- Many mums-to-be struggle to fall to sleep and stay asleep during pregnancy. As your body changes, the hormones go into overdrive and the little person inside you grows, it can definitely lead to you staring at the ceiling and desperately counting sheep. I remember experiencing insomnia to some extent during my pregnancy. I would also wake through the night either because I was hungry or uncomfortable. So I thought I would compile a list of items and suggestions to help you sleep better during pregnancy.
Night Owl by Hottea Mama is the perfect herbal tea to calm the body and aid sleep during pregnancy. Each tea bag contains a beautiful blend of camomile, rooibos, limeflowers, valerian and lavender. This tea is perfect in all stages of pregnancy, especially if you are experiencing pregnancy insomnia and night wakings. I was not fortunate enough to know of this brand during my pregnancy, however I love the different pregnancy teas they offer followed with essential blends to survive the next phase, motherhood!
Sleep by The Cle Collective is a wonderful natural alternative to counting sheep. Perfectly safe during pregnancy, this essential oils blend will assist with relaxing the mind and body whilst encouraging a deep sleep. An amethyst gemstone roller ball, chosen specifically for its healing energies, will let you easily apply this oil which contains ingredients such as lavender and sandalwood. I have been using several different blends from The Collective Collective on myself and Mackenzie and I love these natural alternatives to alleviate some of our everyday woes.
3. Pillow Spray
I have been using a pillow spray for years because I love the smell and it always reminds me of being on holidays in Singapore (the hotel must have used similar smelling oils / candles in their lobby). Whether it is a placebo effect or not, I definitely think it is worth trying to help aid sleep better during pregnancy. Here are two pillow spray options to help you rest easy:
I swore by the Mama Mio product range whilst I was pregnant and still credit the Tummy Rub Oil to one of the reasons that I didn’t gain any stretch marks (see ‘5 Products to Prevent Stretch Marks‘). This Sleep Easy Kit by Mama Mio looks like the perfect combination to de-stress after your day and ease yourself into a deep slumber with a bath & shower oil, the tummy rub butter and a pillow spray.
5. Pregnancy Yoga / Pilates
I have previously discussed the benefits of ‘Pilates during pregnancy‘. Unfortunately I was unable to find a Pregnancy Pilates class in York when I arrived here at 20 weeks pregnant, so I joined a pregnancy specific yoga class instead. I would always fall asleep during final relaxation and those nights would be my best sleep of the week. Not to mention that I made some beautiful friends and we now get to watch all of our babies grow up together. If you can’t get to a class then perhaps go for a gentle walk in the evening – the fresh air and exercise will do you the world of good and should help you get a better sleep each night.
6. Read Before Bed
Reading always seems to make me sleepy and shuts down my brain from thinking about ‘all the things‘. Why not join my virtual book club and read your way through the ‘9 Books on my Reading List for 2019‘. Or if you would like to read some pregnancy related books, I would recommend ‘How to Grow a Baby and Push It Out‘ by Clemmie Hooper (UK based mums) and ‘The Baby Bible‘ by Rebecca Judd (Australia based mums).
7. Heat Pack
Pregnancy can cause lots of aches and pains, and I personally found a heat pack to be my best friend during those 9 months. Most evenings I would have a heat pack on my lower back to help ease any stiffness or pain, which then aided in me getting a better nights sleep. It goes without saying that you should be careful not to make it too hot, and also not place it on your belly. These WheatyBag heat packs would do the trick, and have the option of being scented with lavender which would help to relax the body further.
8. Comfy Bed Clothes
Sounds pretty obvious, right? However your body changes quickly during pregnancy and as your belly and boobs swell, it is likely you will not want any restrictive clothing when you jump into bed. My fave thing to sleep in was a loose bed shirt that I had purchased pre-pregnancy from Peter Alexander. Here are a couple of options from my favorite brands (and the button down night-shirt will also be perfect for breastfeeding later on). Consider buying a size up to allow room for your growing bump.
9. Snacks / Water
I remember raiding the fridge on many occasions in the middle of the night during my pregnancy. A hot chocolate and biscuit would normally satisfy the hunger, although in hindsight perhaps the sugar content wasn’t the best option whilst trying to sleep. I recall several mums-to-be mentioning that they would keep snacks on their nightstand. Either to conquer the midnight hunger or due to them not being able to get out of bed until they had eaten something. Its safe to say pregnancy takes the term ‘hangry‘ to a whole new level.
10. Pregnancy Pillow
I never used a pregnancy specific pillow but I have known many women whom swear by them. This Queen Rose Full Body Pregnancy Pillow & Maternity Pillow (available on Amazon) looks like a great option and receives excellent reviews. A pregnancy pillow will aid in taking pressure off joints and give you support for your growing bump and back, essentially leading to better sleep during pregnancy. I particularly like that the cover is washable and that you can use the pillow as a nursing pillow once bub arrives.
Finally, you will likely hear that women should not sleep on their backs during pregnancy. The National Sleep Foundation advises that the biggest issue with resting on your back during pregnancy is that “it causes your increasingly heavy abdomen and uterus to press down on the major vein that works to return blood from your lower body to your heart. So lying on your back can make you feel lightheaded and dizzy, and also interfere with the delivery of blood and nutrients to the placenta and your growing baby.”
Good luck with getting a good night’s sleep during your pregnancy and I hope that my suggestions help to some extent. Be sure to comment below letting me know which tips you are going to try and whether you have any other suggestions to sleep better during pregnancy. Sweet dreams, Shell x
Disclaimer: I am not a health or fitness professional and all opinions are based on my own thoughts and experiences. It is imperative that you seek advice from your doctor, midwife or obstetrician before taking any medications, undertaking any exercise or using products you are unfamiliar with during pregnancy.
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