Is it true that back sleeping during pregnancy is dangerous?
I have been an Ob/Gyn in private practice for 31 years. One question that I hear often is, "Is it ok to sleep on my back?" I routinely explain why it isn't healthy to sleep on your back after 24 weeks of pregnancy. The weight of the baby pushes down on the large vessels that carry blood to the uterus and placenta. This pressure can lead to decreased blood flow with less oxygen, blood, and nutrients being delivered to the baby. Common sense told me this couldn't be good for any baby. But I wasn't sure if there was research to back this up. So I searched the topic in the medical literature. And what I found was that the studies done in the last decade show beyond any doubt that sleeping on your back after 24 weeks could be dangerous. Here are some highlights from the research:
- Back sleeping results in increased stillbirth rates
- 25% of stillbirths could be prevented by side sleeping
- Back sleeping reduces oxygen and is equivalent to smoking ten cigarettes a day in pregnancy
- Back sleeping can lead to low birth weight babies
It became evident to me that this is an essential issue for pregnant women and their partners. I have even had partners/husbands tell me that they slept poorly due to waking up and checking their partner's sleep position.
I began to wonder why there wasn't a device or assistance to help achieve side sleep. I approached Belly Bandit with the idea, and together, we developed the S.O.S. Sleep-On-Side Pregnancy Pillow, a very innovative sleep device that comfortably and securely keeps a woman on her side. It grows with the pregnancy, is adjustable, soft, and easy to use.
I am so excited to have been part of a new groundbreaking pregnancy aid. It is a simple solution to a common problem.
So be sure to check out the S.O.S Sleep-On-Side Pregnancy Pillow! We look forward to hearing your feedback on this exciting new and potentially life-saving product!
Cynthia Robbins, MD, PA, is an OB/GYN at the Eighth Avenue Obstetrics and Gynecology office in the Medical District of Fort Worth, Texas. Dr. Robbins is consistently named "Top Doc" by Fort Worth Magazine and earned the Patient's Choice Award, honoring her as one of the best physicians in Texas.
For more Sleep Stories head to, https://mamasuncut.com/co-sleeping-bed-sharing-not-as-dangerous-as-you-think-science/.