Getting a good night’s sleep can become seemingly impossible as pregnancy progresses, particularly in the later stages when it is increasingly more difficult to find a comfortable position. Perhaps it is oddly ironic that at a time when you need to be conserving your energy and preparing yourself for your impending arrival, a good night’s sleep is harder than ever to achieve. Whilst finding a comfortable sleep position is not easy, there are also some important recommendations on the safest pregnancy sleeping positions that you should be aware of during each trimester.
What pregnancy sleeping positions should I avoid?
Sleeping on your front
During the first couple of months of pregnancy, it is perfectly safe to sleep on your front if that is your preferred position. However, as your pregnancy progresses, lying on your front is not recommended and will eventually become impossible as your baby and bump grow. Therefore, it might be a good idea to try sleeping on your side even in the early days so you get used to that position.
Sleeping on your back
Sleeping on your back is another pregnancy sleeping position that is advised to avoid, especially during the second and third trimesters for a number of important medical reasons. Lying on your back whilst heavily pregnant puts a lot of pressure on your abdomen, intestines and major blood vessels. It is also uncomfortable as the pressure on your back increases the longer you lie on it. Pressure from lying on your back can cause backaches, digestive problems, low blood pressure, breathing issues and potential haemorrhoids. There are potential dangers for your baby too as blood circulation to your heart and baby can decrease.
What should I do if I wake up on my back?
It is really important not to panic if you wake up on your back during the night. The risks of any of the more serious complications caused by sleeping on your back are relatively small, especially if you have only been lying on your back for a short time. So if you do wake up on your back, simply roll on to your side and drift back off to sleep.
What are the best pregnancy sleeping positions?
There is in fact only one golden rule when it comes to sleeping during pregnancy that is easy to remember. The SOS rule (Sleep on your Side) refers to recommendations that the safest pregnancy sleeping position is sleeping on your side. Sleeping on your side relieves pressure on your growing uterus and will aid breathing and circulation.
In fact, some recommendations suggest that lying on your left-hand side is better for you and baby as it helps pump more nutrients and blood to your placenta and baby. When lying on your side you should also keep your legs and knees bent if possible.