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What's so bad about sleeping on your right side?

(14 Posts)
macdat Mon 29-Feb-16 22:45:48

I've read sleeping on your back cuts of some blood supply to baby. What about the right side? I find it much harder to sleep on my left side usually and wonder if I'm causing any major harm on my right side.

sepa Tue 01-Mar-16 03:37:28

I think the best position is on your left but my MW told me that there isn't really anything to show sleeping on your right is bad!

Tootsiepops Tue 01-Mar-16 03:45:53

There's no difference between left / right sided sleeping. They used to say left was better but turns out it's all a load of old bollocks. You can sleep on your back as long as it is comfortable. Your body will signal you when it's time to move long, long, long before any disruption to the baby's blood flow.

ICJump Tue 01-Mar-16 03:50:36

There has been research out if New Zealand saying left sleeping better. I think it's because of blood flow.

Junosmum Tue 01-Mar-16 05:00:03

It's because of blood flow but I found I got palpitations on my left so ended up sleeping on my right and invariably woke up on my back anyway!

adagio Tue 01-Mar-16 06:33:56

I'm not medical. My DD is 3yrs and my other is now 3 weeks, both healthy 😄

I was told that the main vein which carries oxygen rich blood from your lungs down your body is on your back right side, so in theory sleeping on your left maximises the flow of this oxygen rich blood. The baby won't necessarily struggle, but in the interests of giving your placenta the best possible stuff it's worth trying to avoid sleeping on your back, left is best but right is 'ok'.
Staying active is important, I read somewhere (apologies, was months ago and didn't note source) that women who get up and wee in the night (as in stand up and get moving) is thought to be connected to healthy pregnancy/avoiding still birth - not just 'baby sat on bladder'.

I was conscious of it, I always tried to sleep on my left and forced myself to get off my back or right if I woke in the night. I also made sure I got up to wee (particularly if I woke on my back!!)

confusedandemployed Tue 01-Mar-16 06:42:00

What adahio said about the vein. However if you're blocking this vein in any way at all (eg by sleeping on your right side) your body will start to go a bit numb so you'll move / wake up anyway.

It's just a bit more scaremongering for pregnant women, because there just isn't enough already hmm

kinkytoes Tue 01-Mar-16 06:49:46

I'm pretty sure I read that sleeping on your left side in later pregnancy helps baby get into the best position for birth too - e.g. not back to back.

frikadela01 Tue 01-Mar-16 09:16:05

The advice about sleeping on the right is based on 1 very small scale study. My midwife said that women read these things and get really worried instead of just trusting their own bodies. Sleep however you feel comfortable.

dizzylemon Tue 01-Mar-16 09:45:51

The left side sleeping is also supposed to be easier on reflux as well due to the angle of the stomach - which I imagine might become a bit irrelevant when there's a uterus pressing against it anyway.

My breathing feels tight when I lie on my left unless I lie left and partly on my back which takes a stupid number of pillows to arrange to be comfy. I think it's mostly because my baby is lieing on my right side and it feels way comfier to go on my right. I do also, however, sleep on my back as well and do so with plenty of pillows. It is the position I breath easiest in tbh.

I realise the advice to sleep on the left is in quite a few reputable publications (I saw it in What To Expect, for example) but having read various articles and studies, I think it's a bit unsubstantiated. The advice from medical professionals I've always had that getting the sleep is the important thing and that it's not worth worrying about

Awfulknitter Tue 01-Mar-16 12:08:56

Like a couple of the OPs said, the advice is based on one study. I got a bit paranoid about sleeping position a few months back – I actually woke up in the middle of one night and my first thought was “You’re squashing the baby!” Totally irrational.

I came across a piece on the NHS website about the study and what it actually said (rather than what people recall from newspaper articles that simplified things far too much). It has probably much more information than anyone needs, but basically, sleeping on the left side might be best but there’s no conclusive evidence that it is. And I haven’t read anything as to why! I wonder whether it’s like OPs say, something to do with your body being rather asymmetrical and where your arteries go.

What I really want to know is how people sleep on their side without their shoulders and arms going to sleep, like mine do every single chuffing night. I’m so looking forwards to sleeping on my front again!

sparkleface Tue 01-Mar-16 20:26:43

I try to sleep on my left, and manage it for a while, but it hurts my hips more than being on my right. On my back is most comfy generally, apart from the fact I can't breathe. Sleeping on my right is more comfy on hips and good for breathing but TERRIBLE for acid reflux.

Oh to be able to sleep on my stomach again!

lilygirl81 Tue 01-Mar-16 21:11:27

I've been worrying about this, I have chronic hip pain and the only way to ease it is ti lie completely flat. I'm worried about doing that as now 18+4, but definitely can't go on my left side as that is the sore one, and going on the right hurts after a while

thundernlightning Thu 03-Mar-16 03:46:06

lilygirl don't sweat it. I'm 36 weeks now and sleep about equally on my left, right, and back. Midwife says not to worry about the vein thing, just concentrate on getting enough rest.

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