Pregnancy fact or fiction: On your back

Filed under: Your Pregnancy, Health & Safety: Babies, Feeding & Sleeping

I heard the umbilical cord would get wrapped around the baby's neck. I heard it would suffocate the baby. I heard it would suffocate me. I heard not to ever, ever, ever sleep on my back. Coincidentally, I forgot to ever ask my OBGYN about whether or not it was ok to lie on my back while I was pregnant, and, honestly, I felt a little silly bringing up such a thing when there were other, seemingly more serious questions to spend our time discussing.

So, can you, or can't you? As we all know, the information we uncover on the Intranet can be flighty. According to the American Pregnancy Association, sleeping on your back during pregnancy is a no no. And not just for the reasons you might suspect. Their article on the subject actually focuses on getting a good night's sleep, recommending certain types of sleeping positions to ease back pain, curtail the dreaded heartburn (you never had heartburn while pregnant? Curses!).

Sleeping on your back can cause problems with breathing, digestion, back ache and hemorrhoids (yikes!) as well as causing potential harm to your baby by decreasing circulation to both of you. Your abdomen rather smushes your intestines. aorta and vena cava. If you wake up on your stomach, as I am prone to doing, just turn back to your left side, the sleeping position recommended for pregnant women.

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.