Congratulations! You will be a mother soon. Pregnancy period is fun but comes with some delimiting factors that make the experience daunting. Why is this so? As your pregnancy progresses, your bump starts enlarging and getting heavier.
The enlarging belly leads to discomfort as the pregnancy progresses. The discomfort brings along leg cramping, back pain and pressure on the entire body. All these can, however, be of no major concern if the mother-to-be gets adequate rest and quality sleep. Unfortunately, sleep becomes a huge problem with the increasing size of the belly.
That is the period you need a comfortable pregnancy pillow to make the situation bearable. Every expectant woman deserves an easy time to carry her pregnancy to term. In an attempt to make this possible, designers created pregnancy pillows that offer the comfort to be mothers need.
These pillows not only help you sleep better but also give your partner peace of mind. Don’t think your partner is excited with the tossing and turning he experiences every night. He will probably be more grateful of the pillow more than you.
- 1 Top Five Best Pregnancy Pillows On The Market
- 2 Benefits of Pregnancy Pillows
- 3 Pregnancy Pillow Different Types
- 4 Best Material for Pregnancy Pillows
- 5 Factors to Consider Before Purchasing Pregnancy Pillows
Top Five Best Pregnancy Pillows On The Market
Benefits of Pregnancy Pillows
Pregnancy pillows are different from the regular body pillows. The former is specially designed to serve the changing body size and shape occurring in a pregnant woman. The pregnancy pillow, therefore, has the following main advantages.
- It firms and supports the tummy
Each passing day in a pregnant woman brings forth an additional increase in the size of the baby bump. The resultant being extra pressure exerted on the spine as well as the neck. With a pregnancy pillow, the tummy rests on the soft material, and this decreases unnecessary pressure on the spine.
- Provision of quality sleep
The main reason pregnancy pillows came to existence was to provide quality sleep to pregnant women. The continuous change in their body brings forth leg cramping and back pain, and this contributes to the lack of sleep. Furthermore, getting a comfortable sleeping position with an extra large tummy is a complaint among many women. Pregnancy pillows relieve this pain and give your body a full balance for better sleep.
- Helps the baby stay in position
The fetus gets to an optimal position when the mother acquires enough sleep and rest. The pregnancy pillow ensures a woman sleeps comfortably, and this plays a vital role in the positioning of the baby. As a result, there is shorter and less painful labor during the birth process.
- Better blood circulation
According to gynecologists, expectant women need to sleep on their left side from the second trimester. Sleeping on the back or the tummy interferes with blood flow as the fetus continuous to add weight. A pregnancy pillow assists the mother-to-be sleep on the left side without much struggle. Moreover, the pillow helps keep the back and hips relaxed as she enjoys a comfortable slumber.
- Eliminates pain
Pregnancy comes with extra weight gain that may cause pressure and distress to some body parts such as the neck, back, legs and the tummy. Pregnancy pillows are designed to provide cushioning to the body, and this leads to reduced pain or no pain at all. As a result, one manages to enjoy a relaxed sleep and rest.
- Avoid allergies
A pregnant woman experiences rapid changes in the hormonal balance, and this profoundly impacts her health. For instance, allergic women complain of skin irritations and respiratory problems during this period. Unknown to them, the problems are mostly caused by the regular body pillows that they use. Pregnancy pillows, on the other hand, are made of hypoallergenic materials that help in the prevention of such allergies.
- Reduces pregnancy discomforts
Apart from body aches, pregnant women experience other discomforts such as heartburn and reflux. A good pregnancy pillow keeps the head elevated, and this helps in the reduction of these two evils. Research also shows that these pillows reduce snoring since they offer better sleeping positions.
- Lifetime use
Unlike other maternity items that only become necessary during pregnancy, pillows serve a multipurpose role even after the baby is born. Unfortunately, not many mothers realize that they can use the pillow for breastfeeding, supporting the back when resting as well as using it for extra comfort when sleeping.
Pregnancy Pillow Different Types
So, as you set yourself in buying that pregnancy pillow, there are lots of factors to put into consideration. From trying out the different types of pregnancy pillows, with varied sizes and shapes to choosing the right one that suits your needs.
Types of Pregnancy Pillows
Pregnancy pillows are specially designed to aid expectant women in making their pregnancy period bearable and improving their sleep quality. The three types of pregnancy pillows include:
1) Pregnancy wedge pillow
2) Total body pregnancy pillow
3) Full-length pregnancy pillow
Pregnancy Wedge Pillow
The wedge pillow is smaller compared to other pregnancy pillows. As a result, they are only used on specific parts of the body where they relieve a woman from pressure as needed.
Using a wedge pillow
You need to place the pillow behind your lower back for a lumbar support to prevent tossing and turning on the bed. You can also tuck it under the tummy when sleeping to ensure the heavy weight of the bump does not strain the hips as well as your back. Other pregnant women place the pillow between their legs for optimal alignment of the hips, legs and the back.
Finally, the wedge pillow comes in handy when you need a regular pillow to elevate your head. By raising your head using this pillow, you can easily relieve yourself some pregnancy nightmares such as heartburn and reflux.
Pregnancy wedge pillow features
- It offers maximum support and comfort to the pregnant woman’s belly, back, head as well as the legs.
- They come in two shapes; triangular (like a wedge of cheese) and rounded (like a crescent moon).
- It has a zip-off slipcover that is machine washable.
- It’s small in size hence portable when traveling
- The pillow is firm and versatile
- It is used in conjunction with other pillows. For instance, you can use a wedge pillow for back support and a regular pillow for supporting the head.
- It is cheap and affordable for most women.
Total Body Pregnancy Pillows
Of all the other pillows, most pregnant women swear to have had a super cool experience with total body pregnancy pillows. These pillows wrap around the back side of the woman and hug the front side creating a firm and comfortable support. If you are that woman who wakes up with a back pain every morning, invest in this pillow and be sure to get better.
Total body pregnancy pillows features
- They are large and bulky hence not portable
- They support the entire body at the same time
- Total body pillows tend to be quite expensive because of their outstanding support and comfort
- The removable cover makes it easy to keep the pillow
Total body Pregnancy pillows come in three styles
- C-shaped body pillows
- U-shaped body pillows
- J-shaped body pillows
Using the C-shaped body pillows
This pillow is the commonest type especially because of its low cost. The pillow assumes the C-shape where the user appears to be riding in the pillow.
The base of the pillow is tucked between the legs while the top part of the C comfortably lies on the head. The C curve wraps around your back, and this helps to relieve the body from the pressure the heavy bump places on the spine.
Using the U-shaped body pillow
If your primary concern is back and tummy support, then get yourself, the U-shaped body pillow. This pillow comes in handy for back sleepers who can no longer do it during pregnancy. With the U-shaped pillow, there is enough support for your back and tummy all at the same time.
The U-shaped pillow also gives you the benefit of sleeping on either side without having to turn the pillow. Above all, since your head is well elevated, you easily manage to fight heartburn and reflux, a common symptom in pregnant women.
Using the J-shaped body pillow
The J-shaped pillow resembles a regular body pillow only that it is curved. The J-shaped pillow ensures your back is well supported preventing it from developing back pain and sciatica.
The pillow easily tucks between the knees and this aids in temperature control as well as cradling your belly. Better still, the pillow elongates to the head preventing heartburn and reflux. However, this pillow is curved at only one side, and this makes it less supportive compared to other body pillows.
Full-Length Pregnancy Pillows
As the name suggests, full-length pillows serve the entire length of the pregnant woman’s body. Full-length pillows are straight and tend to give minimal support to your back.
This pillow can be compared to the use of several regular pillows to support the full length of your body. Most women prefer using this pillow as opposed to several regular pillows since it comes as a single unit. This avoids the possibility of having several pillows scatter on the bed in the middle of a sweet dream.
Using the full-length pillow
These pillows allow the mother-to-be hug and cuddle the soft material with the thoughts of the soon arriving baby.
When sleeping, you need to place your legs and arms around the pillow in an embrace ensuring the center of the pillow is supporting your middle section from head to toe. If you have the long traditional full-length pillow, you can tuck it between your legs for better comfort and support.
Using the pillow the right way relieves you from back, tummy, neck and hip pain. You also need to sleep on your side for better support of the entire body.
Again, when using the full-length pillow, you do not need to use regular pillows to support your head. Unfortunately, the full-length pillow may take plenty of the bed space, and this may make your partner uncomfortable or push him to sleep on the coach or guestroom.
Full-length pregnancy pillow features
- There are two types of these pillows; the straight pillow (looks like a regular elongated pillow) and flexible pillow (resembles a long draft stopper)
- The flexible full-length pillow easily bends and twists to take the shape you want.
- Due to their elongated nature, they are not easy to clean in a washing machine.
- The pillow supports the head, belly, knees and the legs for more comfortable sleeping
- They come with a removable pillow cover that is easy to clean
- Due to the comfort they offer, they tend to be quite expensive
The Leachco Snoogle Total Body Pillow was designed by a registered nurse who clearly understood the hustles pregnant women go through. The C shape design comfortably wraps around your body, and this helps relieve any pressure on the back, belly as well the shoulders.
The pillow’s versatility feature makes it possible to utilize the product for a variety of positions. If you need to sit on the couch as you read your best novel or catch up on your favorite TV program, all you need is to curl the pillow to the preferred position.
Besides pregnant women, this pillow is ideal for anyone who has back and neck problems. The pillow acts as a support system to alleviate pain in these areas, and this facilitates better and quality sleep to the user.
Best Material for Pregnancy Pillows
A good pregnancy pillow needs to be filled with soft and safe material for the optimal comfort of the mother and the fetus. According to experts, buyers need to ensure the pillow qualifies in the checklist of 3 primary materials: hypoallergenic, foam and organic material.
A good pregnancy pillow should not cause skin rashes or breathing problems. Hypoallergenic fillings used in pregnancy pillows prevent women from obtaining allergies that may be passed to the unborn baby.
Pregnancy pillows made of foam easily respond to pressure exerted on them. This makes it possible to take different shapes whether the user is plus size or slim. The foam material, therefore, leaves a pregnant woman comfortable as she easily fits on the distinctive pillows.
Natural materials are eco-friendly, and this makes them best for expectant mothers. The best pregnancy pillows are made of natural materials such as cotton.
Factors to Consider Before Purchasing Pregnancy Pillows
There are thousands of pregnancy pillow manufacturers out there. Spotting the right and quality pillow is not always an easy task. However, the pointers highlighted below play an influential role in making a sound judgment.
- Ease of cleaning
Pregnancy pillows are a lifetime investment since they are used even after the nine months period elapses. Choosing a pillow that is made of an easy to clean material ensures its quality and durability is extended. Pregnancy pillows that come with a removable cover are the best especially for the long pillows that cannot fit in a washing machine.
- The users’ body size
Needless to say, the body size of the user determines the pregnancy pillow to use. For instance, a C-shaped pregnancy pillow has an asymmetric shape that best fits plus size women. Petite women, on the other hand, tend to go well with smaller total body pillows that fit well preventing them from swimming in there.
- Sleeping position
Although experts recommend sleeping on the left side to ensure proper blood circulation, adjusting to this position is not always easy. Back sleepers, as well as those who love sleeping on their tummies, should get a pillow that gives them comfort even as they sleep in their preferred position.
Truth be told; pregnancy pillows are not cheap but affordable to interested parties. The price is often determined by the material used to make the pillow as well as its quality. Beware of extra lowly priced pillows; the quality is most likely substandard.
The best way to understand the quality and functionality of a pregnancy pillow is getting feedback from past users. These reviews can be obtained from fellow mothers as well as various discussion forums online. The insights received can help you in determining the best pregnancy pillow that suits your specific needs.
Pregnancy pillows come in regular, medium and the large sizes. The regular size fits all the standard beds. The medium sized pillows are best suited for the queen sized beds while the large pillows go well with kind sized beds. It is necessary to choose the right pregnancy pillow size in consideration of your body size as well as that of your bed to avoid pushing your partner to the edge of the bed.
- If expecting twins
As mentioned earlier, a pregnancy pillow is a long term investment. A woman expecting twins should buy a U-shaped pillow. This pillow is extra large and therefore perfectly fits the large tummy of the mother to be. Moreover, the pillow comes in handy during breastfeeding of the two angels once they are born.
You are now an informed buyer ready to make the bold step into the market and get yourself a pregnancy pillow. Ensure you keep in mind the best materials to look out for as well as the factors to consider before swapping that credit card. Above all, remember the many benefits a pregnancy pillow gives an expectant woman and then get ready for the well-deserved investment.