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Sleep during pregnancy: First Trimester

By Debra Aspinall Subscribe to RSS | June 7th 2012 | Views:
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In the first trimester your body will be getting used to the influx of pregnancy hormones and you may feel exhausted much of the day, but are unable to sleep well at night. There are several possible causes for this:

Hormones and anxiety

As well as the effect of the hormones you could be feeling excited, worried and have all sorts of questions running through your mind which are interfering with your sleep during pregnancy.

Will my baby be healthy? Will I cope? Will my body ever be the same again?

If these anxieties are interfering with your sleep during pregnancy talk them through with your partner, your mum or a friend. Try to do some relaxing techniques before bed time, take a warm bath, do some deep breathing and listen to soothing music. Don’t watch TV late at night and avoid stimulants like caffeine.

Snoring

Increased blood flow during pregnancy causes everything to swell, including your nasal passages so you may be snoring more, even in the first trimester.

Later in the pregnancy any excessive weight gain could aggravate this and make the snoring even worse to the point you frequently wake yourself up.

The breathing strips worn across the nose to open up the nasal passages help some people. Using a humidifier, using saline nose drops or inhaling steam may also help.

Hot and bothered

Increased progesterone levels will give you hot flushes and interfere with sleep during pregnancy. Surrounding yourself in comfy, supporting pillows may compound the problem. Wear breathable cotton nightwear and use a light blanket instead of a duvet. Sleep with the window open when weather permits.

Heartburn

Even in the first trimester your changing body and growing uterus can cause stomach acids to back up into the oesophagus causing uncomfortable heartburn at night and interfering with your sleep during pregnancy.

Avoid eating a heavy meal for three hours before bed and cut down on spicy, fried and acidic foods, including tomatoes, orange juice and coffee.

Ask your GP before taking any antacids.

Peeing

Pregnant women need to pee more often because the growing uterus puts pressure on the bladder, reducing its capacity. They are (or should be) drinking more water too!

If these night-time bathroom visits are spoiling your sleep during pregnancy try to reduce your liquid intake after 5pm and don’t drink anything at all in the two hours before going to bed.

Restless legs

Some pregnant women get a strange restless sensation in their legs making them jerk while asleep and often waking them up. Worse than this is the painful cramp which can strike in the feet or calves.

Some people say increasing calcium in the diet helps, but there’s no medical proof of this. Try some light stretching (flexing your foot rather than pointing your toes) during the day and get your partner to give you leg massages!

Debra Aspinall - About Author:
Debra Aspinall is an experienced journalist and the editor and leading writer for the Emma’s Diary website, one of the UKs foremost pregnancy and baby websites. She writes on trimesters of pregnancy, first trimester pregnancy, second trimester pregnancy and etc. If you are searching for free baby stuff, please visit us at Emmasdiary.co.uk.

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