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Insomnia and Pregnancy: What to Know About


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Insomnia during pregnancy can affect your day-to-day activities and cause stress. It may be difficult to find the right position to sleep in when you are pregnant. 

While pregnancy is a wonderful time to enjoy a long nap, many women find it hard to sleep. Besides leg cramps, fetal movement and anxiety can make it difficult to get a good night’s sleep. 

Insomnia and fatigue early pregnancy symptoms can easily be tackled with the right tips. Try avoiding screen time near bedtime. And if nothing works, invest in a good pregnancy pillow.

However, if your insomnia continues, talk to your healthcare provider. If your sleep problems persist, you should visit your doctor or midwife to get the right diagnosis.

Treatment for insomnia during pregnancy focuses on psychological approaches. However, you should not take any over-the-counter medications unless your doctor has approved them for pregnant women. 

In this article, we will discuss insomnia and pregnancy along with ways to combat it. 

What Is Insomnia?

Insomnia is a condition wherein an individual cannot get enough restful sleep. It can be associated with a number of factors. Insomnia could be temporary, tied to a stressful situation like pregnancy, a painful breakup, or jet lag. 

To diagnose insomnia, you must consult a medical professional. A sleep specialist can perform a physical exam and listen to your heart and lungs, as well as perform routine screening measures.

If you are experiencing insomnia, you must seek medical advice. A doctor can diagnose insomnia by taking your health history and asking about your sleeping habits. They can also perform certain tests to rule out other medical problems causing your insomnia. 

Prevalence of Insomnia during Pregnancy

The prevalence of insomnia during pregnancy is one of the most common health problems experienced by expectant mothers. During the first trimester, sleep problems are common, as are frequent urination, nausea, and vomiting. 

Later on, in pregnancy, sleep problems can include restless legs syndrome, back pain, and changing sleeping positions. Lack of sleep has been associated with many adverse effects on the mother and baby, and treatments include improving sleep habits, medications, and psychotherapy.

The study concluded that insomnia is the most common sleep disorder during pregnancy. Insomnia affects approximately half to sixty percent of women during the first trimester, and two-thirds experience the condition later in pregnancy. 

More than two-thirds of women report experiencing middle-of-the-night awakenings, and less than one-third consider sleep disturbance a major problem. Pregnancy insomnia and anxiety are often related. 

The link between Insomnia and Pregnancy

Sleep deprivation during pregnancy is a common problem. During pregnancy, the physical and emotional changes will make it difficult to fall asleep. Insomnia during pregnancy can also be caused by medical conditions, such as sleep apnea. You need to know about insomnia and early pregnancy symptoms to combat this problem. 

These conditions will affect the health of both the mother and her baby. Therefore, improving your sleeping hygiene and getting a full night’s rest is important.

Women who sleep less than six hours per night during their pregnancy have a higher chance of undergoing C-sections. The birth weight of babies born to mothers who sleep less than eight hours a night is also lower. 

Chronic sleep deprivation during pregnancy has been linked with many health problems, including higher blood pressure and increased BMI.

While these problems don’t always result in weight problems, they can increase the likelihood of cesarean delivery. Sleep deprivation during pregnancy can also lead to postpartum depression, so it is vital to understand the link between sleep and health during pregnancy.

What Causes Insomnia during Pregnancy?

Sleep disturbances plague many women during pregnancy. Physical discomforts, such as backache, increased urinary frequency, and breast tenderness, can cause a woman to wake up at odd hours. 

Sleep deprivation during pregnancy can affect both the mother and the unborn fetus. Consult your health care provider for help finding the best solution. They can also recommend lifestyle changes and referrals to sleep doctors. Here are the common causes of insomnia during pregnancy.

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Need to urinate frequently
  • Breast tenderness
  • Back pain
  • Leg cramps
  • Heartburn
  • Abdominal discomfort
  • Vivid dreams
  • Shortness of breath

How to Kick Insomnia in Early Pregnancy?

If you are pregnant and experiencing chronic insomnia, there are several ways to beat it. Developing a regular bedtime routine is one way to help you fall asleep. Exercise and diet are also important, but comfort is key. Insomnia can affect your overall health, so consult your healthcare provider before trying any home remedies. Here are some common ways to kick off insomnia in early pregnancy

  • Develop A Bedtime Routine

If you are pregnant, a good night’s sleep can seem impossible. But if you develop a bedtime routine, you will sleep better every night. You may even feel better if you start avoiding liquids after 7 p.m. Try changing your bedroom into a relaxing environment. Make your bed as cosy as possible. Despite the fact that insomnia is common during pregnancy, you can overcome this problem with a few simple steps.

  • Diet and Exercise

While insomnia can be uncomfortable, it isn’t dangerous for your baby. Nevertheless, a few changes to your diet and exercise regimen can help you kick off insomnia in early pregnancy. Diet and exercise can help you get enough sleep and make you feel refreshed in the morning. You should discuss insomnia with your healthcare provider, especially if it interferes with sleep.

  • Comfort Is Key

For many pregnant women, sleep becomes a major challenge during pregnancy. Physical and emotional obstacles often complicate it. Pregnancy insomnia and anxiety are often related, so you need to try to find comfort. It can also be caused by the inability to find a comfortable sleeping position. You need to stay comfortable to avoid insomnia. Change your sleeping position. As you approach your second trimester, sleeping on your side is ideal. 

  • Try to Relax

Sleeping problems are common during pregnancy. Insomnia can be a serious issue, affecting up to two-thirds of pregnant women by the end of their pregnancy. To overcome insomnia in early pregnancy, you should learn how to relax and get quality sleep. If you find it difficult to sleep at night, try getting up and doing something interesting during the day. Try reading a book, having a warm drink or snack, and relaxing your body. 

When Does Insomnia During Pregnancy Start?

Insomnia during pregnancy can begin as soon as you become pregnant. Usually, it peaks during the second half of the pregnancy, but some women experience insomnia as early as six or seven weeks. 

Sleepless nights during the first trimester usually subside by the second trimester as hormone levels stabilize. If you experience insomnia during pregnancy, it’s important to talk to your health care provider to learn more about what to do.

Insomnia is a common complaint during pregnancy, affecting up to 75% of women. The physical changes and associated anxieties can cause problems sleeping. Insomnia during pregnancy can be a chronic condition or a temporary state. 


  • How Long Does Pregnancy Insomnia Last?

If you have insomnia, you’re not alone. More than seventy percent of pregnant women experience some form of it during the third trimester. However, it’s important to note that pregnancy insomnia does not last for more than 9 months

  • Will Insomnia During Pregnancy Harm the Baby?

Insomnia during pregnancy is a common condition and will not harm the baby. If you’re having trouble sleeping, consider talking to a doctor. There are many treatments available for sleeplessness in pregnancy.

  • At What Stage of Pregnancy Does Insomnia Start?

Insomnia in pregnancy is a very common problem. Hormone levels increase significantly during pregnancy, making sleep difficult. Pregnancy insomnia may begin in the first trimester. However, it can occur at any stage of gestation.  


Insomnia is a common symptom of pregnancy. More than 50% of women suffer from insomnia at some point during their pregnancy. The main cause of insomnia is hormonal change and stress. If you are suffering from sleep deprivation, you should follow the tips in this article to combat it. Improve your eating habits, exercise regularly, and drink plenty of water to sleep soundly. If your insomnia persists even after delivery, it is best to contact a doctor. 


Somapika Dutta (B.Sc Physiology, Honours)
Somapikar holds Bachelors Degree in Physiology from University of Culcutta. She has 6+ years of experience writing in different niches, including health, tech and lifestyle. An animal enthusiast and a raging foodie, experiencing life - one day at a time.


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