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Sleeping on left hand side...

(28 Posts)
Picante Fri 22-May-09 12:59:41

I can't for the life of me sleep on my left side. I figure Mary didn't know which side to sleep on and Jesus turned out ok so it can't be that important?!

slushy06 Fri 22-May-09 13:04:44

I sleep on whatever side I feel comfy with both pgs. Even if I tried to stick to one side i would turn in night.

M78 Fri 22-May-09 13:16:23

I have the same problem and my consultant said it doesn't matter, at the end of the day during your sleep you will change position anyway!

TamTam29 Fri 22-May-09 13:19:44

baby is always on the right side, so to was my son, i try my hardest to sleep on the left but always wake up on my right!

My son managed to put himself in the right position when I was in labour - was induced & had epidural too.

Im not as worried this time - although i try & do other things in the day to reverse being on my right side at night (learning forward, knees lower than hips, sitting on birthing ball etc)

misscreosote Fri 22-May-09 14:16:56

I think getting enough sleep in whatever position is the most important thing!

PS I was actually lying on my LHS a couple of days ago when I felt a huge movement (and at 38 weeks that feels like baby is about to split your stomach open!) and that was baby turning over from left facing to right facing, contrary baby hmm

Picante Fri 22-May-09 17:21:19

So why do you have to do it anyway? Isn't it something to do with squashing a vital vein or something??!

tabby26 Fri 22-May-09 17:27:01

Whats the reason behind sleeping on left hand side? what about sleeping on your back? xx

Tee2072 Fri 22-May-09 17:53:38

I sleep on whatever side feels comfy, including my back. Haven't had a fainting spell do to it yet.

Longtalljosie Fri 22-May-09 18:10:08

If you sleep on your right, or your back, you are putting pressure on your inferior vena cava - whose job it is to bring blood back from your legs to your heart.

I'm only 28 weeks but am sleeping dreadfully because I hate sleeping on my left, and the discomfort on my right / back is enough to wake me up.

I have just bought a Dreamgenii pillow after other Mumsnetters recommended it. Haven't had a chance to testdrive it yet though

Longtalljosie Fri 22-May-09 18:11:20

Picante - what with carrying the son of God and all, maybe Mary was allowed a decent night's sleep no matter which side she slept on? smile

coffeecups Fri 22-May-09 18:14:27

It just has to be the biggest load of baloney I've come across as if being pregnant wasn't uncomfortable enough without making you feel guilt ridden about what side you lie on. My sister mentioned it to me when she was pregnant with her second ( I've had 2 already and never heard of this load of old cobblers before) her midwife told her not to worry.

BexieID Sat 23-May-09 06:29:24

I'm sure that when I was pregnant with Tom he'd start kicking me if I moved from left to right, the wee minx. I have a trapped nerve on my left side so is quite painfull lying on that side, and DP snores loudly in my face, so I tend to keep on my right side.

bunnymother Sat 23-May-09 06:32:56

I think just be grateful you can actually sleep and enjoy what sleep you can get!

Nekabu Sat 23-May-09 06:37:20

I think it's also to encourage the baby (in the later stages) to be in the best position for delivery - head down, lying on the left, spine away from your spine, as that's the way they need to be for birth. I don't think it's worth sacrificing being able to sleep for though!

Longtalljosie Sat 23-May-09 07:16:50

Well, I can't sleep on my right/ back as detailed above, because it makes me feel... it's really difficult to describe, like I can't breathe or something (only I can of course) - so I can only assume my vena cava is being crushed good and proper when I do.

Judging by coffeecups comments though, clearly it's not like that for everyone. Maybe it depends on how you're built, or where your placenta / baby is.

BUT having tried out my new Dreamgenii pillow last night I can confirm it's brilliant, and I slept on my left all night!

Astrophe Sat 23-May-09 07:34:35

My midwife told me not to worry at all, unless I started to feel odd/dizzy etc. With my first two pregnancies I never felt odd, so slept however I wanted, and no with number 3 I feel dizzy/breathless on my back, so I avoid that, but sleep on left/right side as it suits me.

I have never heard anything about left side being better for positioning for the birth, only that some women find blood/oxygenb flow compromised by lying flat on their backs, especially as baby gets big and heavy towards the end.

Astrophe Sat 23-May-09 07:37:34

(midwife also said, in the same way as you wake for the loo in the night, or would wake if someone held a pillow over your face in the night, you will wake if you start experience compromised oxygen flow in the night - or will just turn over naturally in your sleep...and so she said I shouldn't worry about it, and should just get some sleep!)

Nekabu Sat 23-May-09 09:19:29

Astrophe, I've been told that a few times now. The theory is that the spine of a baby is the heaviest bit and if you are lying on your back or slouched, then the baby gravitates to lying back against you, spine facing towards your spine. For birth, the optimum position is for the baby to be lying on the left, spine away from your spine to the outside left. If your baby is lying on the right then during delivery it needs to rotate (I can't remember whether they go clockwise or anticlockwise but apparently they all go the one way) over to the left before it can be born. Apparently they can be born spine to spine if the mother's pelvis is big enough but it's very uncomfortable.

Jackaroo Sat 23-May-09 09:35:12

Lying on your left is OPTIMUM - obviously you're going to move in your sleep, well, unless you're too big to move like me, but it's still a completely true, sensible and important point.

The main issue, though, is that you will know if you are doing yourself a mischief because you will start to feel pretty ropey (as outlined by Apostrophe)... and that is your body telling you to move.

With DS1 I was happy to carry on sleeping on my left as I had always done, but this time I found it relaly difficult to do for some reason; until just a few weeks ago. For the last 5 weeks, if I lie on anything other than my right side I feel sick, dizzy and scarily faint for someone who was lying down.. I think this baby is definitely taking up more space than the first.

"During your first trimester, get into the habit of sleeping on your left side. Sleeping on this side benefits your baby by maximising the flow of blood and nutrients to the placenta. It also helps your kidneys to expel waste products and fluids from your body more efficiently, which in turn reduces swelling in your ankles, feet, and hands." from

Nekabu Sat 23-May-09 10:36:56

At the moment I'd be happy sleeping hanging upside down from the ceiling light if it meant I didn't wake up at 4!

Astrophe Sat 23-May-09 11:52:34

nekabu - delivering spine to spine is uncomfortable...I can attest to that!

SabsBigPants Sun 24-May-09 01:49:19

when i told my mum about only sleeping on your left hand side, she just laughed at me! sad She said she had 4 kids and never had any problems. She thinks i read too much abou what to do and not do in pregnancy. Reading this thread though, it sounds like im lucky that im able to sleep during the night. I'm 22 weeks pregnant

houmousandcarrotsandwich Tue 02-Jun-09 21:56:34

I have always slept on my front, and am now 11 weeks pregnant. I'm guessing this is not good for baby (and probably be impossible when I get a bump), so trying to kick the habit.
Any ideas/advice greatly received! (also am I odd sleeping on my front?! can find no others guilty of this crime!)

Nekabu Tue 02-Jun-09 22:08:05

I quite often sleep on my front - not flat splat on it but with a knee out to one side which does raise my bump up a bit on one side. I don't have a rock hard mattress though and can't lie flat on the floor, so I guess I can't be squishing my bump in bed or that would be uncomfortable too. I cannot sleep on my back - it's front (ish) or sides and am trying to aim more for the left side.

camflower Tue 02-Jun-09 23:37:15

aw, i miss lying on my front. and i can't do proper 'spoons' against dh any more cos of the bump. but it is funny when we're lying that way and he gets kicked in the back!

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