21 Aug What Happens If You Don’t Get Enough Sleep During Pregnancy?
When you first become pregnant, you may find yourself feeling very tired and needing to adjust your sleep schedule with more naps or longer nights of sleep. It’s normal to need more rest during pregnancy, starting in your first trimester, but it can be tough to get the sleep you need if you have a preexisting sleep disorder or you develop a sleeping problem as your hormonal levels shift. Obstructive sleep apnea is one disorder that can develop during pregnancy as you begin to carry more body weight and sleep in a different position. Fortunately, it is possible to gently and safely treat sleep apnea during pregnancy so that you may avoid the negative consequences of prenatal sleep loss discussed below.
Effects on Your Health
If you don’t get enough sleep while you’re pregnant, you might find that the physical discomforts of pregnancy as well as the mental stress are more difficult to cope with. In addition, you may have a higher risk for conditions like preeclampsia and gestational diabetes, both of which may be fatal without proper care.
Effects on Childbirth
Believe it or not, losing sleep during pregnancy can have a big impact on the comfort and length of your labor and delivery. Women who get fewer than 6 hours per night on average during pregnancy may be 5 times more likely to need a C-section. Additionally, those who do deliver naturally may have a higher risk for complications and longer delivery times.
Effects on Your Baby
Sleep loss, and sleep apnea in particular, can also have a direct effect on your baby’s future health. Women with untreated sleep apnea are more likely to have children who suffer from metabolic syndrome, and the recurring loss of oxygen during sleep may also lead to developmental disabilities in children.