Pregnancy Insomnia: Causes, Consequences & Treatment

Sleeping problems are very common during pregnancy. In most women, insomnia begins in the first trimester of pregnancy. Pregnant women are often overwhelmed with thoughts about their new state and that keeps them up often. Sometimes pregnancy insomnia is caused y the inability to find a comfortable position. A pregnant woman may be tossing, and turning around all through the night. Later the belly starts to grow and disturbs the future mother in the second trimester. How can she sleep? To overcome insomnia during pregnancy, it is necessary to establish the causes of insomnia and eliminate them by yourself or with the help of specialists.

Later the belly starts to grow and disturbs the future mother in the second trimester. How can she sleep? To overcome insomnia during pregnancy, it is necessary to establish the causes of insomnia and eliminate them by yourself or with the help of specialists.

Causes of Pregnancy Insomnia

Hormonal changes can cause insomnia in a woman’s body even at the beginning.

For example, during pregnancy the level of progesterone and other hormones raises. Mobilizing forces for childbearing, they at the same time lead the body into a state of “alert” and sometimes simply don’t let relax. Causes for insomnia get bigger with increasing gestational age.

Physiological causes

  • Difficulty in finding a comfortable position (increased weight and belly make this process difficult)
  • Pain in the back and waist
  • Stirring of the foetus
  • Frequent nocturnal urination (increased in size uterus presses on the bladder and now it needs to be emptied more frequently)
  • Heartburn (disorders of the gastrointestinal tract in the general characteristic of pregnancy)
  • Convulsions (pregnant women often complain of leg cramps)
  • Itching in the abdomen due to the stretching of the skin
  • Shortness of breath (the increased weight makes it difficult to breathe, in addition, the uterus puts pressure on the lungs)

Psychological Causes

  • Chronic Fatigue
  • Nervous tension, stress (fear of the upcoming changes, anxiety for the child, fear of childbirth)

Any of these reasons would be enough to deprive a woman of sleep and often they are still fit!

pregnant-women-drinking water

How to Fight Insomnia?

From the tips listed below, try to choose only what suits you and what you personally like. If one recommendation doesn’t help you, try to take another one. Every situation is individual, every woman needs to choose her own method or a combination of techniques.

During the Day

  1. Avoid overexertion. Accumulated fatigue for a day does not always lead to sleeping. Sometimes it turns out that you just can’t relax after a hard day.
  2. If you are used to sleeping in the day time, try to get rid of this habit or cut the nap time and a night sleeping may recover.
  3. If you are plagued by nightmares, which you can’t forget, talk about them with someone else (husband, mother, friend) in the morning or afternoon. Psychoanalysts believe the discussions of night dreams are very effective means of overcoming the fear: firstly, the close people will try to calm you down, and it happens in the most cases. Secondly, you will find the reasons not to be afraid when you talk about it.
  4. Take your time and an opportunity to practice the simple exercises that you can do during the day. Swimming, walking, and even dancing (in the latter case, everything depends on the stage of pregnancy and your health condition) should be very useful.
  5. Your body needs to get used to the fact that the bed is a place for sleeping only: try to escape the habit to lie in while you are reading, watching TV and so on.

In the evening, start your training to ensure that the forthcoming night will be calm and peaceful about two hours before bedtime.
Experts say about sleep hygiene, which includes the following activities:

  1. Do not eat a heavy meal just before going to bed: on a full stomach, you will toss and turn until morning.
  2. Do not set for the evening the cases requiring physical and intellectual efforts.
  3. Avoid emotional stress and stressful situations at this time of the day (do not assign unpleasant conversations and stormy explanations in the evening, ask relatives and friends not to call you in the evening and do not look actions and thrillers before sleeping).
  4. Take a warm bath or shower before bedtime. You can add a decoction of chamomile or a few drops of an essential oil (eg, lavender) in the bath. It will help you relax.
  5. Try to drink less in the evening (make sure that the total fluid intake the day is 6-8 glasses). It will help you cope with the cause of insomnia, as the need for frequent emptying of the bladder.
  6. Drink a cup of warm milk (if you do not like the taste of milk, add the cinnamon, a little bit of honey or sugar) or tea from herbs before going to bed.
  7. You can eat a small sandwich with cooked turkey (meat of this bird also contains tryptophan) before going to bed.
  8. If you have a weakness, lightheadedness, your heartbeat quickens in the evening, perhaps the cause of your insomnia is hypoglycemia (low blood sugar). In this case, a sweet tea, juice or a piece of sugar (and be sure to tell your doctor about these symptoms, so that it can confirm or deny the diagnosis and take appropriate action) can help you.
  9. Spread some lotion on your belly skin before going to bed. It can prevent the occurrence of itching.
  10. Ask your husband or someone from the family to make you a massage before going to bed: you will relax, relieve back pain, the massage of the feet and ankles to prevent seizures.
  11. Some people, sex may help to sleep. If you do not have medical contraindications in sex, you feel the desire and you know that you want to sleep after sex – so why not?

What You Should Not Do

Just remember in any case: do not even try to use sleeping pills under any circumstances! Only a doctor can decide whether you may use sleeping pills during pregnancy!