The best mattress for pregnancy does exist, and it can go a long way toward helping you sleep better. We know that for many moms-to-be, getting a good night’s sleep can seem like an impossible dream. Though pregnancy makes you feel more tired than usual, the changes your body undergoes as your baby grows can make falling asleep—and staying asleep—a major challenge.
In the first trimester, issues such as back pain, nausea and vomiting, and more frequent trips to the bathroom are most likely to keep a woman up at night; in the second and third trimester, the most common culprits are leg cramps, heartburn, shortness of breath, and the baby’s kicks.
Fortunately, there are mattresses and bedding accessories designed to give a pregnant body the cushioning and support it needs. Read on to find products that can help relieve pain, ease heartburn symptoms, and more.
Memory foam mattresses and mattress toppers for pregnancy
Many pregnant women find they need extra cushioning when they sleep to ease the aches and pains caused by fluctuating hormones and the strain of carrying more weight in the front of the body. If you’re searching for the best mattress during pregnancy, consider one made with memory foam. This material is ideal when you’re expecting because it alleviates pressure points and also conforms to a changing body. One drawback of memory foam is that it retains heat—the last thing you need considering many pregnant women experience increased sweating—but you can avoid this issue by choosing a gel-infused memory foam mattress that dissipates heat more easily.
Latex is another good choice, especially for pregnant women who toss and turn or need to get out of bed multiple times during the night. That’s because like memory foam, latex mattresses tend to have good motion isolation, meaning that the movement of one person is less likely to disrupt sleep for the other party. That can also make it a good choice for when the baby arrives, when night wakings will almost certainly become even more frequent.
Natural latex is also free of the toxic chemicals present in many foam mattresses, which may be appealing to women who are pregnant and/or spending time in bed with a newborn.
Not in the market for a new mattress for pregnancy? Look into adding a memory foam mattress topper. They’re thicker than mattress pads and can make a too-firm mattress feel just right.
Sleep more comfortable during pregnancy with these Saatva products
Loom and Leaf Memory Foam Mattress
Premium memory foam, handcrafted in the U.S. with eco-friendly materials. Breathable organic cotton, cooling spinal gel, and layers of high-density support foam assure a cool, comfortable night's sleep.
Zenhaven Latex Mattress
Natural latex responds to every curve for pressure-free support and responsive comfort. Natural latex is supple, resilient, and durable, for the ultimate in elevated sleep. (It's naturally hypoallergenic too.)
Graphite Memory Foam Topper
The latest in high-tech cooling. The contouring support of memory foam, plus the advanced heat-dissipating properties of graphite.
Adjustable Base Plus
With weightless, Zero Gravity support, the Saatva Adjustable Base Plus allows you to set your ideal position for sleeping—and living—with one touch of the remote.
Available in a variety of shapes, pregnancy pillows are designed to ease the aches and ailments that keep many moms-to-be up at night. Here’s how each style benefits your body:
These are ideal for pregnant women experiencing heartburn. As your belly grows, it can cause stomach acids to back up into your esophagus, which creates that awful burning sensation. Sleeping with your head elevated on a wedge pillow can help ease heartburn by preventing the acids from entering the esophagus.
A wedge pillow can also be slid under your belly to prevent the extra weight from straining your back. And once you’ve had your baby, you can use it to prop up your upper body when you nurse in bed.
These contoured wedges keep your upper and lower leg aligned when you sleep on your side, which experts say is the best sleep position for pregnant women (side-sleeping can help you avoid shortness of breath, and sleeping on your left side, in particular, may improve blood flow to your baby.) Sleeping with your legs stacked prevents the top leg from sliding forward and resting on the mattress, which can strain your lower back.
Prefer to sleep on your back? Place the pillow under your knees to ease the stress on your spine and avoid aches and pains.
These narrow pillows, which may be straight or flexible, run the length of your body and are meant to be hugged as you sleep (basically, they’re like a more soft and cozy version of your partner). You can tuck a body pillow beneath your belly for extra cushioning and support and place it between your thighs to keep your legs stacked.
If you like sleeping on your side, a C-shaped pillow is a good choice. You sleep inside the C with your head resting on one end and the other end placed between your knees. Face the back of the pillow to support your belly or face the opening of the C for back support.
If you’re looking for belly and back support, consider a U-shaped pillow. Place the U upside down on your bed and lie on your side inside it with your head at the top.
This style is also a particularly good option if you usually sleep on your stomach or back—something that becomes pretty much impossible by the third trimester—because it helps you maintain a side-sleeping position throughout the night. Like wedge styles, U-shaped pillows can be repurposed as nursing pillows after you give birth.
If you’ve been looking for a new bed, consider one that has an adjustable base. With just a click of the remote, you can adjust the bed’s incline to suit your needs.
For example, raising the head of the bed can help prevent heartburn and make it easier to breastfeed, while elevating your knees takes pressure off your back to ease any soreness you’re experiencing. And a bed with an adjustable base isn’t just a smart choice for pregnant women: Many couples like it because it allows them to read, work, or watch TV comfortably in bed. Learn more about the perks of an adjustable base.
Could melatonin help you sleep better while pregnant? Learn if taking melatonin during pregnancy is safe.