Sleeping on your back? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 19 Old 04-11-2009, 08:42 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I haven't been able to sleep on my back for months now. My two choices are left side or right side, and I usually prefer my left. If I even recline too much in a chair I start to feel like fainting. I can just about handle the amount of lying down I have to do at my midwife appointments for her to feel, measure and listen for the baby but it doesn't feel good I am often kind of light headed for a minute afterwards. So I bumped into a friend today who is due around the same time as me and looks as big, and somehow it came up that she still sleeps on her back and it's her favorite position. For some reason I thought most pregnant women find lying on their back uncomfortable, but she had never heard of it. So now I'm wondering, is anyone else still comfortable lying on their back??

Jessica, Wife to Owen (6/7/03), mom to Amina (9/20/06) : and Colm (5/30/09) :

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#2 of 19 Old 04-11-2009, 08:50 PM
 
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You're experiencing the Vena Cava thing, which is why pregnant women are supposed to not spend too much time on their back during the third trimester, but every woman has a different tolerance. Personally, I've never been affected by laying on my back, but I do try to stay more toward my side. I know one time this week, I ended up sleeping on my back for a while, and I didn't experience any ill effects from it.

Sleeping is getting annoying period for me. If I lay on my right side, something causes a pain in my right side... feels like intestinal pain, and it's worse if I need to go potty. So I suspect it's my uterus squishing my intestines. I think last time when I had some pain there, my chiropractor said that was where the large and small intestines meet or something like that. So maybe that's just getting pressed on by baby/uterus. If I lay on my left side, baby ends up pummeling that side, and it's so hard that I cannot put pressure on that side. So I end up kind of laying on my back, but tilted a little bit toward my left side, just to make sure I'm not on the Vena Cava. Baby still pummels me too much sometimes, and then I just have to get up and be upright for a while until he goes back to sleep.

Mama to Tornado Boy (6/04), The Brute (11/06), and Mischief (05/09)... expecting in February '15
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#3 of 19 Old 04-12-2009, 11:31 AM
 
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I can't lie on my back, either--I switch back and forth from left to right side. It's been like that for a few months now.

I don't get the fainting feeling. Instead, I get really bad back pain when I get up--even just reclining on my back on the bed or sofa against pillows. When I get up I walk around like I'm 110 years old for a few minutes until it goes away.

I've definitely been told not to sleep on my back at this point--I wouldn't even if it didn't hurt me.

Attached, homeschooling mom to Sam (10), Henry (8), Clara (5--now in public school Kindergarten) and Noah (2)

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#4 of 19 Old 04-12-2009, 11:53 AM
 
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I'm a total back sleeper, and am still sleeping on my back (its hard to stop! its such a natural position for me) I don't get any side effects from it, is it possible that its not a good position w/out feeling like its a bad position? The doc was kind of wishy washy about it, saying that she's 'supposed' to tell me that its best to go to my side, but given that I'm not that big that she wouldn't be surprised if its not an issue and that my body should be the one telling me to switch. Though I'm a bit worried if the side effects are too subtle for me to notice while sleeping?

I'm 32 weeks now.

mom to z (June 2009) and m (may 2011)

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#5 of 19 Old 04-12-2009, 03:15 PM
 
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Supposedly, you WILL notice if it's causing a problem for you. It's not going to hurt the baby before you actually notice it. It should be something that would wake you up.

(disclaimer: since I haven't actually felt it, I'm just going by what I've heard )

Mama to Tornado Boy (6/04), The Brute (11/06), and Mischief (05/09)... expecting in February '15
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#6 of 19 Old 04-12-2009, 05:35 PM
 
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Depends on the baby's position for me. Sometimes I can get away with sleeping on my back and sometimes not. It's very obvious when I need to flip to my side- I get light headed and can't breathe. Unfortunately, being on my back with pillows under my knees is MUCH more comfortable for my pubic bone pain than lying on either side. I do it when I can.
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#7 of 19 Old 04-12-2009, 06:46 PM
 
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If I fall asleep and some how end up on my back I wake up very short of breath.. I have a recliner and have a hard time in in the chair. I often feel faint very fast.. I miss sleeping on my back and belly..

Shawna!! DH Kevin, DD Kaelen (12) DS Drew (10), Sam and Jocelyn 11 months and TTC!!
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#8 of 19 Old 04-12-2009, 07:07 PM
 
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I can't breathe very well when I lay on my back. Left side is most comfortable for me, but I end up sleeping on my right side a lot since I nurse and sleep with a toddler and he prefers the right side.

: Mom to a wonderful teen girl, a happy little boy and a cute baby girl
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#9 of 19 Old 04-12-2009, 07:41 PM
 
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Sometimes I can't stand to be on my back... it's hard to breathe and I feel lightheaded. But other times, in the middle of the night, I seem to roll onto my back & find it more comfortable (for a while at least). So I guess I just try to do whatever feels best at the moment

Amanda , mama to my two boys: N (10/06) and : A (7/09)
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#10 of 19 Old 04-12-2009, 11:19 PM
 
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If I roll over onto my back in my sleep, it makes my arm go to sleep and I wake up. And I can't breathe very well when I'm lying on my back anyway.
I'm jealous of the women who CAN lay on their backs!!

Becky, partner to Teague, SAHM to Keagan (7yo), Jonah (2yo)
 

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#11 of 19 Old 04-13-2009, 01:08 AM
 
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Fifth term pregnancy (8th total - 3 m/c). I've never had any trouble lying on my back. I get uncomfortable if I stay in any one position for too long, but my back is the most comfortable. My stomach is impossible, and both sides are really uncomfortable, as well (left is worst). My back is good for a long time. I didn't even read about not lying on my back until my second term pregnancy, and I never paid much attention to it, as it seemed highly unlikely that my body would be telling me (through comfort levels) to lie down in a way that caused oxygen problems in the uterus, yk?

I'm glad I like lying on my back, because I'm having another c-section, and my back is the only position that's even possible after that.

Lisa, lucky mama of Kelly (3/93) ribboncesarean.gif, Emma (5/03) ribboncesarean.gif, Evan (7/05) ribboncesarean.gif, & Jenna (6/09) ribboncesarean.gif
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#12 of 19 Old 04-14-2009, 03:21 PM
 
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DDC crashing.

I sleep on my back all the time. I told my MW and she wasn't concerned at all. She said some woman very well can lay on their back through the whole pregnancy. She didn't tell me not to or anything.
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#13 of 19 Old 04-14-2009, 03:30 PM
 
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It's usually pretty uncomfortable for me although I really miss it. I lay on my back at night to read my boys bedtime stories. Side lying just won't work for that since they insist that I'm in the middle, lol. But I can barely stand it. Sometimes I wake up on my back though but usually due to the discomfort.
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#14 of 19 Old 04-14-2009, 05:05 PM
 
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For anyone who wants to lay on their back who can't for whatever reason right now, try putting a little wedge under your right side. It will take the pressure off of the vena cava. It still depends on my babe's position, but if I'm really craving the ability to lay on my back most often a wedge of some blanket or flat pillow can make it possible.

Erin sharing life with a burly husband and two rad boys 7/06 & 5/09 : : Zone 9-ish
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#15 of 19 Old 04-19-2009, 12:04 AM
 
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correct me if i'm wrong, but i thought we are only supposed to sleep on our left side anyhow??
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#16 of 19 Old 04-19-2009, 01:22 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by christine1977 View Post
correct me if i'm wrong, but i thought we are only supposed to sleep on our left side anyhow??
That would be a asking for pressure ulcers if we only used the left side. I switch left & right, I've fallen onto my back in my sleep & it's comfy enough but I usually wake up gasping for air & feeling suffocated so I avoid it.

Sahm to 2 girls (17 & 15)& Cody (7/09).
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#17 of 19 Old 04-19-2009, 09:22 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by christine1977 View Post
correct me if i'm wrong, but i thought we are only supposed to sleep on our left side anyhow??
No, sleeping on the right side is perfectly fine. If you have issues with baby (like decreased heartrate, low movement, etc.), they'll tell you to lay on your left side to give baby maximum blood flow. But under normal circumstances, you want to switch left and right, or you'll be hurting pretty bad!

Mama to Tornado Boy (6/04), The Brute (11/06), and Mischief (05/09)... expecting in February '15
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#18 of 19 Old 04-19-2009, 01:46 PM
 
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in my yoga class, we did legs up the wall with a bolster under our hips. my teacher said it was fine to do because my hips were lifted up. it felt great. so i think i may try sleeping like that, with a pillow under my hips. laying on my sides hurts my hips.
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#19 of 19 Old 04-21-2009, 02:06 AM
 
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My first pg I could lie on my back all the way to the end. This time, I haven't been able to since about 30 weeks. Like some of the others, I can barely handle the length of time it takes to measure my fundus at my prenatal appts. I'm more comfortable on my right side than on my left b/c I have a sensitive spot in my lower belly on that side that he kicks the crap out of when I lie on the left side.

Weary SuperMama superhero.gifto my  amazing neurodiverse 6 y.o. DD hearts.gif and to my on-the-go neurotypical 3 y.o. DS wild.gif

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