Are you singing those notes while catching your z's? Find out the reasons snoring starts or gets worse during pregnancy. And what you can do about it.
What causes snoring?
Snoring occurs when you breathe in during sleep and air flows through your throat. The relaxed tissues in your throat vibrate, causing a harsh sound. Everyone snores at some point, and it's normal for pregnant women to snore. Pregnant women snore due to many reasons:
- Hormonal changes: An increase in estrogen and progesterone levels causes swelling of the mucous membranes in the nose, leading to nasal congestion and snoring while sleeping.
- Weight gain: Having more tissue around your head and neck when you gain weight can also worsen snoring.
- Sleeping position: Sleeping on your back more often can make you snore or make snoring worse, which could be one of the reasons pregnant women should sleep on their side. Read our post on the best sleeping positions for pregnant women.
When does snoring start during pregnancy?
Snoring can start at any time of pregnancy, but you are more likely to snore when your bump grows, which occurs around the second or third trimester. Besides, the condition goes away after birth (that is if you were not a snorer before you got pregnant).
Snoring during pregnancy and other medical conditions
Snoring during pregnancy is normal, but you must see a doctor when you have an underlying medical condition. Usually, the culprit is a sleep disorder called sleep apnea. Some of the symptoms of sleep apnea are: loud snoring, waking up with headaches, fatigue and poor concentration during the daytime, dry mouth when you wake up, insomnia, and gasping for air while you are asleep. Other symptoms are: your breathing stopping now and then while you are asleep (you may not be aware of this) and sleepiness during the daytime. Sleep apnea also puts you at risk of other medical conditions such as preeclampsia and gestational diabetes. Both conditions increase the likelihood of a C-section birth.
Is there a solution to snoring during pregnancy?
Yes, there is! A few lifestyle changes can ease the condition.
Try side-sleeping: Back sleeping can make you snore because sleeping on your back puts pressure on your airways. So try sleeping on your left or right side with a pillow behind you or between your legs to prevent you from rolling on your back when you fall asleep.
Maintain a healthy weight: Like it or not, you will gain some weight when you get pregnant. But avoid gaining too much since weight gain can worsen your snoring. Stick to a healthy diet - eat lots of veggies, whole grains and fruits, and exercise regularly.
Get nasal strips: Nasal strips keep your nasal passages open so you can breathe easily. So get some and put them on your nose before you hit the sack. Nasal strips are over-the-counter - you can buy them from a pharmacy.
Quit drinking and smoking: A no-brainer since alcohol and tobacco are taboo for pregnant women.
Keep your head up (literally!): Sleep on plumped up pillows so your head is slightly lifted up.
And while you are it (turning down the volume up there!), get some earplugs for you and your partner or spouse, so you can both catch your z's.
Source: What To Expect
Disclaimer: The information shared by this post is for informational purposes only. It is not meant to be professional medical advice nor a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Consult your physician concerning anything you have read here.
By Nana Ama Afoa Osae I Writer I GreatWonderful Team
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