Give you and your baby the best chance of a good night's sleep

Pregnancy and then a new baby can make getting enough sleep difficult, especially if your partner suffers from Sleep Apnoea...

When your baby arrives you will want to be on top form in order to give him or her all the care and attention they need, day or night. The chances are that you will also be among the three quarters of women who have difficulty getting enough sleep during pregnancy.

Leg cramps, heartburn, frequent toilet trips, can all make sleep difficult. So when you have the opportunity for sleep you need to make the most of it. Good practices to avoid insomnia include taking daily exercise, not smoking or drinking alcohol, avoiding caffeine in the evenings, and not eating a big meal too close to bedtime.

However, it could be your partner that is giving you sleepless nights if he has a snoring problem; and it could be due to a medical condition. The most common sleep disorder is called Obstructive Sleep Apnoea, and men are twice as likely to suffer from this than women.

The problem itself is a disrupted breathing pattern during sleep caused by a closing of the upper airways of the lungs when you relax and a period of time when your body stops breathing. Common indicators of Sleep Apnoea are loud snoring, daytime fatigue, memory loss, frequent urination, and loss of interest in sex.

Sleep Apnoea also carries significant health risks, increasing the risk of high blood pressure, heart attack, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and obesity.

Sleep Apnoea can usually be treated by making small lifestyle changes, but moderate or severe Sleep Apnoea may require wearing a CPAP machine while you sleep. This is a mask attached to a machine that helps you to breathe at night by providing a steady supply of air.

If you are concerned that you or your partner may be suffering from Sleep Apnoea it is advisable to consult your GP, who can then refer you to specialist for diagnosis and treatment.

When your new baby arrives you will need all the rest you can get, so it makes sense to get a sleeping disorder treated in plenty of time for the birth.

For further information read Mr Oko's Guide to Sleep Apnoea