted sleep during the latter stages of the pregnancy. As the foetus increases in size, it is harder to find a comfortable sleeping position.
Many pregnant women report having vivid dreams, especially in the last trimester. These dreams can mainly be attributed to your changing hormonal levels. They are completely normal and may reflect your concerns about how you are going to cope with your new life.
Although it is common for pregnant women to experience interrupted sleep during the night there are various ways where you can minimise its impact on your usual sleeping pattern.
Try and get into the habit of sleeping on your left-hand side with your knees bent. There are some people in the medical profession who believe that lying on your right-hand side is best avoided while you are pregnant. There is a major vein in your body called the vena cava, on this side that is responsible for taking blood back to the heart, and pressure on this may reduce your blood supply and cause dizziness.
It often helps to know what is affecting your sleep the most and work towards reducing that. Introducing a gradual process instead of changing all the elements of your pregnancy at once can allow your body to adapt to a different sleeping pattern as it changes through each trimester.
There are bound to be nights where you just can’t fall asleep. Instead of worrying about not getting enough rest, try occupying the time with something you enjoy – read a book, listen to music or catch up on emails.