In the latter stages of pregnancy, sleeping has become a slight bone of contention. Generally being alive is a tiring process when 7+ months pregnant, so I look forward to sinking into bed every night… and then comes the hip pain, the restlessness, the weird dreams and the constant bathroom trips. Pregnancy bedtimes giveth with one hand and taketh away with the other (or however that saying goes).
Lily the cat has no such trouble when it comes to sleeping
In an attempt to make nodding off easier, I’ve reworked my bedtime routine. It’s a given that I go to bed earlier (those pre-pregnancy 11.30pm bedtimes are now laughable), but I also try to wind down before I actually close my eyes to sleep. I’ve been doing this since around 20 weeks, so it was a nice coincidence that Neom recently got in touch to ask if I’d like to try their Scent to Sleep range.
The Perfect Sleep Starter Kit contains a travel-sized Tranquility candle, Perfect Night’s Sleep Pillow Mist and Intensive Deep Sleep Treatment. I’m a long-time fan of Neom products and have used the Pillow Mist and candle before, so knew I was in for a treat.
The products arrived just after I’d finished a mini bedroom makeover – we’ve added a new chest of drawers, hung some art, added a few plants and bought new bedsheets. I find a fresh, clean sleeping space makes bedtime so much more enjoyable, so giving our bedroom a spruce was the first step in reworking my routine.
With the bedroom renewed, I started to introduce my ‘wind down’ steps. I’m usually ready to call it a day around 9.30pm, so I’ll head upstairs, change into my PJs and light the Tranquility candle. When I’m cleansed, toned and moisturised, I’ll jump into bed and get myself settled, which usually involves looking at my phone for a bit…
I’m pretty sure ‘turn off electronic devices’ is the most obvious sleep advice available, but it just doesn’t work for me. I like to check in on my Instagram feed and have a scroll of Twitter before I switch off for the day. So that bit stays, but only for 10 or so minutes. Then it’s onto a book – before we headed off on holiday I started The Little Book of Hygge and I’m really enjoying it, so I’ll read a few pages of that until my eyelids start to feel heavy.
Around 10.30pm I’m ready to sleep, so I’ll spray a little Pillow Mist on my bottom pillow and blow out the candle. I’m a bit cautious about essential oils while pregnant – jasmine is known to induce labour and the Scent to Sleep includes jasmine, so I won’t be inhaling great lungfuls until 40 weeks! Although I’m sure it’s perfectly safe for use in pregnancy (they’d say on the website if it wasn’t), for my own peace of mind I prefer to use just the candle and the Pillow Mist and will save the Intensive Deep Sleep Treatment until I’m properly exhausted (aka the newborn months!).
My final step is to slot a cushion between my knees and lie on my left side. I didn’t get on with my pregnancy pillow as I found it too big and bulky, but a normal-sized cushion works well to alleviate my hip pain, and sleeping on my left seems to be most comfortable for me and Baby A – she kicks up a real fuss if I roll onto my back – plus the lefthand side is also best for blood flow to the placenta.
I hadn’t really noticed how much this routine was helping until I came away on holiday – despite the totally chilled out days and super comfortable bed here in Croatia, I’m not really sleeping well at all. But back at home, having a bit of structure to bedtime has definitely improved the quality of my sleep and I’m waking up more refreshed, which is a huge help when facing a busy day of work at almost 8 months pregnant.
Did you struggle to sleep when pregnant? Any top tips to share?
I rolled up a single duvet and used that as a pregnancy pillow. When used on your side the length means you can have it between your knees to alleviate hip pain and you can have it under the bump.
I had a bed time routine too! It makes me feel at home and safe! That was the most important thing ever so I could sleep well.