Pregnancy is a beautiful experience, but it does come with some body changes that can interrupt daily life, including sleep. Sleeping while pregnant can be hard at best and if you don't have the right lumbar support, it can be even harder. But don't worry, there are things you can do to help you get a good nights sleep whilst pregnant. So, if you're trying to catch up on those much needed zzz's before the baby arrives, this guide is for you. We'll cover everything you need to know about sleeping whilst pregnant. Including what are the best mattresses for pregnancy and tips on how to sleep better tailored to your trimester.
Do you need a different mattress whilst pregnant?
Whether or not you need a new mattress will depend on how your current one feels. If it's already due for an upgrade, now is the perfect time. However, if you're sleeping comfortably and feel properly supported, there's no need to upgrade for the sake of it. If you find yourself tossing and turning, unable to settle down for the night, that could be a sign you need to shake up your sleep environment. But this doesn't always mean getting a completely new mattress. Many pregnant women who liked their mattress pre-pregnancy but currently need some extra support opt for a memory foam mattress topper. Toppers are the perfect way to add a bit of extra support and cushioning to a mattress without replacing.
What are the best mattresses for pregnancy?
If you've decided it's definitely time to replace your mattress, memory foam mattresses are perfect for pregnancy and will still be comfortable when the baby arrives. This is because memory foam is great for equal weight distribution. Meaning there won't be too much pressure on one spot of the body, including joints. Since we tend to sleep on our side when pregnant, it can put a lot of pressure on the shoulder and hip joints. Sleeping on a weight receptive surface like memory foam will give you support where you need it and cushion everywhere else.
Choosing a mattress that will properly support your back is especially important during pregnancy. When you're pregnant, your centre of gravity shifts to stop you from falling forward. This causes your body to arch backwards, which puts a lot of extra strain on the back muscles. Memory foam is perfect for relieving pressure in the muscles, allowing them to fully relax, while still giving you the back support you need. If you're unsure on what firmness to choose, opt for medium-firm. Medium-firm gives great support without the body sinking in too much. Sinking in too far can be quite bothersome when heavily pregnant and getting out of bed.
What is the best mattress topper for pregnancy?
If you don't need a new mattress but would like some extra support or softness, mattress toppers are the perfect option. They're available in a few different materials including memory foam, which is ideal for pregnancies. Because of its ability to offer unique support depending on the weight placed on it, it's perfect for after the pregnancy and couples too. When shopping for a mattress topper, look for one that's around two to three inches thick. This thickness will give you the comfort of the memory foam whilst keeping all the charms and benefits of your current mattress.
How to sleep better whilst pregnant:
The body changes so much during pregnancy and each trimester comes with its own individual sleep difficulties. We've put together these pregnancy sleep tips tailored to your trimester:
The first trimester usually comes with extreme tiredness. Because the body is making so many new changes, it takes a lot of extra energy. To combat this, it's important to make sure you're well-rested. This usually means adding a planned nap throughout the day (if you can) and making sure you're getting more sleep than usual at night. Many women prefer to sleep on their side during pregnancy but if you're a front sleeper, make the most of it while you still can! During this trimester you'll probably find yourself needing to pee more frequently, especially at night. Make sure to drink all your recommended daily fluids and but to stop drinking a few hours before bedtime. This will give your body a chance to process all the fluid while you're still awake and stop you from getting up to use the bathroom during the night.
By the second trimester, your body has likely adjusted to the idea of being pregnant and you're probably feeling more energetic than you did. During the second trimester, common sleep disruptions include heartburn, leg cramps and vivid dreaming. All of these can reap havoc on your nightly rest and make you feel tired during the day again. Eating lighter meals later in the day can help reduce these symptoms and help you get some well deserved zzz's. By this stage in the pregnancy, you're also probably starting to feel the effects of the extra pressure put on your back. Sleeping on a softer, yet supportive surface can help reduce this. Memory foam is a great mattress for pregnancies. You can opt for a complete memory foam mattress, a pillow top mattress or add a memory foam topper to your existing style to reduce pressure on your back.
By this stage in the pregnancy, you'll certainly be feeling to effects of the extra weight from the baby on your spine. Sleeping on your left side with a pillow between your legs, behind your back and under your stomach can help alleviate the added pressure and make it easier to get out of bed. In the third trimester, it's likely that you'll be waking up multiple times a night from the baby moving and you should be awarding yourself with a lay-in because of it. Don't worry about losing sleep at night and try to make up for it when you can throughout the day.