How to Sleep When Pregnant? Some Frequently Asked Questions
Created by Chayanika Sen Updated on May 04, 2020
Is it safe to sleep on my stomach during pregnancy? Sleep is vital for all human beings – a well-rested body has a balanced mind and more active physically. If you are pregnant and are about to enter the best phase of womanhood, you need to take certain precautions which seem to be trivial, but are utmost essential for your unborn baby. Pregnancy brings about a lot of changes in you and your body, and one such disruption happens in the way you sleep and how you sleep. When you walk, sleep or even do mundane jobs, you have to extra conscious since your slightest negligence can be fatal to your little one inside.
Can I Sleep On My Stomach During Pregnancy?
When you are in the early stage of pregnancy, the answer is yes, provided you are comfortable with the position. During the most of the first trimester of pregnancy, your little baby, is very small to give you the feeling of a "bump". Especially in the first trimester, you will hardly feel its presence in a big and neither would others. So sleeping on your stomach should be alright during the early stage of pregnancy. And if you are worried about the baby, be assured that your baby is well-cushioned inside the layers of amniotic sac.
Uterus is one of the strongest muscles in a woman’s body since it can carry a human being for 9 months. Hence it offers great security and protection to your baby as far as external injuries are concerned. So it is fine to sleep on your stomach during the first trimester if you are used to it otherwise. Just be conscious that you take a donut shaped pillow, so that you can support your belly properly. Know what is the correct sleep position during pregnancy?
Sleeping On The Stomach During First Trimester Of Pregnancy
The first trimester of pregnancy is marked by pregnancy symptoms like heartburn, nausea and morning sickness. Women often feel tired and fatigued soon after doing any physical activity. They also tend to sleep more, sometimes at a stretch to give their body some very-well deserved rest. With so much going on inside the body, rest is only justified. If you are comfortable sleeping on your stomach, you can very much continue that when you get pregnant. As the baby grows and the abdomen starts to expand, this may not be the ideal position to sleep in, in terms of comfort.
Sleeping On The Stomach During Later Trimesters Of Pregnancy
Experts have noticed that there is no real harm in sleeping on your stomach even if you are at the final stages of your pregnancy, though it may be added here that most women prefer to sleep on their sides as the growing abdomen makes it difficult to lie on the stomach. As your baby grows inside you, your organ stretches too, and manages to reach to your belly button at around mid pregnancy. So in most cases, mothers to be find it difficult to lie on stomach as the bump can be felt by them at ease. The position can’t hurt your baby as it is safely inside the water balloon with much required warmth and a muscular uterine wall to protect it. However some old midwifes are apprehensive about the position since the uterine wall gets thinner as pregnancy reaches to its third trimester. If you feel comfortable, and are fine with this position, you may well continue to sleep on your stomach for as long as you want – and for added support use a donut shaped pillow.
Also Read: pregnancy Myths and facts
Can I Lie On My Stomach While Pregnant?
You can, provided you are comfortable with the position and are not exerting beyond a reasonable pressure. However, uterus being a strong muscle and your baby being inside its protective covering, you can be rest assured that your baby won’t be squashed. But however, few women don’t find it comfortable to sleep in any other position than on sides, hence sleeping on stomach feels quite an undesirable task for them.
Can Sleeping On Stomach Harm My Unborn Baby?
Well, not really. When you sleep on your back during the later stages of pregnancy, you may feel additional pressure in the spine and the neck as the stomach is way much bigger and sort of disrupts the posture. It is also believed that sleeping on stomach puts pressure on the uterine wall and eventually might have the same effect on the unborn baby as well. Sleeping on the stomach can also press your breasts, that are already so sensitive to touch during pregnancy.
What Are The Risks Of Sleeping On The Stomach During Pregnancy?
There are, however, a mixed response to the risks that are associated with sleeping on your stomach during pregnancy. If a woman is comfortable in sleeping that way, she can continue so without any fear. However, in case there are any complications during pregnancy she should definitely avoid doing so because:
- Sleeping on the stomach is believed to put pressure on the uterus and eventually on the baby. So a woman should avoid doing so
- It can cause pain in the neck and the spine because of the posture the body adopts
- Sleeping on the stomach after having food can cause heartburn as digestive juices in the stomach tend to move upwards
- The baby might have a better kidney function in case mother sleeps in some other position than stomach
- Sleeping on stomach might lead to dizziness for the mother
- Some mothers have complained to have a faster heart rate upon continuous sleeping over the stomach
Also Read: Lower Back Pain during pregnancy
How Can I Sleep Better During Pregnancy?
You can always choose to sleep in side positions, preferably on the left side. This causes more blood to flow to the baby and hence helps in its proper growth. If you feel you can simply put a pillow in between your legs, to provide more comfort to your body. You can also support your back with additional pillows and make yourself comfortable during night. If required you can also put two pillows on your feet and raise it in order to stop feet swelling. You can put lights dim and also play soft music before you finally go to sleep.
You must take care of your baby much before it comes to the world. The biggest issue is that you cannot see it and hence can’t determine what comforts it or what doesn’t.
Hence you should do nothing that gives you a slightest feeling that it would be harmful for your little angel. Happy motherhood !