Heartburn, indigestion and stress keeping you up at night? Trust these sleep-inducing tips to help you catch some blissful slumber.
If you thought sleepless nights were reserved for life after childbirth, pregnancy may come as a charming surprise. From your baby somersaulting up a storm in your belly to your bladder bailing on you every few minutes, it may seem almost impossible to catch a break and get an uninterrupted night of peaceful zzz’s when you’re pregnant. If you’re looking for ways to call a truce between your belly and your bed, rely on these sleeping tips to make it happen.
Tip 1. Chug, Chug, Chug
It’s important to keep yourself hydrated throughout pregnancy, but make sure to drink up those fluids during the day and minimise your intake before bedtime. This way, you’ll find yourself taking fewer trips to the loo at night and save your bladder some overtime.
Tip 2. Stay Active
How much activity are you getting during the day? Squeezing in a bit of exercise can enhance circulation and save you from nighttime leg cramps. Also, after burning energy during the day, your body will need all the rest it can get at night, allowing you to sleep better and longer. Make sure not to exercise too close to bedtime, as all that extra adrenaline can keep you pumping long after you’ve finished working up a sweat.
Tip 3. Bust Stress
Baby or not, stress is a surefire way to keep you up at night. Seek out ways to reduce your stress and anxiety during pregnancy. Meditate, exercise, read a book or talk to a friend. Find an outlet that eases your mind and calms your nerves.
Tip 4. Set Up a Bedtime Routine
A consistent routine can be a relaxing way to unwind after a long day, lulling you into a deep and blissful slumber. Try rounding off your day with an indulgent bath, a nice book or a cup of warm milk. Or embrace anything else that comforts you.
Tip 5. Create a Pillow Palace
Pillows are a pregnant girl’s best friend, didn’t you know? Getting comfy in bed can take some trial and error during pregnancy and pillows can be your bridge to a good night’s sleep. After you cross the 20-week mark, your doctor may advise you to sleep on your left side, to maximise blood flow to your baby, your uterus and your kidneys. And while that may be great for your health, it may not be for your comfort. Try sliding a pillow under your knee and another under your belly to give yourself a thrust as you lay on your side.
Tip 6. Bid Farewell to Heartburn
By going to bed within an hour or two of dinner, you’re inviting heartburn to keep you up at night. Maintain a gap between dinner and bedtime, and if you still find heartburn haunting you, use pillows to elevate your head. Also, keep spicy, fried and acidic foods off your plate as these could aggravate symptoms.
Take 7. Grab an Afternoon Catnap
If a full night’s sleep seems like a Herculean feat, catch up on lost slumber with afternoon catnaps. Restrict these to half an hour at the most; anything longer could have you feeling more fatigued than you started out. If you work through the week, try using part of your lunch break for a quick 15-minute power nap at your desk.
By seeking out ways to maximise your sleep, you can stay refreshed and recharged for what’s on the other side of the finish line. When better to start than now?