We have heard pregnant women being told from time that they should not sleep on their right side. While this is for a reason, the truth of the matter is that it’s easier said than done.

Although pregnant women are advised to sleep on their left side, even a person who is not pregnant knows that this is close to impossible. At least for some people, you are more likely to shift sides during sleep. Imagine the struggles that pregnant women go through at night such as insomnia, backaches, heartburn, and, peeing after every few minutes. Now add to that by telling them to sleep on their left side for the whole night.

Sleeping on the left side during pregnancy

Pregnant woman sleeping(Getty images)
Pregnant woman sleeping(Getty images)

According to the American pregnancy association, sleeping on the left side is best because it enhances the transfer of Oxygen and nutrients to your baby through the placenta. So, if you can hack it, the better. Even so, they recommend that it’s okay to shift sides during the night. But, you should avoid sleeping on your back. Of course, by the second trimester, your abdomen will not even allow you to sleep on your stomach.

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Why you should not sleep on your back during pregnancy

Apart from sleeping on your side, the next option might be sleeping on your back. This, however, might cause problems ranging from backaches, breathing difficulties, and, low blood pressure which is not just bad for you but also for the growing fetus.

Fetal movement (BabyGaga)
Fetal movement (BabyGaga)

Sleeping on your back puts pressure on some of the most vital organs such as the aorta, inferior vena cava, and, the blood vessels that carry blood to your heart. This pressure slows the circulation of blood to your body and the baby.

Research about sleeping on your back

pregnant woman
pregnant woman
Self

The danger of sleeping on your back during pregnancy is that it increases the risk of stillbirth as found by one study. The study found that the fetal activity decreased when women slept on their back and that changed as soon as they shifted to sleeping on their right or left side.

Although more studies might still be needed in the area, this case study clearly shows that sleeping on your back during pregnancy affects the wellbeing of the growing fetus.