Sleep Tips Pregnant Women should Know about (Part 1)

June 30, 2013

Pregnancy is a blessing. It’s the gift of life made possible through another human being. It’s a wonderful thing. Although it is a privilege, being pregnant entails responsibility as well as sacrifice. For the price of bearing to life another soul, a little bit of physical discomfort will be experienced within the duration of 9 months, which can be truest during the night.

In this entry, we’re going to talk about sleep tips pregnant women should know about. But why does this have to concern pregnant women specifically? Well, that’s because they have needs that are as special as the task they are chosen to bear.

Okay, let’s break this down into two major parts. I’ll break it to you first that pregnant women will indeed encounter a lot of fatigue and sleep problems. That’s why they need specific sleep tips, because special needs sometimes entails having specific difficulties. But don’t get discouraged! Having specific difficulties does not mean that there is no solution; it only means that there are specific solutions.

In this series of two articles, we’re going to deal with the thing in its entirety. The second major part is how to deal with them, but in introductory article, we’re mainly going to be talking about those common problems or symptoms that pregnant women will encounter at nights.

Basically, most of what causes these disorders is the pregnancy itself, due to the changing of the mother’s hormone levels. But it’s also not uncommon that pregnancy amplifies whatever sleep disorder the mother already has even before pregnancy. Then again, whatever causes it, the best way to deal with it is by first learning about them. And that’s exactly what we’re going to do.

Pregnant Woman Sleeping

Insomnia

In its most basic sense, insomnia is a sleep disorder that is characterized by difficulty falling asleep, keeping yourself in deep sleep, and waking up with the feeling of still being extremely tired. Note, however, that there is a difference between having actual clinical insomnia and just really having bad sleeping habits.

In this context however, insomnia is fueled by the stress caused by the pregnancy itself: mental and physical. The added bonus however would be that that “physical” stress is caused by the baby’s movements inside the womb. I don’t know about you, but that’s actually kind of cute, in a way.

Sleep Apnea

Sleep Apnea is a sleep disorder that mainly concerns the breathing pattern which interrupts sleep due to its irregularity. Although this is common even with people who are not pregnant, this is a bit more noticeable with pregnant mothers. Sleep apnea usually accompanies snoring or pauses in the breathing pattern.

Restless Legs Syndrome

The Restless Legs Syndrome includes an unpleasant feelings in the legs that can be put to words as a “tingling” sensation that gives one the urge to move the legs or just to twitch them (even subconsciously.) This is common even with simply standing up, but the feeling is even more noticeable at night when about to sleep, which becomes quite a problem because it’s just flat-out annoying.

Nocturnal Gastro-Esophageal Reflux

In simpler terms, this is just heartburn, but it is only experienced at night. It’s very normal at pregnancy, but in the context of sleep, it disrupts sleep and becomes quite the predicament for obvious reasons. It irritates the esophagus and therefore causes discomfort which then upsets sleep.

Well, those are just some of the common physiological problems pregnant women usually have to hurdle over in order to get a good night’s rest. But it’s totally worth it. Remember that a pregnant woman sleeping is actually two people trying to get some rest. It’s not very far from adjusting with sleeping next to another person, right? Well, a little perseverance will help a lot. Stay tuned for the second part of this article to learn how to cope with it. But as for now, sweet dreems!