Sleep During Your Second Trimester

This content was created by the National Sleep Foundation


How to deal with pregnancy changes so you can rest easy

The second trimester is like the honeymoon phase of your pregnancy, where the morning sickness from the first trimester has (hopefully!) eased up, and you’re not as big or as uncomfortable as you will be during your third trimester. This makes it a great time to catch some zzz’s by practicing smart sleep hygiene habits‚  such as going to bed and waking up at the same time every day, and starting a relaxing bedtime routine to help you wind down, such as listening to calming music.Below, find out what you need to know about sleep during your second trimester:

Ease Your Aching Back. The extra weight that you’ve gained can put added pressure on your back or belly.So if you’re a back or stomach sleeper, you won’t be for long! Now is the time to get into the groove of sleeping on your side—specifically your left side to boost blood and nutrient supply to your baby. Try to put a pillow between your knees to help align your spine. You may need to place another pillow under your belly for support as it grows.

Halt a Headache. Headaches are totally common during pregnancy, and may block you from being able to doze off easily. That can be frustrating, since getting enough sleep can help soothe your headache. First, try relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, and then apply a damp, warm washcloth to your forehead or the base of your skull. If that doesn't work, an over-the-counter medication might. While aspirin and ibuprofen shouldn’t be taken during pregnancy, ask your doctor if it's safe for you to take acetaminophen.

Doze Back Off After Vivid Dreams. During pregnancy, weird dreams are common. It may be your unconsciousness’ way of dealing with all the changes in your body. Returning to dreamland after a bizarre dream can be tough, so try keeping a dream journal by your bed. If you’re awoken by a dream, write it down in detail. This will help your mind release the dream and allow you to doze off again more easily.

Prevent Leg Cramps. Those painful Charlie horses often strike at night, waking you from a deep sleep. To prevent them, stretch your calf muscles before bed, and make sure that you drink plenty of fluids. Being low on magnesium may also trigger leg cramps, so be certain that you’re eating foods that are packed with the nutrient, such as whole grains, beans, nuts, and seeds.

To learn about sleeping tips for your third trimester.