A recent study shows that women are much more likely to experience insomnia than men. For the pregnant woman, it’s even more common.
In fact, some studies estimate that as many as 78 percent of pregnant women will experience some degree or another of sleep interruption during pregnancy. Further complicating this is the fact that there are some sleep medications that just aren’t safe to take while you’re pregnant.
Why Do I Have Sleep Problems During Pregnancy?
Insomnia, in the most basic sense, is having inadequate sleep or sleep of poor quality. During pregnancy, there are several things that can cause it. One of the most common reasons for insomnia is simple discomfort. It could be discomfort because your belly is getting bigger, or it could be a result of back pain or heart burn.
Other bodily changes can play a role, too. You might get up frequently during the night to pee. You might have hormonal changes that keep you up. You might have vivid dreams, brought on by hormonal changes or stress.
Anxiety is another common cause for insomnia during pregnancy. In addition to a general feeling of anxiety, you might also be anxious for the arrival of your baby, especially in the last trimester of your pregnancy.
What Can I Do About it?
No, you can’t take Ambien during pregnancy (unless your health care provider recommends it, and that’s not especially likely). However, there are some things you can do to improve your chance of sleep and your quality of sleep.
For example, you can create a comfortable sleep environment. You can set the room up by changing the thermostat to a comfortable temp. You can play some relaxing music or some natural sounds on a CD player, as well. You can take a warm bath before bed, or you can get a massage at night.
You can do other things, too. You might try sleeping in a different position. You might use the relaxation techniques you’ve learned in your childbirth class. Reading a book or drinking a glass of warm milk might help, too.
If you have severe insomnia during pregnancy, it can negatively affect your mood and your health. Make sure to talk to your doctor if that’s the case.