Sleeping Well During Pregnancy: Could it Help Prevent Premature Babies?

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Prenatal Sleep Disturbances

Many women struggle with sleep problems during pregnancy; in fact, 78% report experiencing trouble sleeping at some point, according to a survey cited by a 2016 study. The study noted that the vast majority of women experience nocturnal awakenings in their third trimester, a period fraught with physical discomfort.

Nausea, back pain, gastroesophageal reflux (GER), and frequent trips to the bathroom can interrupt sleep continuity throughout the pregnancy, making it difficult for many women to maintain healthy sleep habits. Meanwhile, hormone levels and nutritional needs can trigger other issues; during the first trimester, fluctuations in progesterone levels can increase the risk of sleep apnea, while restless leg syndrome can develop in the third trimester as a result of folic acid insufficiencies.

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