How to sleep with a pregnancy pillow is a fundamental question for any pregnant woman.
Are you pregnant and tired? Are you struggling to get a good night's sleep as your body changes?
You are not the only one. According to the National Sleep Foundation, 78% of women experience trouble sleeping throughout their pregnancy. So what should a mom-to-be do to sleep properly?
One of the simplest and most popular solutions to this problem is a pregnancy pillow. They are not only designed for help pregnant women sleep, but also to remedy some common and uncomfortable aches and pains.
However, not all pregnancy pillows are created equal. Which is the best? How can you make this miracle invention work for you?
How to sleep with a pregnancy pillow: Why pregnancy makes it hard to sleep
Pregnancy is a time of big changes in every woman's body - and some of these changes make falling asleep - or sleeping - more difficult.
As with most pregnancy issues, hormones play a role in altering your sleep patterns. Higher levels of progesterone can cause daytime sleepiness, while other hormones can lead to strange and unusual dreams, or tighten your muscles leading to snoring and discomfort at night.
Hormones can also cause heartburn, painful burning in the chest and esophagus. Heartburn is also known to keep moms pregnant at night.
Later in pregnancy, heartburn can also be caused by your baby's growth which presses against the stomach, pushing digestive acids into the esophagus.
Pregnancy is also stressful! Many moms find it hard to shut down their thoughts of worry and anxiety about the arrival of their baby. What will the job look like? What if something goes wrong? Do I have everything I need? We know from experience that these thoughts can keep a mother on her feet for hours.
It's essential to remember that a healthy sleep routine is crucial for your health and that of your growing baby. Sleep should be a priority - even if it seems impossible.
This is where pregnancy pillows come in. The best pregnancy pillow can be a great asset when you work on finding your way back to sleep.
Types Of Pregnancy Pillows
If you've ever searched online for a pregnancy pillow, you've probably found a wide variety available online. They are available in all shapes and sizes.
The best way to determine which pregnancy pillow is best for your needs is to take a look at the different styles and their attributes. In a general way, there are five types of pregnancy pillows.
1. Full Length Pregnancy Pillow
Full-length pregnancy pillows are a great option if you're looking to support specific problem areas such as your head, stomach, and knees. They are simply extra long and straight pillows that you are hug while sleeping.
Clarification: Full-length pregnancy pillows are sometimes simply called "body pillows" because they are also used by people who are not pregnant. Don't confuse a body pillow with a full body pillow.
2. Full C-Shaped Pregnancy Pillow
This is a full body pregnancy pillow is designed to support your entire body as it changes during pregnancy. Pregnancy pillows are C-shaped.
3. Full U-Shaped Pregnancy Pillow
If you're a side sleeper, the U-shaped pregnancy pillow might be your best bet for getting a good night's sleep. Think of a pillow that looks like a large horseshoe, stuffed with comfy stuffing, and you've got an overall dice.
U-shaped pregnancy pillows are great as side sleepers can straddle one side of pillow and have stomach supported, head leaning on the curve. Women who like to sleep on their backs can also benefit from this form of pillow.
4. Inflatable Pregnancy Pillows
Sleeping on your stomach becomes more and more impossible as your belly grows. Many women experience discomfort in their range of motion - and the sudden inability to sleep in their preferred position.
Inflatable pregnancy pillows are the answer!
They're puffy, almost like a separate mattress above your bed. They are equipped with a comfortable hole, so your belly will be cradled while you lie on your stomach.
5. Pregnancy Wedges
Pregnancy wedges aren't technically pillows, but they're inexpensive and good for target specific areas of the body who need a little accessory to be comfortable.
The wedge, usually triangular in shape, slips easily under the area that needs support - many women like to use them for their growing bellies while they sleep.
Uses of Pregnancy Pillows
Using Full Length Pregnancy Pillows
A complete pregnancy pillow may be right for you if:
- You sleep on your side
- You don't move much during sleep
- You have extra space on your bed
To sleep with a full-length pregnancy pillow, place the pillow on your bed and wrap your arms around it. Pull the pillow close to you and find a comfortable position. Full length pregnancy pillows are available in two different styles, straight and flexible.
If you sleep in more unique acrobatic positions, opt for the full-length flexible pillow. Full-length straight pillows are rigid and cannot be shaped to your specific position.
Using C Shaped Pregnancy Pillows
A C-shaped pregnancy pillow may be right for you if:
- You have back pain
- You want full body support
- You don't toss and turn
- You have extra space on your bed
To sleep with a C-shaped pregnancy pillow, place the pillow on the bed and spread out the shape so you can easily climb on it.
Place the curve of the "c" towards your back. Pull the top of the pillow towards your head and place the bottom of the pillow between your thighs. The solid bottom of the pillow should reach your belly, which is then supported by the pillow.
Make sure you don't let the pillow ride too high on your thighs. It should be perfectly centered between your knees and your hips. This will allow both to get the support they need.
Using U Shaped Pregnancy Pillows
A U-shaped pregnancy pillow may be right for you if:
- You toss and turn at night.
- You like to sleep on your side or on your back.
- Looking for full body support.
- You have extra space on your bed.
Similar to a C-shaped pregnancy pillow, a U-shaped pillow is designed to ease the transition from side to side. You straddle one side of the pillow. To change sides, just turn around.
U-shaped pregnancy pillows are also great for pregnant women who sleep on their backs as they provide support on both sides. Women can snuggle in the middle and get back, neck and head support.
Using Inflatable Pregnancy Pillows
An inflatable pregnancy pillow may be right for you if:
- You are in your third trimester.
- You like to sleep on your stomach.
- You want to adjust your support level.
It takes a little extra work to sleep with an inflatable pregnancy pillow, but it's a great option. if you slept on your stomach before pregnancy.
Inflatable pregnancy pillows are made of materials similar to an air mattress. They usually come with a pump included, which makes them easy to install. Simply use the included pump to inflate the pillow to a level that's comfortable for you.
Once the pillow is inflated, place it gently on it, placing your baby bump in the hole provided. Depending on the material of your pillow, you can place a towel or blanket on it for extra comfort.
Use of a pregnancy wedge
A pregnancy corner may be right for you if:
- You need localized support.
- You have a small budget.
- You don't have a lot of extra room in the bed.
- You are looking for versatility.
A pregnancy wedge is a great, inexpensive option for mothers with sleep issues. There are two different shapes of corners: circles and triangles. Using a pregnancy wedge is simple: just place the wedge under the area where you need support and rest easy.
A pregnancy corner is great for travel and support on the go! Find a small one to keep in your car and/or for travel.
What's your favorite pillow shape?
Pregnancy pillows come in all shapes and sizes, each with benefits for different sleepers. Side sleepers benefit from C-shapes, side and back sleepers enjoy U-shapes, and stomach sleepers should lean into inflatable pregnancy pillows.
Sleeping wedges are the space-saving and affordable option for everyone!
You now know how to sleep with a pregnancy pillow!