I have heard many people say that not sleeping during pregnancy is preparing you for the sleep deprivation you will encounter once your child is born. For me, this does not make sense. If I am going to drive all night somewhere, would I spend the previous several nights staying awake to prepare? Or would I get better sleep and nap the day of the drive?
It is much better to go into a situation where you may lack sleep, being well rested. I’ve included some tips below to help you get some rest, before you cannot!
Tips to help pregnant women sleep
- Try not to drink too many liquids before bed. Although you may very well still have to get up and go to the bathroom during the night, especially as your pregnancy progresses, it is better not to drink too much before bedtime so you are not getting up too often.
- Have a calm bedtime routine. Try do to calming activities before going to bed. Read a book, take a bath, whatever calms you.
- Dim the lights. About an hour before bed, try to dim the lights in your home. This will signal your body that sleep is coming soon.
- Turn off electronics before bed. The lights from smartphones, laptops, tablets, and even televisions can inhibit the production of melatonin, a calming hormone that helps your body sleep. Try to turn them off about an hour before bed.
- Get comfortable. You may need extra pillows to help you get comfortable. Body pillows are also a help in getting totally comfortable.
- Check the temperature. Ideal sleeping temperature is between 68 – 72 degrees. However, when you are pregnant, you may find you need it a little cooler. You do not want to be too warm at night since your body temperature decreases and if you are hot, your body works harder to decrease your temperature, making your sleep less restorative.
- Take naps. Do not feel guilty taking a nap here and there. Remember, you are growing another human being inside your body!
- Take it easy. Do not be afraid to say no to people wanting you to come here and there. And if you can, try not to work right up to your delivery.
You want to be well rested going into labor and delivery and going into caring for your newborn. You will not have time to rest when they get here, so do it now!!
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