What Needs to Know About Pregnancy Pillow for Back Pain
Pregnancy pillow for back pain, before I can delve into what a beauty this product is, I want to give you a brief history of what pregnancy was like for me. Looking back over the years, I can now afford to smile over my pregnancies. At the time though, I didn’t think pregnancy was fun at all. Before conceiving, I kept hearing of how pregnancy was a joy and how it was a marvel to carry life. Those things may be true, but I didn’t think so at the time. I hated how my body looked. I was plagued with constant body aches and swellings that wouldn’t go away no matter what I did.
During my second trimester
I found myself becoming constantly fatigued because I could no longer sleep at night. The change in shape and size of my body in addition to the aches. I experienced prevented me from getting any decent amount of sleep. Things changed drastically once I was introduced to a pregnancy pillow. And it is in light of this amazing discovery that I want to share how you can use pregnancy pillow for back pain.
Any woman who has been pregnant can attest to the fact that at times you feel like giving up halfway through. Pregnancy pillows were akin to finding the Holy Grail back in the day. I was ecstatic then, and I’m equally excited to share with you. just how this product can help improve the quality of sleep you get, which in turns impacts your whole pregnancy experience. You will soon say goodbye to back pain, neck and shoulder pain as well as poor quality sleep.
Back Pain in Pregnancy
50% to 80% of women experience back pain during pregnancy, with the pain ranging from mild to severe. Lower back pain is fairly common in women especially in their second and third trimesters. Back pain can be a problem for you during your first trimester if you have preexisting back problems.
Generally there are two types of back pains; lumbar and posterior. Lumbar pain is associated with pain that is above the waist and is the center of your back. Sometimes, the pain may radiate to your feet. This type of pain is caused by sitting or standing for too long in the same position. It can also come about from repetitive motions.
Posterior pain is more common in pregnant women than lumbar pain. The pain is deep and sharp, and is experienced on both sides of the tailbone. It usually affects you from the waist and below. However, the pain is not limited to just your back. If left unchecked, it can affect your thigh and upper buttock. If you have experienced this kind of pain before, then you know that no amount of rest eases the pain. This is why I would highly recommend the use of a body support pillow. Posterior pain is brought on by rolling in bed, lifting or bending forward, and climbing stairs.
What You Will Need
· Laptop or smartphone with internet connection to shop online for pregnancy pillows
· A pregnancy pillow suitable for your needs
· Supportive spouse
Step by Step Instructions
Step 1 Different Types of Pregnancy Pillows for Back Pain
You’re probably excited knowing that there is a pregnancy pillow for back pain out there that can ease your body aches and help you sleep better, and your first instinct is to purchase the first one you come across. Before doing this, it is important that you learn about the different types of pillows available, in order to identify which one would serve you best.
The different types are designed to mimic letters such as “C”, “I”, “r”, “G”, “U”, and “J”. Some other types even look like a boomerang. C shaped pillows offer full body support as you are able to rest your head on neck on the top of the C and your legs at the bottom. The center of the C helps accommodate your growing belly. J shaped pillows mostly provide support for the head and shoulders only. And are the least recommended of the various types of pregnancy pillows. U shaped pillows are the most recommended type because both your head and your back are supported, helping reduce back pain. G shaped pillows are similar to the C ones and offer the same kind of support for your back and head.
The first mistake I made when purchasing my pregnancy pillow was not researching enough. I simply went out and bought the first pillow I came across which happened to be “I” shaped. Needless to say, I was disappointed and frustrated when the maternity pillow did not work for me as it seemed to do for others. Before completely throwing the idea of a pregnancy pillow out the window, I did a little bit of digging around and eventually purchased a U shaped pillow. It was the best decision ever.
Step 2 Choose a Pillow with a Removable Cover
As your pregnancy progresses, your raging hormones will wreak havoc on your body, including increasing the amount of sweat you produce. Yes, it may be easy to simply switch out the sheets and wash them when this happens but what about your body support pillow? The last thing you want is to sleep with a pillow that you desperately need but that reeks of weeks old sweat. Not a pretty picture right? That is why you need to choose one that has a removable cover; one that you can clean any time you need to. A good pregnancy pillow brand will over an extra cover to ensure that you still have one to use even as the other one dries after washing it.
Step 3 Choose Your Fillings Wisely
There are different types of fillings used in a maternity pillow; each with its own pros and cons.
Polyester filling- this type is very soft and the more of it used, the firmer the pillow will be. It will not make any noise even as you move around in your sleep which is a feature that most pregnant women value. One downside to this material is that it does not breathe properly. Remember what I said about rank odors from sweat? With this material that smell may be harder to get rid of.
Styrofoam filling- this is a popular filling choice because of the ease with which Styrofoam molds to your body’s shape. Additionally, it is extremely light and affordable as compared to other filling types. Its disadvantage is that is does make a lot of noise when moved around.
Memory foam filling
this is a firm filling that takes the shape of your body as you apply your weight on it. Once you lift yourself off, the pillow slowly regains its original shape. Initially, memory foam filing would be very uncomfortable because of its ability to absorb and retain heat. Manufacturers found a way around that by shredding the foam which allows for better air circulation.
Micro-bead filling- these are extremely small balls that are used in some pregnancy pillows. The sensation is similar to having a pillow filled with sand. Thankfully, the micro beads are extremely lightweight. This makes it easy to travel with your pillow, if need be. They also produce no noise.
Organic filling- if you are keen on keeping your pregnancy as natural as possible then you may be inclined to use a pillow with organic fillings instead. Examples of such fillings include kapok and wool.
Something else you should note is that your pregnancy may make you hypoallergenic, even to materials that previously did not affect you. If you have noticed that you have become sensitive to allergens then it would be best for you to choose a pillow that is hypoallergenic.
Step 4 Choose the Right Size
As a standard, most pregnancy pillows are designed between the ranges of 160cm to 170cm in length, which is an average height for most women. If you are on the taller side, you can choose from pillows that are specifically designed for tall women and which are up to 320cm long. It is important to note that the size of the pillow does not matter as much as the size of your bed. It would look ridiculous if you bought a large pillow only to find that it didn’t quite fit on your bed. Also, if you are living with your partner, you will need to factor in their space on the bed, unless you want to kick them out and have them sleep in the guest room! Petite women are not left out as there are pillow sizes that are designed with them in mind.
Step 5 Choose a Quality Pillow
Although this is not the case all the time, price can be an indicator of quality. You can find a pillow priced as low as $16 and as high as $140, especially if it is organic. Some of the factors mentioned above come into play when it comes to determining the price of the pillow. An organic pillow is expected to cost more than a regular one, while a pillow designed for taller women is priced slightly higher than a regular one. It all boils down to you; your preferences and your budget. If you’re not too fussy about the finer details of a full body pregnancy pillow then a simple one costing $16 should suit you well.
Step 6 Identify your Pressure Points
In this step you are required to determine where it hurts or where you feel pressure the most. The obvious answer is your back, but then again, it could be either your lower or mid back. Aside from your back, are there any other parts of your body where you feel pain? Once you pinpoint where you feel the pain, it will be easier for you to know how to place the pregnancy pillow in order to ease the different aches you feel.
Step 7 Follow the Instructions Packaged within the Product
If you bought your pregnancy pillow for back pain online, then you may have to rely on the instructions that are packaged with it. If you bought it from a physical store then you can easily ask any of the attendants to demonstrate how to use it. You also have the option of visiting the official brand website to look for tutorials on how to use the pillow.
Step 8 Test it Out
The first time you use the pillow, lay down on your side and position the pillow such that it provides ample support for your head and neck. Pregnancy pillows help in ensuring that your spine is naturally aligned, which further helps in easing the pain. Place a portion of the pillow underneath your belly. This will ensure that your womb does not place any pressure your internal organs. It will also help prevent your belly from putting pressure on your back due to its weight. Additionally, it will also prevent you from accidentally rolling over in your sleep, especially during the first few months into your pregnancy.
Step 9 Place It Between Your Legs
Lie on your side and place the pillow in between your legs. It will help relieve pressure on your back as well as improving circulation in your legs. I saw a great improvement in my swelling with extended use of the pillow.
Bend Your Knees
To help ease lower back pain, place the pillow between your legs and bend your knees. This particular position reduces pressure on your lower back. This will give you comfort in addition to a pain free night.
Try a Pre-Sleeping Routine
This may not be directly related to your back pain but it will help you fall asleep quicker. You could always follow a ritual before going to bed such as reading a book, listening to soothing music, stretching, doing breathing exercises or taking a bath. Once you do this, you will signal to your body that you are ready to sleep. After a few days of this routine, your body will know what to expect and you will find yourself falling asleep quicker. Having a routine before bed is also a great way to de-stress, which in turns helps give you a peaceful night’s rest.
Here are some professional tips on how you can use a body support pillow effectively:
- Shop only from reputable sources online. Unless you are visiting a store physically, you want to be very careful from which site you shop for your pillow from. Some online stores are notorious for advertising the wrong size and color.
- Visit a store physically and ask an attendant whether or not it would be okay for you to actually sample different pillows on their bed, just to see which one would suit you best. You wouldn’t want to make the same mistake that I did when I purchased the wrong pillow.
- Ask for recommendations from friends or family. Chances are that one of them has used a maternity pillow before and can give you advice on the best brands to choose from.
- Check sites such as Amazon for reviews of the best brands of pregnancy pillows for back pain.
- Have a spare pillow.
- Pregnancy has its ups and downs and you may accidentally throw up or sweat all over your pillow. You do not want to spend sleepless nights nursing an aching back and a growing belly, as you wait for your pillow to dry. Having a spare can also come in handy in case you forget your other one somewhere.
- If you order your pillow online and it takes a couple of days before it’s delivered to you, then you can fashion your own makeshift pregnancy pillow. When going to bed, arrange some pillows around you. As you lay to sleep, make sure you have one supporting your head and neck, one beneath your tummy, one between your legs, and one behind you for your back. Your partner can ensure that you arrange them properly and are comfortable. There’s no need for you to suffer more sleepless nights before your pillow arrives.
I hope you enjoyed reading this and have found it useful. Pregnancy pillows should be one of the first things you purchase as soon as you find out that you’re expecting. Getting better sleep at night, as a result of the pillow, helped improve my mood, and health and general wellbeing.
It was an added bonus that I no longer had to deal with constant back aches. You’ll never know the comfort you could get from pregnancy pillows unless you try. Remember, only shop from reputable online stores and try as much as possible to shop from a physical store, for the best experience; have an assistant help you just in case. With their availability and variety, health benefits and price, what’s not there to love about pregnancy pillows? Purchase one for yourself or gift one to an expectant mom.