If your baby bump is interfering with sleep, you’re not alone. Many women find themselves waking frequently during the night or experiencing chronic aches, pain and stiffness from uncomfortable sleep during pregnancy. In this blog, we’ll show you how to use Mothercare pregnancy pillow and For Your Little One maternity pillows to get better, more restful sleep throughout your pregnancy.
What is a maternity pillow?
Maternity pillows are designed to help support the natural contours of pregnant bodies to enable a more comfortable, restful night’s sleep. The most common variety of pregnancy pillow is known as a ‘full body’ pillow. These are usually between nine and twelve feet long and can be bent, folded or twisted around the body to provide support to the back, hips and baby bump.
Although designed predominantly for use during pregnancy, maternity pillows can be used by anyone who requires additional support for their body during sleep. People with osteoarthritis, back, neck or shoulder problems, or poor spine alignment often use full-body pillows to achieve a more comfortable sleeping position.
What are the benefits of pregnancy pillows?
Women are advised to sleep on their side during pregnancy to promote better blood circulation. However, side-sleeping can be tricky with a baby bump, particularly when it is swiftly growing by the day, and many pregnant women find it difficult to get comfortable in this position. Pregnancy pillows can be arranged to support the bump and to keep the body in a healthy side-sleeping position all night long.
The back, legs and hips are prone to aches and pains during pregnancy due to the added weight of the baby in the abdomen. Pregnancy pillows can absorb some of the weight of the baby bump in order to alleviate pressure on the rest of the body. Plus, full-body pregnancy pillows can be positioned beneath pressure points or to keep the spine, hips and pelvis better aligned to reduce aches, pain and stiffness.
It is not uncommon to experience problems like heartburn, nasal congestion and muscle cramps during pregnancy, all of which can keep you up at night. Pregnancy pillows can alleviate all of these problems by providing support or elevation to the parts of the body that need it most. You need as much rest as possible during pregnancy, and when your body is comfortable you’re far more likely to get enough deep sleep to keep you and your growing bump as healthy as possible.
How to use Mothercare pregnancy pillow at night
Full body pregnancy pillows like the Mothercare variety are designed to be folded or twisted in whatever way you want to support your baby bump, back, hips, legs, neck, shoulders or head. There is no right or wrong way to use these pillows, and it might be a case of trial and error until you find a positioning that feels most comfortable.
The most common way to use a pregnancy pillow is in a U-shape when sleeping on the side, with the head resting at the top of the U. This position provides support for both your lower back and bump, and allows you to tuck one end of the pillow between the knees to ease pressure on the hips. Don’t forget that you can manipulate the filling of your pregnancy pillow to suit the contours of your body.
Do I really need a maternity pillow?
Although not an essential maternity purchase, pregnancy pillows are definitely a useful investment. Many women buy maternity pillows only when they begin to experience aches and pains in their hips, pelvis and back as a result of pregnancy. However, investing in a maternity pillow early on in pregnancy – before the bump becomes big enough to start causing these problems – can help to prevent pain before it even begins. Dealing with poor sleep and chronic pain is bad enough at any time, but it’s even worse during pregnancy when you need all the rest you can get and might be dealing with various other uncomfortable pregnancy symptoms.
It is possible to achieve a comfortable sleeping position without a maternity pillow, simply by using additional regular pillows, cushions and blankets you have lying around the house. However, the problem with this method is that your makeshift ‘nest’ might shift around as you move during the night. Full body pregnancy pillows are designed to cradle the body in all the right places to provide reliable support and comfort all night long. With prices starting from around £15, maternity pillows are a fairly affordable solution and well worth an investment if you value good sleep.
Can I use a maternity pillow after pregnancy?
Wondering how to use Mothercare pregnancy pillow once your baby has arrived? Many women find plenty of use for maternity pillows long after giving birth, not least because they simply help them get a better night’s sleep! All the ways in which a maternity pillow can support aching muscles and joints during pregnancy are still applicable after pregnancy, so many new mums find themselves reaching for their comfy maternity pillows for years after giving birth.
Maternity pillows can come in handy in many others ways after pregnancy. Some women use them as a nursing pillow, either for getting themselves into a comfortable sitting position or for supporting their baby or toddler as they feed. Maternity pillows can also be used for snuggling up on the sofa with toddlers or young kids, or they could make for comfy travel pillows for older kids (or adults!) on long car journeys. You’ll certainly find plenty of uses for your maternity pillow long after pregnancy and while your little one is still growing.
Be sure to check out For Your Little One’s range of high quality maternity pillows to help you get plenty of comfortable sleep throughout your pregnancy.