Aches and pains and general discomfort make a substantial impact on pregnancy. Sitting is a chore, lying down an uphill task and sleeping soundly a thing of the past. Sleep is very important no matter what stage of life you are in and pregnant women need to get as much as possible before the baby comes.
Sleeping soundly in pregnancy may therefore require a little assistance. What better way than a pillow to increase comfort? Pregnancy pillows are not the regular pillows you know about though because they are designed to cover the ‘problem areas’ when sleeping.
Many women experience back pain, pain in their thighs, and pain in their abdomen when lying down. They can’t sleep on their back because it is not advisable during pregnancy (it will cut off oxygen to the foetus and interfere with the baby’s development) so the only option is sleeping on the side.
A proper pillow should therefore ease the discomfort in all these areas and ensure a good night’s sleep.
Different types of pregnancy pillows
As the name suggests, this is a pillow in the shape of a wedge. It is small and can be placed under your tummy, behind your back and even under your regular neck pillow to give extra support and raise your head. This would reduce reflux and heartburn. It comes as a triangular or circular wedge.
Full length pillow
These are long and are placed along the length of your body. Since they come as one straight unit, they eliminate the need for multiple regular pillows along the length of your body to achieve maximum comfort. Multiple pillows can easily shift in different directions as you toss in your sleep while this single unit stays in place.
They are available in straight and flexible types. The straight type looks like a regular pillow only much longer but it maintains its shape when you use it while the flexible body pillow looks like a large draft stopper and bends into any shape that you prefer.
The full length pillow is to be hugged and cuddled and therefore makes for a great bed mate. You can place both your arms and legs around it and it would support your torso. You don’t need a pillow for your head with this body pillow because it is long enough for your whole body. It is however not ideal for those who easily turn on their back when sleeping because it will not stop you from turning.
Total body pillow
This type covers the front and back of your body hence the name total body pillow. They are about five or six feet long and can therefore fit an average-sized adult comfortably. The back support works well for those who wake up with a sore back every day. Your neck also remains supported so there is no neck pain involved. You can get one shaped like a U or a C.
With the C-shaped pillow you place your head on the top of one end and place the other end between your legs. Your back automatically fits into the curve of the C. With the U-shaped pillow, place your head at the curve that forms the U and your legs go at the bottom. It will keep you from turning on your back since it covers your whole body.
Good qualities to look out for
- Proper and even filling that doesn’t clump up when the pillow is used
- A removable cover to ease washing
- Firm pillow to provide proper support
- Size (too big and you’ll push your partner out of bed or it won’t even fit on your bed)
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