Most women experience sleep problems during pregnancy. Pregnant women tend to get more sleep during their first trimesters but experience a big drop in the quality of their sleep. It turns out that pregnancy can make you feel exhausted all day long. It can also cause insomnia at night. Insomnia means you have difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep, or both. Women can experience insomnia during all stages of pregnancy, but it tends to be more common in the first and third trimesters.
What causes Pregnancy Insomnia?
There are many reasons you might be wide awake in the wee hours. These can include:
- Frequent urination
- Nausea or vomiting
- Back pain
- Breast tenderness
- Abdominal discomfort
- Leg cramps
- Shortness of breath
- Vivid dreams
- Morning sickness
- A hopped-up metabolism that keeps the heat on even when it’s off
- Difficulty getting comfortable with your growing belly
- Kicking, flipping and rolling from your active baby on board
- Pre-birth anxiety and worries
Treatments and Home Remedies
Treating insomnia is a little more challenging when you’re pregnant, but it’s not impossible. Many sleep medicines aren’t considered safe for pregnant women and their babies. Lifestyle changes can safely improve your sleep. Stick to a early bedtime, and start with these steps.
- Limit caffeinated beverages. not only do they keep you awake, but they make it harder for your body to absorb the iron you and your baby need.
- Drink plenty of water during the day, but stop drinking a couple of hours before bedtime so you don’t have to wake up to go to the bathroom.
- Ditch the screens. Scrolling through social media on your phone or watching television on your tablet can keep you up at night.
- Eat smaller meals more often and eat earlier.
- Consider steering clear of heartburn triggers like chocolate, and greasy or spicy foods.
- Get out and walk for about 30 minutes a day. Exercise helps you sleep better. Just don’t exercise within 4 hours of bedtime because it can keep you awake.
- Take a warm bath, or ask your partner for a massage to relax you.
- Talk through your worries. You can talk to a partner, a friend, or a therapist. Talking to someone can help get your anxieties off your chest.
- Save your bed for sleep.
- Keep your bedroom quiet, dark, and cool at night to help you sleep.
- Have a bedtime routine.
- Smell your way to sleep.
- Work it out during the day so you can rest at night.