Tips for a Pregnant Woman’s Physical Wellbeing During the COVID-19 Pandemic

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COVID-19 has rocked the world with more scary news and horrifying statistics every day than anything I can remember. I have been having trouble concentrating and keeping my anxiety down as a result of the news and consequently, have had a super difficult time sleeping.

In addition to sleeping, I know for all you mamas-to-be, sitting on the couch with your work laptop or reclining in bed with a good book, in addition to being anxious about the news, it is very difficult to get comfortable when relaxing whether it be to do work at home or leisurely lounging. Always too hot, too much pressure on your lower back, and too much weight on your tailbone- it seems impossible to get comfortable. More than 79% of women report that their sleep was different during pregnancy than at any other time of their lives. No matter how tired you are, getting – and staying – comfortable in bed may be one of the greatest challenges as your pregnancy progresses. Insomnia is very common during pregnancy and is something many women routinely struggle with.

We have put together some easy tips to help you figure out how to best be comfortable when working and lounging around at home!

When feeling heartburn:

(If you feel a deep searing burn or pain in your upper chest and throat consult with your physician to check and diagnose the potential heartburn before seeking treatment). If you are a mama-to-be suffering from heartburn, it can be extremely painful to lay on your back or horizontally on your side. As a result, sleeping at night or lying down on a couch or even reclining on a chair can be uncomfortable and not conducive to rest or work. Take a rectangular or square extra firm pillow and prop it behind your back to provide support to your lower back in addition to your upper shoulders. Then place an additional smaller and less firm pillow against the back of the bed or couch by your neck in order to provide extra support for your head and upper body. With the vertical support now put in place, you will feel much more comfortable dozing off or working sitting slightly upright.

When feeling too much hip pressure:

When lying on your side it is very normal to feel and increase of pressure at around the end of the third trimester. You have more weight than you had before and you are therefore resting it all on your side when sleeping. Purchase an egg-crate foam mattress pad. These aren’t made specifically for pregnancy, but they provide relief if lying on your side puts too much pressure on your hips. These foam pads go on top of your mattress and under the sheet and regular mattress pad for added comfort and air circulation, and they’re available in a range of sizes. Now you can watch TV, read a book, or take a nap comfortably in your own home.

Uncomfortable knee positioning:

This is an issue we are all too familiar with. Finding a comfortable position without the hot and sticky knee touching is something coveted by all pregnant and non-pregnant women alike. Find a pillow and position it between your knees- regular pillows may work just fine for you, or try one of the many pillows that are made specifically for pregnant women. Some specialty pillows have Velcro tabs that attach two pillows to provide support in front and back of knees and legs. Some pregnancy support pillows are C-shaped or U-shaped, while others are simply a long column that you can arrange however is most comfortable. Another option is a pregnancy wedge pillow- made to support your belly when you lie on your side, and you can also use them to prop yourself up to recline when you’re lying on your back. In addition to the many useful ways these pillows can come in handy when pregnant, many of these pillows can also be used as nursing support when the baby arrives.

Shoshi S.
Shoshi is a graduate from Stern College for Women in New York City. Her areas of interest include policy, non-profit organizations, and administration. During winter 2018, she was a White House intern. Shoshi has also interned at the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles and at Save the Children in New York. As a millennial, Shoshi brings a young and fresh perspective to the worlds of pregnancy and lactation.

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