Sleeping Position During Pregnancy: What Happens When You Lie On Your Back While Sleeping?

Fertility and Pregnancy

Don’t you worry about what kind of sleeping position is good for pregnant women? Or how lying down on your back affects your baby?

The correct sleeping position of the pregnant woman from the middle of pregnancy onwards is sideways with the left side/shoulder down.

In this article, we will explain in detail the reason and the influence of your sleeping position on the body. We will also introduce you to how to sleep in the right direction without difficulty.

About pregnant women’s sleeping position 

Many pregnant women are having difficulties when it comes to sleeping at night. Here is some well-detailed information that you need to remember so that you are able to sleep with comfort and ease.

Especially after mid-term, supine position becomes difficult

If you are in the mid-trimester pregnancy, many pregnant women will suffer difficulty sleeping on their backs.

The main reason is that the stomach gradually becomes bigger and the burden is heavy on the muscles around the waist supporting the big stomach.

Which sleeping style can be used before midterm pregnancy? 

So, what kind of sleeping position does not matter before the middle of pregnancy?

Basically, if your mattress is comfortable and you can rest easily in it, any position should not be a problem.

While in early pregnancy, some women are already worried that their baby will collapse if they lie down in the wrong position. But it will not matter just by sleeping because the baby is firmly protected with amniotic fluid and placenta.

As you approach midterm pregnancy, train yourself to sleep in the correct sleeping position. And think about going back to the same sleeping position when you wake up in the middle of the night.

What is the right sleeping position during pregnancy?

Many people have their varying opinions about this matter. After doing our research, we conclude the importance of the right sleeping position during pregnancy and some ways on how you can do it. Please read the details below on how you can sleep in the right way during your pregnancy. 

Why is the sleeping position important?

It is to get a good sleep.

The quality of sleep during pregnancy is particularly important, and sleep quality may be affected by the sleeping position.

For example, pregnant women have inherent low back pain. It is one of the reasons a lot of them wake up many times in the middle of the night. The wrong sleeping position may cause lower back pain.

Also, if the pregnant woman finds it difficult to breathe during sleeping, oxygen concentration in the blood may be low. Therefore, oxygen sent to the baby may be inadequate.

In other words, if you find it hard to breathe when sleeping, it may affect the baby.

The condition called supine hypotension syndrome is a symptom that causes the enlarged uterus to squeeze the veins and cause hypotension by sleeping on the back.If blood pressure drops suddenly, attention is necessary because nausea, consciousness reduction, etc. may occur.

The correct sleeping position is on your “lower left sideways” 

For pregnant women especially, sleeping is very important. The correct sleeping position during pregnancy is in a horizontal position.

If it is sideways, you can deposit the weight and size of your stomach on the bed and bedding. Then the burden on the waist can be minimized, preventing back pain.

In addition, it is good to determine which side is more comfortable – right-handed (lower right), or leftward (lower left). However it is better to sleep on the left side. If you lie on the left side, you can prevent pressing a thick vein passing the right side of the backbone. Pressure on the vein may cause hypotension as described above. During pregnancy, you must sleep with your left shoulder down.

Based on the Simms position 

There is a typical sleeping style called Simms position for pregnant women. This is the bed which was invented by a gynecologist in the United Kingdom, originally a posture taken in airway securing for patients in coma, but it was reported that it is effective also for pregnant women.

The way of Simms position

  • Lay down with the left side down
  • The left arm and the left foot are pulled back, and the right arm and the right leg are in front
  • Bend knees lightly to get comfortable and avoid feeling pain
  • If lying this light prone position is not comfortable, adjust with cushion, blanket, futon, etc.

Of course, there might be individual opinions on whether the Simms’ position is convenient or not. Let’s discuss other sleeping positions that you might find comfortable.

Find the right bed for you

In order to find a good sleeping position, it is recommended to use items that support your position.

Body pillow

When you have a pillow, sideways sleep tends to become a habit. Besides a holding pillow, if you choose a 2WAY or 3WAY contour body pillow that will assist you with breastfeeding cushions and baby’s sitting, you will be much more comfortable in your sleep.

Cushions

Even if you do not have a pillow, you can support your sideways sleeping position well with cushions. It should be very easy depending on the ingenuity such as laying it in the vicinity of the stomach when sitting sideways or positioning it between both legs/feet.

Conclusion

The correct sleeping position during pregnancy is sideways with the left side down.

A pregnant woman with a habit of lying face down or supine might find it uneasy to switch having to lie down sideways.

But as pregnant women get bigger and bigger as they approach late pregnancy, most of them cannot avoid sleep without sleeping sideways. Because lying down in the wrong position may be uncomfortable or painful, and lying up is often accompanied by stomach tension and fetal motion.

So have a relaxing sleep while being conscious of the right sleeping position and try the sims posture introduced in our article.

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