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Need Sleep? How to Find The Perfect Pregnancy Pillow

By Sara Butler

The Right Pregnancy Pillow

There comes a point in almost every pregnancy when sleeping comfortably seems as if it’s an impossible task. Luckily, we live in an age of innovation and have been rewarded with the pregnancy pillow.

As your pregnancy progresses and your abdomen grows larger to accommodate your little bundle, sleeping can become a precarious situation. This can result in less sleep for you -- and probably your partner too. Using a pregnancy pillow (or a maternity pillow) can help you get a more comfortable night’s sleep, and it happens to add a few benefits to your pregnancy health that are important to know about.

Improved Blood Circulation

Did you know the average pregnant person’s blood volume increases by about 50 percent during pregnancy? That’s a lot of blood your circulatory system has to move throughout your body but it’s also why pregnant women are advised to sleep on their side, specifically their left side -- it promotes better circulation and takes the pressure off your already crowded internal organs.

But with a larger abdomen, sleeping on your side can become uncomfortable quickly, especially if you don’t have something to help support your body in that position. A pregnancy pillow is easily adjustable so you can find a more comfortable side sleeping position to help blood circulation.

Relief of Back and Neck Pain

Body aches are synonymous with pregnancy. The added weight and added fluid volume can cause you to ache all over, but especially in the areas such as the back, neck, and hips that help to bear some of the extra weight.

Using a pregnancy pillow helps to further take the stress and strain off of these areas, helping to relieve achy backs and necks as it cradles your body and better supports your growing abdomen -- as well as other parts of your body that need more support to help you feel more comfortable.

Better Sleep

Many pregnant women are used to being tired all the time. The discomfort and hormonal changes your body goes through over the course of pregnancy can also lead to sleepless nights. That’s why you need to find a comfortable position for rest when trying to sleep at night.

Pregnancy pillows help many pregnant women get better sleep because they help make your sleep position more comfortable. This allows you to get to sleep and stay that way. Well, until the baby playing soccer with your bladder wakes you up.

Pregnancy Pillow Tips

Pregnancy pillows are a great tool for a more comfortable pregnancy, but there are a few things to know about them that can help you to get the most out of your pillow. You should:

  • Choose the right shape - There are several different shapes in the world of pregnancy pillows. There are wedge-shaped pillows, U-shaped pillows, C-shaped pillows, I-shaped pillows, and J-shaped pillows. Do your research so you know which shape is the right one for you.
  • Position the pillow the right way - To get the most from your pregnancy pillow, make sure to position it correctly under the belly for support, between your arms and legs for support, and up against your back to offer support as you sleep.
  • Choose a high-quality pregnancy pillow - A good pillow will have a polystyrene foam or a hollow fiber filling. These fillings are hypoallergenic and can be cleaned in your washing machine, but they are typically more expensive.
  • Think about size - If you’re above average in height, then make sure to get a long pregnancy pillow, between eight and 11 feet long, so it can offer the support you need. If you are shorter than average, a pillow five to six feet long should work just fine.

Getting a pregnancy pillow is a big step toward a more comfortable night’s sleep. And don’t forget, you don’t have to be pregnant to use one -- they make great body pillows even after the pregnancy and support breastfeeding too.

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