During pregnancy many physical and emotional changes occur in the body of pregnant women including morning sickness, body aches, heartburn and indigestion and sleepiness.
All these changes occur as a result of hormonal changes taking place in the body. Hormone levels change significantly during the third trimester. Some hormones increase sleepiness while others disrupt night time sleep.
A research done at the National Sleep Foundation revealed that 78 percent of women experience sleep disruption in the third trimester of pregnancy. This interrupted sleep can lead to marked increase daytime sleepiness. One reason for increased sleepiness during day time is attributed to changing levels of hormone; primarily estrogen and progesterone. While progesterone makes you feel sleepy during the day, it can also disrupt your sleep during the night, leaving you feeling more fatigued during day time. Sleep loss may also cause irritability and moodiness.
In addition to increased sleepiness during third trimester, certain specific sleep problems may also occur during third trimester. Physical and hormonal changes during the third trimester alter the breathing pattern of pregnant women. As a result many women have the onset of snoring for the first time during the third trimester. As the pregnancy progresses, some of physical changes may also disrupt night time sleep, leading to further increase in daytime fatigue and sleepiness.
If day time sleepiness is very severe, then you must consult your health care provider as it may be an early sign of sleep apneas. Sleep apnea during third trimester may affect the normal levels of oxygen. Normal oxygen levels are very important for the growth and development of the fetus.
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