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How to Overcome 9 Sleep Problems for Pregnant Women

The difficulty to sleep soundly is often experienced by pregnant women. When pregnant, women face major physical and emotional changes that ultimately affect sleep quality. But you are not alone, most pregnant women usually experience insomnia and other sleep problems.

In the first trimester, sleep difficulties can be caused by the need to urinate frequently at night, as well as physical and emotional stress associated with pregnancy. Furthermore, in the second trimester, sleep problems will improve, but this physical and emotional stress is actually still a scourge that reduces sleep quality. In the third trimester, the problem of sleep becomes more severe because the causes increase in complexity, starting from discomfort with an enlarged stomach, heartburn, leg cramps, stuffy breath, and frequent urination.

Here are some problems that interfere with pregnant women sleep and ways to overcome them.

How to Overcome 9 Sleep Problems for Pregnant Women

Leg cramps

Leg cramps can interfere with sleep for pregnant women. Pregnant women with low calcium and magnesium levels can experience this condition. Plus, the growing fetus needs a lot of calcium and will take it from the body of the mother so that it makes the mother more likely to experience leg cramps. Try opponents of leg cramps this way:

  • Sufficient for calcium and magnesium for Mother. Consult your obstetrician or midwife about the need for calcium and magnesium for the mother, including the need to take calcium supplements. You can also eat magnesium-rich foods, such as dairy products, almonds, and peas.
  • Bend the cramped leg towards your body to deal with leg cramps that often come suddenly.
  • Frequently do light muscle stretches. Better yet, start getting used to doing light exercise, such as walking, regularly.

Back pain

In the second and third trimesters of pregnancy, back pain is considered normal and of course, makes sleep uncomfortable. This occurs when weakening of the ligaments or connective tissue that binds bones to the joints. The reason is that the baby enlarges and releases the hormone relaxin during pregnancy.

How to fight back pain in order to sleep well is to sleep sideways to the left. This position increases blood flow and oxygen to the uterus and fetus. Using a pillow to prop one side of your back can also help maintain a sleeping position sideways comfortably. You can also use a special pillow for pregnant women in the form of letters "C" or the letter "U".

Restless Legs Syndrome

This syndrome is generally experienced by some pregnant women in the third trimester of pregnancy. Restless leg syndrome is characterized by an unpleasant sensation in the foot, resembling throbbing aches, pain due to attraction, or tingling, thus making the mother unable to move her legs to repel discomfort. Usually, this symptom is burdensome in the afternoon or evening and eventually causes the Mother to be unable to sleep calmly. The way to fight this condition is to ensure adequate folic acid and iron. You can take supplements of folic acid and iron in doctor-recommended doses and not excessive to avoid the dangers that can arise due to excess folic acid. Also, avoid consuming caffeine, nicotine and alcoholic beverages. Don't forget to regularly walk or do light stretches too.

Nasal congestion Conditions that reduce sleep comfort are caused by a combination of factors that increase blood volume with increased mucus factors due to an increase in the hormone estrogen which is both related to pregnancy.

The way to fight it is to raise the head position using a pile of pillows. Bathing in warm water before going to bed can also help sleep feel more comfortable without being disturbed by clogged breath. Also, avoid spicy foods and caffeinated drinks that can worsen this problem.


The condition of morning sickness or nausea and vomiting in pregnant women generally occurs in the first trimester. Even though it's called morning sickness, it can happen at any time, including at nighttime sleep.

The way to fight it is to eat tasteless snacks, such as rice biscuits, to prevent an empty stomach and nausea. You can also drink ginger tea to relieve nausea.

Heartburn and indigestion

Again because of hormonal factors, you can experience heartburn and digestive disorders that can cause bloating. The pregnancy hormone will cause the work of the digestive tract muscles to slow down. In addition, work from the muscles of the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) will weaken so that stomach acid leaks and enters the esophagus.

How to fight it can be done by:

  • Elevate the position of the mother's head while sleeping by propping up using several pillows.
  • Eat small portions, but often. This step is better than eating three large meals a day. Besides that, eat slowly.
  • Avoid fried foods, spicy foods, and citrus fruits.
  • Don't lie down immediately after eating.

Frequent urination

The uterus that suppresses the bladder coupled with the increased production of the hormone progesterone makes pregnant women urinate frequently, even during sleep. The fix, avoid drinking water two hours before going to bed and drink more water during the day. Also, try to urinate before going to bed.

Sleep apnea

Sleep apnea is a sleep disorder characterized by breathing that stops occasionally. This breathing is disrupted because the throat wall relaxes and narrows while sleeping. Sleep apnea is a major cause of high blood pressure and diabetes during pregnancy. To overcome this, need help from a doctor. Consult your doctor so you get treatment to help lower blood pressure and stabilize blood sugar levels.


Don't worry too much, insomnia is a common condition experienced by pregnant women. Many pregnant women find it difficult to sleep, let alone sleep.

How to overcome it:

  • Build a routine that provides calm before going to sleep and establish a fixed sleep schedule. A soothing routine includes a warm bath, listening to soft music, or asking your partner to massage your feet.
  • Stay away from cell phones as well as electronic use, such as computers or televisions, before bedtime.
  • Avoid consuming caffeine afternoon.
  • If you have tried to sleep for 20-30 minutes, but you still can't sleep, wake up and move to another room. You can listen to music or read magazines until you get sleepy, then go back to bed. No need to worry if you can't sleep. Restlessness only makes the problem worse.

If the case of insomnia that you experience continues, do not hesitate to consult a doctor because insomnia is left alone, especially during the third trimester, can be associated with the emergence of postpartum depression.

In general, whatever causes of your sleep problems, exercise and relaxation techniques can help improve sleep quality and support your physical and mental health. Perform relaxation techniques such as yoga, massage, breathing techniques, and stretching the body. In addition, food and drinks can also have an impact on the quality of sleep, for example drinking warm milk before bed is believed to be able to help you sleep well. Many experts believe that the amino acid content of L-tryptophan in milk can support sleep well. You can also eat high-protein snacks, such as peanut butter at night if your blood sugar levels are low. The condition of low blood sugar levels at night is characterized by sweating throughout the body, headaches, and nightmares that interfere with sleep.
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