13:23 03 June 2009
Once you're the proud parent of a newborn, sleep is a luxury, so maybe sleeplessness during pregnancy is the body's way of preparing you for what's in store. This article also appears on www.bbc.co.uk/parenting/having_a_baby
Sleep problems are very common during pregnancy " and for all sorts of reasons.
Simple relaxation techniques can help you switch off at the start of the night, or get back to sleep if you wake up. You can learn these at antenatal classes, and practice them any time you want to switch off stress.
Concentrate on breathing gently and rhythmically, and contract and relax each of your body parts, one at a time. Exercise during pregnancy may also help you sleep better by improving circulation and easing stress. See our feature on Exercise and fitness for more information.
Loose cotton nightclothes or sleeping in the nude can help you avoid over-heating. A relaxing bath before you turn in for the night may also prepare you for better sleep.
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