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I can't sleep on my left side!!!!

(18 Posts)
Annie456 Mon 20-Jun-11 11:00:44

30 weeks and can't sleep...I can usually sleep on my back and occasionally on my right side but if I try to sleep on my left I just get a dead arm and am then awake with restless arms (like restless legs I guess).

How much of a big deal is this? And if I'm sleeping on my back is it ok as long as I have my dream genii pillow wedged so not laying 100% flat? Or is it just a big no no? I'm in a cycle of no / low sleep for 3 nights and then a good 4th night and it all starts again. Another 10 weeks will be torture but at least I am napping on my days off....


KatieWatie Mon 20-Jun-11 11:03:50

I can't sleep on my left either - I start off on my right and then end up on my back (snoring blush). If I was on my left I'd be facing DH which I can't do as I feel like I can't breathe. We tried swapping sides but that has its own logistical issues because of the dog, and it just feels wrong anyway. Baby seems to like to give me a good kicking when I'm on my left too.

So nothing medical for me, I'm just fussy. I need to find a solution fast though.

silverangel Mon 20-Jun-11 11:12:35

I cant sleep on my left either, no idea why but its just not combfortable - am either on my right or my back. If I try and fall asleep on my left, I've always moved by the time I wake up.

With you on the snoring front too Katie, its so loud at the moment I've managed to wake myself up!

ThePieSmuggler Mon 20-Jun-11 11:13:58

I'm with you two, tried to sleep on my left but often woke up on my right or half on my stomach! I read somewhere that getting a good nights sleep is just as important (if not more so) as what position you're in so I wouldn't worry about it too much!

Nicplus1and1baking Mon 20-Jun-11 11:25:19

God how wierd, exactly the same here i am 36+4 now and its getting worse sorry to say, have had no proper sleep now for ever lol

Even the 15 extra pillows in bed dont help now

kri5ty Mon 20-Jun-11 12:57:05

i cant either, its my back or my right, even if i drift off on my left i always wake up in the morning on my right! May try a wedge of pillows to stop me rolling over

Bartimaeus Mon 20-Jun-11 13:14:45

This is reassuring because I can't sleep on my left either! Almost always go off to sleep on my right side and often wake up on my back.
Have bought a dreamgenii pillow but can't use the back bit otherwise I wake up in a lot of pain, being wedged in an awkward position. So I just use the long bit for between my legs and to support the bump...hence why I can roll over!

Not sure how necessary it is to sleep on my left - I'm 25 weeks and so far no one has told me to sleep on my left - have only read it on mumsnet...

WeAreNewHere Mon 20-Jun-11 13:41:18

I've got exactly the same problem - get to sleep reasonably well, then wake up intermittently until 4am, when I can't get back to sleep at all. I think it's a combination of warmth, birdsong and having recently swapped sides in view of the directives to sleep on the left (not back or right hand side - see link: The guidance seems compelling - I've got an Anti-D injection to look forward to on Friday, so I'll ask at the hospital and let you all know if I am given any useful advice. Wishing you all some good nights' sleep until then...

mamadoc Mon 20-Jun-11 13:57:49

I've just been reading a bit of a scary article in the BMJ about stillbirth being linked to not sleeping on your left (I can sleep on my left but not all night I get cramp in my legs from being in one position all the time)
BUT the accompanying editorial suggests the research is very tentative- they were asking women who'd been through the trauma of stillbirth to recall which side they'd slept on the night they think their baby died. Well they might not know which night it was and people will notoriously try to find a reason for such a tragedy so are predisposed to misremember.
There is a plausible reason why it might not be best (compresses the main blood vessel to the placenta) but its never actually been shown that the blood flow is reduced.
I concluded that I should try to stay on my left but not stress myself silly about it.
Also getting up in the night is apparently protective and since I have to do this at least three times now (due Weds) I reckon that might balance things out.

Armi Mon 20-Jun-11 14:06:34

I can't sleep on my left - my baby is breech and he keeps sticking his head out from under my ribs on the left, so I sleep on my right to avoid squashing the poor little chap. I think women have been having babies for millennia, and it's only in recent years fuss has been made about sleeping a certain way. It's hard enough to sleep as it is without beating ourselves up over whether we're sleeping in the 'correct' position.

candr Mon 20-Jun-11 19:28:22

Thank god as this has been really stressing me out - maybe I can try and sleep without worrying I am damaging baby although feels like he is damaging me sometimes - seems to hate me sleeping on left.

vintageteacups Mon 20-Jun-11 19:34:20

At 30 weeks, you just need to be careful lying on your back so as not to reduce blood flow to major blood vessels and therefore circulation to the baby.

Left is optimal but right will be okay. Try sleeping with your knee up on a v-shaped pillow - not on your tummy but almost.

apricotears Mon 20-Jun-11 22:35:41

My midwife spoke about this recently in an ante-natal class. Not sure how true this information is, but she said that it really doesn't matter if you sleep on your left or right; it is simply preferred that you lay on your side as opposed to your back! When asked why the left side is recommended, she just said that research shows babies prefer it, but apparently it does not harm baby if you lay on the right. She also said that if you fall asleep on your side, and wake up on your back- you really shouldn't worry. If you were doing any damage, your body would wake you to change position.

All this info has made me a lot more relaxed, as I have been waking on my right hand side every morning, despite packing a zillion pillows around me to try and stop me moving! Baby's still moving around, so it obviously doesn't bother him!

vintageteacups Mon 20-Jun-11 22:41:16

apricotears - the left does make a difference to the baby getting into the optimal foetal position (OFP) in that this is the way the baby travels from uterus to vagina and it's easier than if lying on the right side.

However, lying on the right is fine and safe. It's lying on the back that isn't as safe and should be avoided.

watch this amazing birth canal video showing optimal position and is also great for showing how important not laying on your back during labour is as the coxyx need room to move back to let the head come down

apricotears Mon 20-Jun-11 22:53:17

I did say not so sure how true the info was, simply passing on information. You hear so many stories, it's difficult to know what to believe and 'live by' and when to just take a step back and relax a ltitle bit.

Thanks for the heads up though, we too had all heard this, hence why we were all asking in the first place.

CBear6 Mon 20-Jun-11 22:55:13

apricotears, I was told something very similar by a consultant while pregnant with DS. He said that I should sleep in whichever position is comfortable, left side is preferable but better an unpreferable position than no sleep. He also told me that when I was waking up on my back not to worry as I'd more than likely only been in that position for a matter of minutes before waking - apparently your body usually knows and wakes you to adjust yourself.

I try to sleep on my left this time round but my left hip is really sore and baby like to lie on my left and objects to me lying on that side too so I'm on my right more often than not.

The research published in this week's Guardian isn't wholly conclusive and even the researchers themselves have stated that it is simply grounds for further research rather than a foregone conclusion, they also stated that the risk is still very small (4/1000 rather than 2/1000).

apricotears Mon 20-Jun-11 23:06:22

CBear, that is very much the gist of what my midwife was saying. It's difficult to know what to do, when there is so much conflicting information out there.

I guess we can take all the information on board (and goodness there is a LOT of it out there), but at the end of the day, our body will do what it does...

I feel your pain with the sore hip, I have been experiencing that too- hence why I think I am moving in my sleep. Ah, the joys smile

vintageteacups Mon 20-Jun-11 23:39:16

For your painful hips, if you ask your MW, they should lend you maternity belts that velcro across your pelvis, holding the hip and supporting it, thus reducing the weight on your hips and pain.

Don't think you can wear them at night but would help at night if worn during the day.

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