Sleep is important for your health and your baby when you’re pregnant. Sleep-deprived pregnant women are more likely to develop complications. However, the changes in your body can make getting good sleep difficult.
For example, during the first trimester, the body produces progesterone hormone- a substance that can act like a natural sedative, which makes you feel groggy and interfered with your baby’s natural sleeping pattern, particularly at night.
And in your second and third trimesters, the body changes become more pronounced. Apart from dealing with your tummy, you start dealing with stress, cramps, itchy skin and back pain. So what can you do to sleep better?
Go To Bed Whenever You’re sleepy
When you’re pregnant, the body goes through a lot of changes, and one of them is the amount of sleep. You may often find yourself feeling sleepy earlier than usual. That shouldn’t scare you, it’s natural. In fact, most pregnant women tend to fall asleep earlier in the evening.
It is equally important to listen to your body when pregnant so that you can adjust your bedtime according to how you feel. In any case, there’s nothing wrong or strange about sleeping as early as 7 or 8 P.M.
Exercise During The day
Exercising during the day is a good way to improve your sleep, and there are several safe pregnancy workouts. Doctors recommend activities such as swimming, yoga or walking to keep the body active and fit. So try as much as possible to complete your physical exercise on time before going to bed.
Similarly, do house chores like cleaning and laundry early during the day to give your body enough time to unwind. When doing so, use well-designed vacuum cleaners such as a cordless one from Shark to help you clean difficult areas without straining.
Reduce Your Caffeine Intake
Caffeine is a natural stimulant that can adversely affect your sleeping pattern. It can keep you awake for long hours and make you wake up frequently when you fall asleep. In addition, small amounts of caffeine can keep your baby awake and active throughout the night into the wee morning hours.
So the best strategy is to omit caffeine from your diet. And if you must take it, then avoid caffeine after lunch. This way, you give your baby enough time to process the stimulant and remove it from your system.
Get Enough Sunlight
The body requires sunlight during the day to maintain its biological clock. Lack of enough sunlight affects the production of melatonin, a substance responsible for signaling the body to sleep.
But how much sunlight is enough? Health experts recommend getting at least thirty minutes of sunlight per day. And if you take walks or run that also becomes part of your sun exposure. If you prefer a less active alternative, consider reading a book outside or while sited by the window.
Darken Your Room
Your body requires light during the day, and not at night. So help your body get enough sleep by making your room darker. You can cover the windows with dark curtains to prevent light from penetrating inside. Also, turn off any electronic devices that glow.
Light from virtually any source can hinder the secretion of melatonin. Without it, you can remain awake for long hours. And even if you do fall asleep eventually, your brain will keep on registering small amounts of light passing through your eyelids. And that prevents you from getting deep sleep.
Eat Lightly Before Bed
Just like lights, too much food can also deprive you sleep by increasing the body temperature and initiating digestion when the system wants to slow down. And when you eat little food, the hunger pains can wake you up in the middle of your sleep.
Therefore, it’s advisable to eat healthily and keep food cravings under control. If you must eat, consider taking small snacks like a handful of nuts or fruits two hours before sleep. That gives your body enough time to digest and generate enough calories for the night.
Get The Right Bed And Mattress
The type of bed and mattress you choose has a huge impact on your quality of sleep. For example, too rigid mattresses tend to put pressure on your shoulders and hips. A very soft mattress, on the other hand, doesn’t offer enough support for your back and neck.
Likewise, getting the right bed is not a walk in the park. That’s why most experts recommend using pillows to raise your legs when you sleep on your back. Try different sleeping positions until you find one that suits you.
Getting enough sleep while pregnant is very important for you and your baby. With these tips, you can sleep better. And if you still lack sleep, please consult a medical practitioner.