Sleeping Positions During Pregnancy

A woman’s life is never at ease. It is always a down and up-hill track of emotions and changes. Though a woman, capable of doing almost everything equally efficiently to men, yet they stand miles ahead of men when it comes to perseverance, for bringing forth a life requires patience and efforts. Always a mixed bag of emotions, the role of women becomes for responsible once the pregnancy tests turn out positive. It’s not just the hormones in play but once the enchantment of the blessing fades out, reality hits and hits hard in the face. Pregnancy, no matter how small it may sound, it comes with requirements of sacrifice, pain and extra care.

Of various problems related to pregnancy, one of the major one remains to find a perfect, balanced, comfortable and harmless sleeping position with the growing baby bump. Often during pregnancy, women find difficulty in adjusting to a comfortable sleeping position and end up with a racing heart, breathlessness and back pain and other issues as a result of poor sleeping positions.

During pregnancy, a woman’s body undergoes several changes, baby bump being one of the most prominent physical change, due to which the usual sleeping positions stop working for a woman any more, causing significant hindrance in the peaceful slumber. As per renowned gynecologists, in the first trimester of pregnancy, sleeping in one’s favorite position will not cause any harm either to the mother or the child, however, certain discomfort may be caused.

To ascertain women around and to answer their queries, here is all one needs to know about few major sleeping positions:

Sleeping on the back

After 12 weeks of gestation, when the implanted uterus and the baby bump begins to grow, sleeping on the back can turn out to be harmful both to the baby and the mother. Sleeping on the back suppresses the Inferior Vena Cava, the largest vein in the human body responsible for taking back the deoxygenated and used blood from various organs and placenta(in case of a pregnant woman) back to the heart to begin another round of the circulatory cycle.

It also suppresses Aorta, the artery that takes blood from the heart to various body organs and the placenta. Since both to and fro of the blood from the heart to various body organs and the placenta is restricted and hindered, the mother often wakes up with a feeling of short breath, racing heart and uneasiness. It is also advised to make use of the best pregnancy pillows as they have been made keeping in mind all these problems.

Sleeping on the stomach

While sleeping on the stomach remains harmless and inconsiderate in early pregnancy days, but sooner with an increase of gestation time, it causes discomfort in sleeping and one may have to shift accordingly to find a comfortable sleeping position. As the bump increases with the increase in the size of the fetus, sleeping on the stomach for a woman becomes difficult.

Sleeping on the stomach not only cause a certain level of discomfort, but it results in the same problems as in case of sleeping on the back. Both arteries and veins get pushed back by the placenta causing the return of blood difficult and hence the prominent uneasiness to the mother.

Sleeping on the sides

Sleeping on your left side is apparently the best position to sleep for the mother with a growing bump. Sleeping on the left side pulls off the weight of the uterus away from the blood vessels allowing an unrestricted flow of blood to and fro the heart, ensuring the better growth of the baby. However, sleeping on the right side can prove to be injurious as it still forces certain pressure on the IVF and the Aorta, causing similar issues as discussed above. Using pillows to prop up the uterus, preventing it to shift back to the right and hence lifting off the evident pressure from the blood vessels can be one fruitful option to deal with the problem.

For most women, it is not uncommon to sleep in left-side position and to wake up in another position. Even if something of this sort is spotted, there is nothing to worry or panic about, for it is highly unlikely for a woman to sleep in a wrong position for a long time. For example, if a woman wakes up sleeping on her right side then there is nothing much to worry about, for it would not have been too long sleeping in that position. Post first trimester, sleeping on the back causes short breath and racing heart which interrupts the sleep and causes the pregnant woman to wake up. However, if a woman continues to wake up in an undesired position, she can always ask her partner to keep a check on her and shift her back to the normal and intended position.

Significant care should be taken when it comes to sleeping positions in addition to sleeping time, pattern and diet of a woman to ensure a healthy mother and child.

Mandy Wright
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