Pregnancy sleep aids

Whether you're making nightly first trimester bathroom sprints, or dealing with the discomfort that a third trimester belly brings, getting enough sleep during pregnancy is no walk in the park. Luckily, there are some techniques that can help you (and Baby) get a better night's sleep.

Pregnancy pillows

No matter what stage of pregnancy you're in, there's bound to be a pregnancy pillow out there that suits your sleep needs. Some women can benefit simply by placing a pillow between their legs as they sleep, while others may want to opt for a specially-designed pregnancy pillow. These pillows can be as tall as you, or smaller ones that act as props for your belly and body, but the goal is the same: providing you with the most support possible to help you find a comfortable position in which to get your ZZZs.


If your sleep difficulty stems more from heartburn or frequent urination than from trouble finding a comfortable position in which to sleep, you may benefit from a simple change in your food and drink. Women who are disrupted by heartburn should take care to avoid eating fatty, processed foods, and from eating later in the evening at all. Drinking lots of water right before bed is also likely to make you have to pee more at night, so it might be a good idea to lay off the excess liquids.


As you know, there are many medications that are unsafe to take during pregnancy, so you should speak with your healthcare provider before beginning a medicine regimen. Drugs like Unisom may be safe to take under a healthcare provider's supervision, so if nothing else is able to help your sleep, you may want to talk to your healthcare provider about your options.

The bottom line

Let's face it: sleeping during pregnancy isn't easy, and even with help, you might run into some problems. The most important thing is to get as much comfortable sleep as you feel you need to recharge and feel refreshed.

Read more
  • J Servey, J Chang. "Over-the-Counter Medications in Pregnancy." American Family Physician. 90(8):548-555. Web. 10/15/2014.
  • "Sleeping By The Trimesters." Sleep Foundation. National Sleep Foundation, n.d. Web.
  • "Pregnancy & Sleep." National Sleep Foundation. National Sleep Foundation, n.d. Web.
  • "Problems sleeping during pregnancy." U.S National Library of Medicine. MedlinePlus, 6/11/2014. Web.
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