Left vs. Right

Jennifer - posted on 08/27/2010 ( 5 moms have responded )

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Ok, EVERYTHING I read and EVERYONE I talk to keeps stressing that laying on your left side is the best way to lay while pregnant. It gives the baby better oxygen and circulation. I keep meaning to bring this up at appointments and ask my OB, but I always forget. For some reason I always remember about an hour AFTER his office hours and it isn't something I feel right having him paged for!

Lately at night I CANNOT get comfortable on my left side, but when I lay on my right side, I'm out like a light (granted only for like 2 hours before I'm up to pee, but still). I make it a point to lay / lean to left side while I watch TV, or lay down to rest during the day, and I do always try to get to sleep on my left side, it just doesn't work, I can't get comfortable enough to doze off.

How bad is this for my little one?? It does stress me a bit to think that my stupid self can't get comfy enough to fall asleep and I just need to suck it up and try harder (like one can accomplish this while pregnant!) to get comfortable on left side. I've tried with and without pillows ... and I just can't do it. Am I the only one feeling this way? And honestly, how bad is this for my little one?? I don't want to deprive them of good oxygen and circulation while I sleep!!

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5 Comments

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Ericka - posted on 09/09/2010

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i have the same problem. I had it with my 1st as well. I'd have to be completely exhausted to be able to sleep on my left side. Outside of pregnancy, I could sleep any which way, but for me, that's the most uncomfortable. I brought it up with my OB and he said that the benefit of actually getting rest, even if on my right side, is better than the stress of being up and uncomfortable all night. I still try, but if I can't get comfy, I just switch over to the right.

Jennifer - posted on 08/29/2010

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I've always been a tummy / back sleeper, so I did start VERY early (like the night I tested positive on a home test) "training" self to sleep on my side. Up until rather recently (I'd say the last 4 weeks or so) my left side was "magic" so to speak. I was so much more comfortable and secure laying that way. Not sure what has caused this change, but I still do try to get as much "left side time" in as possible.

Such are the trials and joys of being pregnant!! Thanks for the imput ladies!
Jen

Joanna - posted on 08/29/2010

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Donna Arand, sleep expert
Posted on Babycenter.com

Sleeping on your side is best while you're pregnant. In particular, sleeping on your left side may benefit your baby by improving blood flow – and therefore nutrients – to the placenta. It also helps your kidneys efficiently eliminate waste products and fluids from your body, which in turn reduces swelling in your ankles, feet, and hands.

It's a good idea to start training yourself early in pregnancy to sleep on your left side whenever you can. Of course, staying in one position all night isn't likely to be comfortable, so turning from side to side while favoring your left side is probably the best strategy.

As for sleeping on your back, avoid that position throughout pregnancy, especially in the later months. Here's why:

When you're sleeping on your back, the weight of your uterus lies on the spine, back muscles, intestines, and major blood vessels. This can lead to muscle aches and pains, hemorrhoids, and impaired circulation, which is uncomfortable for you and can reduce circulation to your baby.

Back sleeping can make blood pressure drop, causing some expectant moms to experience dizziness. On the other hand, in some moms-to-be it can make blood pressure go up.

Finally, back sleeping can cause snoring and, with increased weight, could lead to sleep apnea.

Laura - posted on 08/29/2010

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I wouldn't worry I've been sleeping on my right side quit often the important thing is to stay off your back! I've had to remedy ways not too...I have so much trouble turning over I think my body gives up half way. But if my husband wakes up and notices me on my back he'll wake me up or help me roll to one side or the other.

Jessica - posted on 08/28/2010

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Jen... It is really good for the baby if you lay on your left side but it is not the end of the world if while you're sleeping you can't sleep without being on your right side... It does have its advantages with sleeping on your right side like it is great for digestion... I personally can't as a rule fall asleep without being on my left side but there are a lot of ppl who can't fall asleep that way... Like I said it is not the end of the world as you know it as long as during the day you are trying to lay on your left side then I wouldn't worry... Besides that if you are anything like me you don't stay in the same position the entire night anyway... So therefore you are laying on your left side at some point throughout the night which is good for baby... I know that I move a lot in my sleep and there are nights that I fall asleep on my right side (usually because I ate too much before bed and I need it to move quickly so I can get comfy in the first place) but that is not bad... The idea of laying on the left side of the body does promote better blood flowing to the baby but it is not a must all of the time... Spending time like that when you can and when it is comfy for you is better than not at all... So relax and try not to worry... You are not depriving your baby while you sleep... Try to rest easy in knowing that... Hope this helps... Joy

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