Have you had the experience of going to create your baby registry, standing in the aisle of a big box store, and feeling paralyzed by all of the choices? So have we, and we want to help you out. Welcome to our Whole Mamas Must-Have series, where we share our recommendations. Although each family’s needs vary, these products come highly recommended by our team and members of our community. Today we’re talking all things pregnancy sleep.
Pregnancy sleep can be a challenge, especially as the weeks roll on and your body changes more drastically. We polled our community on Instagram and Facebook to ask their tips for pregnancy sleep and what products they used and loved to help them catch some precious z’s.
Pillows and blankets
There are so many pregnancy pillows on the market. So, which ones do mamas love? Here are a few that our community recommended over and over. Every body is different, so if you have any friends that will let you borrow them to try out, that could be a good option before committing yourself!
- “Hiccapop wedge pillow was my saving grace! The Snoogle never worked for me. I was carrying twins during Boston winters. Snoogle was difficult to get into the blankets and change sides. – Priyanka T.
- “I’m 36 weeks with my second and a wedge pillow is all I am using these days! I always started with the U pillow when I was “cute pregnant” but as the belly gets bigger and turning gets harder, this has been a GEM.” – Leah D.
- “Both the C and U shaped pillows were too restrictive and annoying at times. I flip over a lot and having to get my arm and leg free in order to be able to flip over got old super quick. Now I use 2 wedge pillows, 1 set up on each side of belly/hip area. Here’s to restful sleeps between pees!” – Courtney L.
- “Snoogle pillow!” – Molly C.
- “Down body pillow! Can squish it to fit you.” Meredith R.
- “A weighted blanket and all the pillows. And stretching before bed.” – Kaley P
Supplements and herbs
After you get your pillow situation locked down, our mamas recommended a few products to try. Reminder to always run new supplements past your healthcare provider to ensure they are appropriate for your situation!
- Magnesium and valerian root. Valerian was magical for me*. – Esther D.
- “Using Ancient Minerals magnesium oil or Ease magnesium spray plus a bedtime epsom salt bath or hot shower really helped.” – Kristin B.
- “Natural Vitality Calm powder, a washcloth with really hot water for my nightly face wash, and staying well hydrated during the day all helped me.” – Julia
- “Epsom salt bath before bed for restless legs—terrible in pregnancy. “- Erin
- “Primally Pure everything spray before bed! Makes a noticeable difference in my sleep quality! I’m 38 weeks now and still able to get some really restful nights!” – Kristy B.
- “Unisom 😂 I haven’t had a huge problem with sleeplessness, but got the ok from my doc to take it when absolutely necessary. Half a tablet does the trick for me, and since it’s only once in a blue moon, I don’t worry about it!” – Aubrey H.
*Valerian safety: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17992658/
Meditation and other tips
- “Hypnobabies program! It’s an entire series you purchase that comes with CDs. Best sleep of my pregnancy was when I began the program in my 3rd trimester. My only wish is I would have begun listening to the mediation CDs earlier in my pregnancy. My husband would have to remove the headphones every night. Definitely a tool you want, even if you’re not planning an unmedicated birth” – Bailey G.
- “Sleepytime tea, a warm shower (helps with restless legs,) pillow between my knees, and pillows to prop my upper body up a little higher (because of heartburn and stuffy nose😖) I’m about to have baby #5 at 41, and sleep has not been good with this one🙄” – Tina S.
- “Essential oils diffusing at bedtime 🙌🏼 and guided meditations” Brittany D.
- “Don’t read any baby books before bed! It gets your mind thinking too much when it should be relaxing and going to sleep. There is plenty of time to plan during the day. Take the time to read something mindless or entertaining!” – Allison D.
Bonus, from Stephanie Greunke, RD: 7 tips to try before bed to calm down + reduce itchiness
- Add 1 cup Epsom salt + 5 drops lavender essential oil to your bath. If you prefer to shower, you can put these in your tub with the drain closed and let your feet absorb the magnesium/lavender while you shower! This can be done nightly and is safe for pregnancy and nursing.
- Immediately after your bath/shower, use a deep nourishing cream to lock in moisture and reduce nighttime itching.
- Consider leaving your phone in a different room and/or listening to a meditation from Headspace/Expectful or a book on Audible (eyes closed, in bed) to wind down. Bonus points for doing a few yoga poses/stretches like child’s pose and cat/cow.
- Consider WishGarden Herbs Sleepy Nights for Pregnancy, additional magnesium or calcium/magnesium (1:1), and chamomile tea.
- Don’t wait longer than 12 hours between dinner (post-dinner snack) and breakfast to prevent blood sugar dips and cortisol release. Have a handful of cashews or berries with full-fat coconut milk before bed, if you need a light snack.
- Aim to be in bed, ready to fall asleep by 10PM as often as possible. If you can’t fall asleep, close your eyes and listen to something to calm down instead of looking at a screen.
- If sleep issues persist, you may even want to consider light box therapy (30 minutes in the morning) to help regulate circadian rhythm.
Anything we missed? Join the conversation with us on Instagram.
The contents of this article present the research and ideas of its author(s) on advanced maternal age and was created for informational purposes only. All information, content, and material on this website is for informational purposes and not intended to serve as a substitute for the consultation, diagnosis, and/or medical treatment of a qualified physician or healthcare provider. Consult with your qualified physician or healthcare provider before starting any diet, supplement regimen, or to determine the appropriateness of the information contained herein, or if you have any questions regarding pregnancy or your prenatal treatment plan. Thirty & Co, LLC disclaims responsibility for any adverse effects resulting directly or indirectly from any information contained on this website.