As if there aren't enough things to worry about when you're expecting, you can add getting a good night’s rest to the list. While difficulty sleeping is a common problem for expectant mothers, research from the University of Pittsburgh suggests that it’s something we should be thinking about more.
The study looks at the role of adequate sleep in maintaining a healthy immune system, and provides evidence that suggests it is an important and complex relationship. It also notes a link between sleep disruption and depression, both of which can become problems in increasing the risk for birth complications, including low birth weight and pre-term births. For these reasons, the research emphasizes the importance of identifying sleep problems early in pregnancy.
So what exactly are some of the issues keeping expectant mothers from sleeping? Dr. Andrea Skorenki, an obstetrician/gynecologist at Grey Nuns Hospital in Edmonton, says common sleep disturbances include:
Dr. Skorenki offers some tips to help you nod off:
Originally published in ParentsCanada magazine, February 2015.