Sleep During Your Third Trimester

This content was created by the National Sleep Foundation


Get the best sleep possible at the end of your pregnancy

You may have thought that trying to get enough sleep during your first trimester was rough, but, unfortunately, the third trimester is even tougher. The quality of your sleep is generally the worst in the third trimester, since that's when you're most likely to wake up frequently during the night and have fewer periods of deep sleep. But don't worry, because there are some simple ways to get sounder slumber.

Q: Why Can’t I Get Comfortable in Bed?

A: Blame your belly: At this stage, it’s too large to let you lie down cozily. Make sleeping as pleasant as possible by lying on your side—the left is best for blood flow—with pillows between your legs and another behind your back for extra support. If that doesn’t help, a comfy recliner can be a good option, since you may snooze more soundly propped up.

Q: How Can I Avoid Heartburn at Night?

A: It’s common to suffer from evening heartburn in the last stage of pregnancy, but you can ward it off by eating smaller portions, as well as chewing slowly and thoroughly. Be sure to avoid fatty, spicy, carbonated, and acidic foods, since they all trigger heartburn.

Q: Why Do I keep Running to the Bathroom All Night?

A: A bigger belly puts more pressure on your bladder. But you can reduce those midnight potty breaks by cutting back on fluids in the late afternoon and evening. And be sure to completely empty your bladder every time you use the toilet by leaning forward when you urinate.

 Q: Does Not Getting Enough Sleep Hurt my Baby?

A: Even though you’ll feel exhausted, your baby will be fine. Not getting enough sleep in the final weeks of pregnancy is very common. However, it can lead to a longer labor and increase your odds of delivering via caesarean section. If you can’t get enough winks at night, catch up on sleep during the day by napping.

Q: What Should I Wear to Bed?

A: To be as comfy as possible, stay away from pajamas that put pressure on your baby bump. Skip anything with a tight waistband—look for low-fitting underwear and a loose bra if you need the support.