July 3, 2013
Welcome to part two of our series about sleep and pregnancy. For those of you who have been with us since Part 1, I’m glad to have you reading this again. So, are you ready to wrap up this series by finally learning how to treat or cope with those common problems and symptoms we talked about in the earlier article? Well, we are, so I hope you are too.
How do we start with this?
Before anything else, it’s important to acknowledge that treating pregnant patients isn’t always easy. Drug therapy, for example, is usually a common method of dealing with getting rid of symptoms discussed in Part 1. However, that’s what raises the red flag in a pregnant patient. This is mainly due to the fact that drug therapy in itself can harm or risk harming the developing baby inside the womb.
Most drugs that treat insomnia, like sleeping pills, carry some risk in itself that is harmful both for the mother and infant baby. Not all of the drugs that treat the 4 symptoms we mentioned in the previous article are completely harmful, though. For example, gastro-esophageal reflux (a.k.a. heartburn) can be treated with over-the-counter antacids. (Still check with a physician, however, just to be sure).
Now you may be thinking, what about the rest of the 3 symptoms? Well, don’t think that all hope is lost. The good news is that there is an end to it. By default, it usually ends after the baby is born, but that doesn’t mean that proper sleep should be taken out of regard once that happens. Proper sleep is for everyone. So what’s the best treatment? It’s coping with it without the medication.
So what do you mean exactly?
Well, it’s true, and we all have to admit that sleeping throughout the period of pregnancy is quite the challenge. So here’s the real “tips” we’ve been talking about. It’s not medication, but it’s better, and by “better,” we mean safer. The goal of these tips is simply just to reduce the amount of hours that you spend in discomfort, wide-awake and stressed. In other words, the aim is to simply help you sleep.
Prioritize and properly schedule your sleep
Honestly, this doesn’t have to apply to only pregnant women. This is advice a lot of people just seem to fly through and take for granted, but this is a must for everyone. A lot of sleep disorders are put into motion and maintained in it by just having really bad sleeping habits. So, you know what to do now: have a good sleeping habit.
Exercise (unless told that you can’t)
It’s good for you. It’s good for everyone, including the baby. Try to do simple exercise, like stretching to promote proper blood circulation which both you and the baby need.
Drink lots of fluids, specifically water
A very big percentage of the human body is made of fluids and water. That’s why it doesn’t come as a surprise to say that drinking fluids, especially water, is good for you. Drink a lot of safe-to-drink-while-pregnant fluids, wihch definitely doesn’t include coffee and alcohol. It’s good for you. Just remember to not drink too much near bedtime since having the urge to pee when you’re supposed to fall asleep is a really big hindrance to what we want you to accomplish – sleep.
Eat the right foods
Like the first tip, it’s obvious that this properly applies to everyone. Vegetables and other proper sources of nutrition are the ingredients to having a right, healthy body – both yours and the infant’s. But especially when you’re pregnant, avoid spicy, oily, fried, and acidic foods. For other foods, make sure to take them in moderation, okay?
You don’t have to force yourself to sleep
Sleep should come naturally. If you’re there, lying awake at night, don’t force yourself to sleep, because that usually doesn’t work. So instead, get up, read a book, or do something productive to make the most out of those waking moments. That’ll help you go back to sleep naturally, and that’s what we want for you.
Seems easy, huh? Take it easy. It’s your moment. Relax, this time is special for you and for your child. Every moment is precious, and that includes the night. So lie down and let the your sleep usher you into sweet, sweet dreams. Good night!