I love sleep. Prior to getting pregnant I could sleep round the clock and in any situation. Since then, now in my third trimester (as I write this) I've had good and bad night's sleep and I'm determined that the bad night's don't become a regular feature (at least not until baby Monk arrives!). Whenever I don't sleep well I refer back to some basics and my to do list of what helps to ensure a well-rested night's sleep. I thought I'd share in case there are any other ladies out there struggling with this too!:
getting a good Night's sleep in 7 easy steps!
- Lots of pillows! From early on in the pregnancy, I progressed from 1 pillow to now 3! I use 2 to support my head and upper body and 1 which I position between my knees to help with achy hips. This pillow on Amazon is on my wishlist for next pay day and I'm hoping it will help as my bump gets bigger and for nursing and recovery after birth.
- I love baths and have completely replaced showers with an evening bath routine. I try not to have the water too hot as it aggravates my rosacea and have found this bath cream from Sanex really helps my dry skin.
- Warm milk and nut butter on toast is supposed to provide trytophan (a natural amino acid that helps sleep). I've not always been the best at remembering this, but hoping a small mug of almond milk cocoa and cashew butter on toast in the evenings will help. (Substituting cashew butter for peanut butter as advised against peanuts during pregnancy). I also often forget to take my Pregnacare vitamins until the evening, so a snack and stomach lining will help me to digest them better too.
- Ventilate your room. During the second trimester, I've been plagued by hot flashes and an aversion to the central heating which is kind of crazy for the middle of winter. Ensuring that our bedroom gets a little bit of fresh air everyday makes everything feel fresher!
- Get some exercise in the daylight - Ok, so this is really hard in winter especially if you work full-time and you feel like a vampire rarely seeing daylight! However, if my sleep has started to suffer, it usually means I haven't got my daily does of fresh air and sunlight. I'm determined to get back to my daily lunchtime walk habit through the later stages of pregnancy.
- Read before bed - It's really tempting to sit scrolling on your phone before bed, but this doesn't help if you're trying to switch off. Over the Christmas break I got back into reading and it made a massive difference to how relaxed I felt at bedtime. I try to mix up fiction and no-fiction reading for a nice balance and am currently reading The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood.
- Create a bedtime playlist - I'm a big fan of Spotify and love creating my own playlists for different seasons and times of the day. I came across this bedtime playlist and whilst not every track is a fave, it's a good starting point for creating my own.
So these are my 7 top tips for getting a good night's sleep when pregnancy plays havoc with your circadian rhythm. 1 top tip for every night of the week! I feel like I should print the list out and stick it by my bed as a reminder.
Wishing you peaceful slumber! M x