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Tossing and Turning

Sleep! That wonderful time where you get to lay down, close your eyes, and enjoy a comfortable, uninterrupted, peaceful night’s sleep at the end of a long day. Unless of course, you are pregnant!

After a woman’s baby is born the advice you will probably most often hear her give is, “Sleep while you can!”, however this is really easier said than done. Most pregnant women are awakened at least once or twice during the night from the beginning of their pregnancies to a bladder that is calling and just can’t wait till morning. If they are lucky, this will slow down during the second trimester as their body adjusts to the pregnancy and the baby grows.

Unfortunately, the second trimester doesn’t last long enough! Once the third trimester comes, so does the yelling of the bladder, as well as other problems making a good nights sleep become something most pregnant women just dream of.

For the women who sleep on their stomachs or backs when not pregnant, they will find that by the third trimester they will have to find a way to get comfortable in a new position. With a big belly, there is now no way to sleep on your tummy and it gets painful to lie on your back, putting all the weight of your belly on your back. This leaves 2 choices for most women, the right side or the left side. Still getting comfortable isn’t as easy and some might think.

As the belly gets bigger, it also gets heavier. You might try to lay on your right or left side, only to discover that the baby is rolled up on that side of your belly and that he doesn’t like this position. The lack of support to your belly and heaviness of the belly might cause you to have to roll over. Then there is another problem you might encounter. While asleep, laying on one side or the other, the baby might decide to start poking and kicking you on that side waking you up, and making the comfort you finally found go away.

Some women have increased back and leg pain while pregnant which doesn’t help with the night time comfort. One solution that works for many women is easy and cheap. Pillows! You will often see pictures of pregnant women at the end of pregnancy surrounded by pillows as they lay in bed, taking up so much room that sometimes their husband looks very crowded. The most popular places for a pillow are between the knees and under the belly. The pillows help support and prop up the belly and legs so that MAYBE comfort can be found. Sometimes women will put on behind their back as well. Some pregnant women will make use of body pillows during the last weeks of their pregnancy to give their whole body extra support.

Tossing and turning is a sure sign that the end of pregnancy is near. Between the frequent bathroom trips, the comfort level (or lack thereof), and the constant thoughts, questions and worries running through a woman’s head, you might as well give up the idea of an uninterrupted, peaceful nights sleep for at least the next several months.

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