The hormonal changes and physical discomforts associated with pregnancy can affect your quality of sleep.
Especially during late pregnancy, your may have trouble falling or staying asleep during the night. This can be due to discomfort associated with your growing belly, heartburn, leg cramps or sinus congestion. Also, frequent nighttime urination affects sleep quality.
A 2012 study published in the Scientific World Journal found that more than half of the 486 pregnant participants reported having insomnia. Although the sleep duration of the pregnant women was within normal standards, it was found to decrease with the increasing gestational trimester. This study identified age, depression symptoms and gestational trimester as risk factors for insomnia.
Pregnancy-related insomnia should not be taken lightly. A 2014 study published in PLOS ONE reports that insomnia during pregnancy may be a marker for postpartum depression among women with previous depression.
A 2005 study published in Acupuncture in Medicine suggests acupuncture alleviates insomnia during pregnancy.
- Develop a calm bedtime routine.
- Keep a consistent sleep schedule.
- Practice abdominal breathing and guided imagery meditation before going to bed.
- Drinking a glass of warm milk may help bring on sleep.
- Take your vitamins and eat a healthy, balanced diet.
- Avoid computers, cell phones or televisions before bed.
- Use a body pillow to help keep you comfortable throughout the night.
10. Bladder Problems
Both frequent urination and incontinence are common bladder problems faced by pregnant women.
As the pregnancy enters the last trimester, you may feel the need to urinate at frequent intervals. This happens as the baby’s head presses or rests on your bladder. Also, you may have difficulty emptying your bladder completely when urinating.
Incontinence is another common problem that can affect you during and after pregnancy. Incontinence means you are not able to prevent a sudden spurt of urine or a small leak when you cough, laugh, sneeze or move suddenly. This may be due to relaxed pelvic floor muscles.
- Drink plenty of water to dilute your urine.
- Backent incontinence by doing pelvic floor exercises.
- Don’t drink a lot of fluids in the early evening and before bedtime.
- Go to the bathroom when you feel the urge.
- When you urinate, lean forward to help the bladder empty more.