Expecting a child is one of the most beautiful experiences in life. Children are such a blessing that they fill your life with joy, hope, and purpose. For pregnant mothers, this joy can periodically wane due to discomfort associated with carrying a baby, especially when going sleep.
Of course, you have to contend with physical discomfort – your bed or chair no longer feels comfortable-, hormonal fluctuations, and anxiety.
Your wonderful bump should not have to be a bad experience. It should constitute some of your best moments to make it more memorable. The following are some of the tips to help you have a good night’s sleep throughout the pregnancy term.
1. Stay Hydrated as You Can
The most basic and most natural way of making your pregnancy comfortable, and sleep like a toddler is drinking a lot of beverages. The recommended amount is approximately ten glasses measuring ten ounces.
But don’t worry if you achieve less or more. After all, we all have different needs. Make sure your drink count is close to that. You may be among the cliché of women afraid that by taking a lot of water or any other liquid can lead to fluid retention.
Nothing could be farther from the truth. Actually, not taking adequate water is the primary cause of this condition because your body will want to retain as much water as possible when it feels dehydration setting in.
Many expectant mothers may suffer from swollen feet and ankles – these can give you a lot of sleepless nights. However, drinking a considerable amount of water helps get rid of it. If the condition becomes worse, it is best to seek the services of your caregiver.
Frequent beverage intake especially water play a significant role in the prevention of conditions that often affect expectant mothers such as bladder infections, hemorrhoids, and constipation. For the bladder infections, water dilutes urine, in turn, preventing infections.
Keeping hydrated even becomes more critical during the last trimester. It is during this stage that the risk of preterm labor increases as a result of dehydration. You would not want to have your bundle of joy earlier than expected.
2. Diet During Pregnancy
Your body is at the most sensitive during this time. Watch your diet and keep off from beverages that can cause insomnia such as alcohol and caffeine. If you need to reduce nausea, then try crackers of bland snacks.
Don't overeat but keep slightly full to prevent nausea. Remember that maintaining a proper diet is critical during this time of pregnancy as it will keep you feeling satisfied. The more satisfied you are, the more peacefully you sleep.
3. Avoid So Much Spicy Foods
Some mothers don’t see the reason for avoiding spicy foods. Spicy foods can cause cases of heartburns that can aggravate during the night – a bad time! You can imagine how much discomfort this can cause, especially when you are trying to get your mind off the pregnancy – thinking about the unborn baby can also lead to sleepless nights, and you don't need anything else to add to the anxiety.
Give yourself about a two-hour gap between eating and sleeping. This includes beverages that can cause you to wake at night to go to the bathroom. Don’t let anything interrupt your sleep cycle. Avoid new foods which you are not sure how your body will react to them.
4. Do Regular Exercise
As a pregnant mother, your primary desire is to lie on the bed all day and night. Carrying extra weight is tiring, but you should exercise often. Regular exercises improve your health by enhancing circulation. This reduces leg cramps that form during the night – this can really keep you awake.
Exercises also help you deal with stress and anxiety. When you sweat, your body releases toxins and bad vibes. It enables you to deal with the emotional rollercoaster that pregnancy can lead to. After all, it is easier to sleep when tired and your body feeling relaxed as a result of improved blood flow.
Avoid Exercises before Bed
Don’t exercise in the evening as it can also cause sleepless nights – adrenaline released when you exercise can keep you really awake. Avoid over-exercising to the point that you are panting and breathing heavily. Remember that your unborn child requires adequate oxygen, and lack of it is dangerous.
Also, remember that this is the time that your hormonal levels are the highest. There is a high level of relaxin hormone in your circulation, and this makes your muscles tender. Heavy exercise can thus cause injuries which instead of helping sleep will lead painful and sleepless nights.
5. Engage in Calming Activities
Pregnancy undoubtedly results in an emotional rollercoaster – at least for many expectant mothers. Several activities can help you deal with anxiety and stress. Don't engage in strenuous activities just before bed as that can lead to sleeplessness.
Yoga or meditation will help you deal with anxiety. It will help you relax and bring down your worries and thoughts, so you sleep better at night. Most importantly, yoga enables you to breathe better and relax appropriately to deal with physical demands that come with pregnancy.
"Ujjayi Breath" is the first technique you learn in yoga classes. It involves taking in significant amounts of air through the nose and exhaling deeply. This method teaches you to stay calm especially when you need to – you need this when you can’t get to sleep.
Yoga not only helps you sleep better, but it also diminishes chances of having complications. Chances of having a premature birth also go down considerably and can sleep better during the night – when you know this. However, certain poses, especially at the back, can restrict blood flow to the uterus. Avoid them.
A massage to your back, neck, and shoulder can just be what you need to relax, feel better and smoothly go to sleep. Your partner or a commercial device can help achieve this.
About half an hour or so to bed, avoid anything that will likely produce a mental stimulation. Avoid electronic devices such as cell phones and iPads which inhibit melatonin production – this is the sleep hormone. Reading a novel or listening to music is better – you will not realize dozing off and right into the dreamland.
6. Restrict your Bed to Bedtime Activities
Our minds work in an exciting way and can readily associate the bed with stress activities – that is if you use this room to sort the bills and catch up with work. Restrict this place to just sleeping and sex. This will ensure that going to this room leads to a sense of relaxation.
You can listen to music and read a book not related to work or class – it should be for pleasure.
Pregnancy comes with its own challenges that include anxiety, stress, pain and general physical discomfort – of course, your body is experiencing something unusual. These can cause insomnia which is not good especially at this time – you really need the rest.
You can enjoy a good night’s sleep with such tips as maintaining the right diet and taking the right amount of fluids. Exercise to enhance circulation and get involved in relaxing activities an hour before bed.
And if the sleeping problem does not get better, then its time you consult a paediatrician.