Sleep in pregnancy: 8 tips

In pregnancy, one of the disorders that bothers the future mother the most in addition to nausea, heartburn and cramps is sleep with difficulty falling asleep and sleeping well.

Pregnancy involves some disorders among which there may be the quality of sleep that worsens. Difficulty falling asleep or sleeping badly and not being able to rest the necessary are common problems for those who are pregnant.

The reasons for poor sleep in pregnancy

Poor sleep happens for a few reasons:

  • Leg cramps that wake us up
  • Hormonal changes, especially progesterone
  • The awareness of another heartbeat, of the presence of the child
  • The need to urinate more often given at the beginning by hormones and then by the weight of the belly
  • A very active, kicking child
  • Difficulty turning in bed due to the presence of the belly
  • Back pain in the lower part
  • Nightmares and agitated dreams that we didn’t have before
  • Nervousness, anxiety and fears if you are in the final stage of pregnancy.
  • Concerns in general about the big changes that are taking place and that will happen after birth

Tips for sleeping better during pregnancy

If you do not sleep well follow these tips can help you improve the quality of sleep, which is very important in general and especially in pregnancy where the body is normally more fatigued.

  1. Do not smoke and do not drink alcohol: in addition to hurting your baby, they disturb your night’s sleep.
  2. Limit your intake of coffee, tea, chocolate and all carbonated drinks and avoid them in the late afternoon or evening.
  3. In the afternoon and during the evening it is better to limit yourself to water or herbal teas, obviously that do not contain caffeine or other substances that can be stimulating. Chamomile or “good night” herbal teas can help. However, it is good not to drink too much otherwise you will have to get up repeatedly to go to the bathroom!
  4. Some foods can be avoided at dinner: tomato and chili pepper (or generally spicy and difficult to digest foods) because they can cause heartburn and indigestion. With heartburn you do not sleep well. You can possibly anticipate the meal so that 3 hours pass before bedtime.
  5. If you arrive fatigued at dinner time, too much tiredness could produce the opposite effect to sleep, making it difficult for you to relax to fall asleep. The advice is to look for a time in the day to take a 30-minute nap.
  6. Continue or start doing a physical activity such as yoga or even simple walking. Do this exercise at least three to four hours before bedtime to let your body regain the effort.
  7. If you attend a yoga or relaxation and breathing course, the moments where there is visualization are very important: through a guided story your body is brought to relaxation and the breath becomes deep dissolving muscle contractures.
  8. A bath helps. You can put in the bath, 6 drops of these essential oils: lavender will reconcile sleep, neroli (derivative of orange blossom) will relieve stress and chamomile will appease low back pain.

During the bath

If you have the opportunity to take a hot bath, it is a very effective method of relaxing.

Close your eyes, slowly inhale the air from your nose and exhale with your mouth and think about the baby.

Imagine it.

Caress your belly and swing from side to side, in this way the water will lull you and tensions will melt.

The position to sleep better

The position in which you sleep is very important for the quality of sleep and it may be necessary, even with a little effort, to learn to change position compared to your normal habits.

To help to assume the right position in bed there are specific pillows for pregnancy that for many are a panacea.

Sleeping supine

It is possible until the second trimester because your belly is not yet very heavy. I advise you to raise your legs with a pillow.

Sleeping on one side

Choose the left side so as not to compress the vena cava under the uterus. Do you have a breastfeeding pillow? You can place your belly and right leg on top of this pillow.
The supports that are long and have spelled, pine or rice hulls are excellent. The long pillow should have a flat part to rest your pelvis on and a new padded part to support your back.

Sleeping on the stomach

It is still possible if you stand in a three-quarter position with the leg bent. The fetus risks nothing.

The relaxing herbal teas and…

Help for insomnia in pregnancy is also given to us by herbal teas and there are ready-made ones in many versions and flavors.

Excellent, for example, infusions to drink in the afternoon and evening based on:

  • Melissa: relaxes muscles, calms and soothes.
  • Passionflower : it is useful when insomnia arises because you suffer from anxiety or heartburn.
  • Chamomile : for those who would like to sleep but cannot digest.

To prepare the infusion, pour the boiling water into a 200 ml cup and put a kitchen spoon of the herbal tea inside. Leave to infuse for 15 minutes, filter, you can add orange or linden honey.


Nutrition is essential to sleep well. Those who eat badly, especially in the evening, then will have difficulty with sleep. But also in general how the diet is balanced affects the good quality of sleep.

Follow a diet, where vitamin B is abundant. So yes to cereals, whole wheat flours, yeast extract, fish and vegetables.

Wrist massage

The area to be massaged is located on the inside of our wrists in the joint area with the hand. It will be very pleasant and will immediately lead you to relaxation. It’s a simple massage, ask your partner for 10 minutes of his time to gain a few hours of better sleep!

Have a nice rest!

Kathryn Barlow is an OB/GYN doctor, which is the medical specialty that deals with the care of women's reproductive health, including pregnancy and childbirth.

Obstetricians provide care to women during pregnancy, labor, and delivery, while gynecologists focus on the health of the female reproductive system, including the ovaries, uterus, vagina, and breasts. OB/GYN doctors are trained to provide medical and surgical care for a wide range of conditions related to women's reproductive health.

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