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Get your snooze on with the best sleep positions for late pregnancy

Javeria Adenwalla

Javeria Adenwalla

Javeria is a writer, a yogi and an absolute lover of life. She reports live from the trenches of motherhood, stepping on metaphoric landmines, and sharing her experiences with unwavering optimism as she raises her three musketeers. Whenever life throws her off balance, she swivels back to zen mode with the power of yoga. When she’s not busy mastering the art of parenting,...
Created on Oct 30, 2023 · 5 mins read
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Picture this: you’re waddling through the magical journey of late pregnancy, eagerly awaiting the grand debut of your tiny human while battling a battalion of discomforts that could give any superhero a run for their money. Amidst this rollercoaster ride of emotions and expanding bellies, there’s one quest that unites us all—finding that elusive oasis of slumber.


Yep, I’ve been there too, and I’m excited to share my firsthand wisdom on unlocking the secrets that will revolutionise your sleep experience during that final stage of pregnancy.  Therefore, this article will reveal the secrets to attaining a celestial level of comfort and snatching that coveted Zzzs, especially during late pregnancy.

The first position we’ll delve into is side sleeping, which has emerged as the undefeated champion among late-pregnancy sleep positions.

Side sleeping: The ultimate champion


When you sleep on your side, specifically the left side, you facilitate optimal blood circulation to you and your precious cargo. This position helps reduce the pressure on your back, kidneys, and liver, ensuring a more comfortable and restful slumber.

Now, let’s talk about the importance of pillows as your ultimate sleep companions during late pregnancy.


Pillow power: Your sleep companion 


During late pregnancy, pillows become your new best friend (sorry, partner!). They offer the support and comfort your body craves, helping you find that perfect sleep position.  My first rodeo with pregnancy, I made a rookie mistake thinking I could achieve the same level of comfort by pairing up a couple of regular pillows. Oh, what a wild goose chase that was! Let’s just say my DIY pillow concoction was like a mediocre magic trick—it had some tricks up its sleeve but failed to pull off the grand finale of true comfort.

In the next baby-making adventure, I decided to take a chance on the real deal. From the moment I embraced my pregnancy pillow, it was like finding a long-lost friend. Its specialised design cradled my growing belly, supported my back, and even provided a cozy spot for my restless legs. I discovered the joy of sinking into its heavenly softness, finding respite from the discomforts that had plagued my sleepless nights. So, my friend, I would heavily suggest investing in one.

Here’s how you can put them to use:

  1. Hug that pregnancy pillow: I can’t stress enough to invest in a pregnancy pillow specially designed to provide support to your growing belly, back, and hips. Snuggling up with this fluffy wonder will make you feel like you’re drifting on clouds.
  1. Prop it up: If you’re experiencing lower back pain, try placing a pillow under your belly and another one between your legs. This will alleviate the strain on your back and promote better alignment of your spine.
  1. Stack ’em up: For additional comfort, build a cozy fortress of pillows behind your back. This will prevent you from rolling onto your back while you snooze, which can lead to discomfort and reduced blood flow.

Embrace gravity: The incline advantage 


If heartburn or acid reflux has become your unwelcome companions during late pregnancy, a little help from gravity might do the trick. Elevating your upper body slightly with the help of pillows can reduce the discomfort caused by these pesky symptoms.

What positions should be avoided in late pregnancy?


In the late stages of pregnancy, sleeping on your back is a no-go zone. This position can place pressure on a major vein called the vena cava, which hampers blood flow to the uterus and baby. It may also trigger problems like dizziness, shortness of breath, and heartburn. So, let’s wave goodbye to back sleeping and bid it farewell until after your little one arrives.

How many hours of sleep does a pregnant woman need in third trimester?


As your body works tirelessly to nurture and grow your baby, it’s crucial to prioritise sleep. In the third trimester, it’s generally recommended that pregnant women aim for 7-9 hours of sleep per night. However, every pregnancy is unique, and individual sleep needs can vary. Listen to your body and adjust your sleep duration accordingly.

How can I sleep better at the end of my pregnancy?


Here are some tips to help you sleep better at the end of your pregnancy:

1. Establish a bedtime routine:


Engage in relaxing activities before bed, such as reading a book, taking a warm bath, or listening to soothing music. These rituals can signal to your body that it’s time to wind down and prepare for sleep.

2. Create a cozy environment:


Make your sleep space as comfortable as possible. Invest in a supportive mattress and use soft, breathable bedding. Dim the lights, reduce noise, and ensure the room temperature is cool but not cold.

3. Stay hydrated, but not too much:


Drink plenty of fluids during the day to stay hydrated, but try to reduce your intake in the evening to minimise nighttime bathroom trips.

4. Limit stimulants:


Avoid consuming caffeine or spicy foods close to bedtime, as they can interfere with sleep quality. Opt for herbal teas or warm milk instead.

As your due date draws near, finding the best sleep positions in late pregnancy becomes crucial for a well-rested and rejuvenated you. Side sleeping takes the crown as the most beneficial position, promoting optimal blood circulation and reducing discomfort.

During late pregnancy, your body will be your biggest advocate, guiding you toward positions that provide relief and comfort. Pay attention to the signals it sends and adjust your sleep positions accordingly. Experiment with different angles, pillow arrangements, and variations of side sleeping to find what works best for you. Remember, your body knows what it needs, so tune in and let it lead the way.


Related Articles

20 tips to help you sleep during pregnancy
The safest sleep positions during pregnancy
How to be well prepared in the last trimester of pregnancy – it can be done!

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