Thanks to physical changes like increased blood volume, hormonal fluctuations, and higher metabolism, pregnant women always feel hot, no matter the weather. But if you are pregnant during summer, the heat can be more unbearable than usual.
In fact, a body temperature of over 39°C (102.2°F) causes dizziness, dehydration, Braxton-Hicks contractions, and heat stroke. In severe cases, overheating can lead to premature birth, low birth weights, and congenital disabilities. Other studies show that heat stress can affect the baby’s spinal cord, causing neural tube defects.
As you can see, staying cool when pregnant is a matter of health, not just comfort. Thankfully, there are ways to keep down the heat you feel even when it’s 100 degrees outside.
Wear comfortable clothing
Choose bright-colored and breathable fabrics that will not make you sweat even more. You should also wear loose-fitting and revealing clothes like vests and strapless dresses.
Stay out of the direct sunlight
Pregnant women are generally more prone to sunburn than other people, and their skin is quite sensitive. It’s best to avoid direct sunlight at all costs and try to stay indoors. If you must go outside, however, take an umbrella or a big hat to protect yourself from burning. Using SPF is also important because it will protect the skin.
Drink plenty of water
Your body needs plenty of healthy fluids, especially during pregnancy. What’s more, cold water will cool you down and replenish the water you lose through sweat. The American College of Obstetricians recommends 8-12 glasses of water daily, but you can fill up your number with natural juices and watery fruits like watermelon, cantaloupes, pineapples, and cucumber.
Take a swim
Swimming is an excellent way to cool down and get a workout in. It also takes some weight off the sciatic nerve, which helps with swelling and pain.
Have an ice pack
Despite the above efforts, the summer heat can get the better of you. In such cases, we recommend having an icepack nearby so you can apply it on areas with large blood vessels like the neck, palms, and cheeks. If you are at home, keeping your feet in cold water can help lower your body temperature and reduce swelling.
How to Sleep in a Heatwave when Pregnant?
Among the leading causes of insomnia in pregnant women is a heatwave. I have seen women going to sit in the fridge or lying on the cold floor in the middle of the night. While these tactics will work, you are forced to get out of bed and give up sleep to stay cool.
Considering that pregnant women require even more sleep, it’s important to find a better way to stay cool without disrupting sleep. One easy way is to lower the temperature of your room from the thermostat. If that is not possible, buy a fan for your room. It will keep the room cool and also act as white noise, soothing you to sleep. Make sure your room is very clean though as fans tend to blow dust all over.
Cooling Pregnancy Pillow and Heatwave
The only other way to stay cool in bed while pregnant is to use a cooling pregnancy pillow. Cooling pillows are made with adaptive fibers that respond to your body temperature by evaporating any excess heat and moisture, leaving you cool and comfortable. Alternatively, you can get a cooling pillow made of gel memory foam, which combats heat retention and stays cool for a while, though it may get warmer with time.
Furthermore, using a pregnancy pillow with a moisture-wicking pillowcase will keep you cool by removing heat and moisture from your skin. Its surface stays cool to the touch throughout, so your skin will also feel cool. This pillowcase should be removable because it draws all the sweat from you, and you must wash it regularly.
A cooling pregnancy pillows;
- Aids in falling asleep faster
- Help fall back asleep when you awake at night.
- Improve mental health and fatigue
If you want a pillow that will cool you all over the body, go for a u-shape or c-shape pregnancy pillow that will provide full-body support and coolness. Our favorite PharMeDoc U-shape pregnancy pillow now comes with a special cooling cover that disperses heat from your body and stays cool to touch all night long. It is perfect for summer and those days when pregnancy feels like a desert sentence.
We love that it’s a full-body pillow because the cool cover keeps the entire body cool and comfortable. This comes especially handy around the neck and between the legs, where the heat seems to concentrate. The cover is removable and machine-washable so we keep it clean and fresh all the time. For those times you don’t want to use the entire pillow (because it’s massive), simply unzip the detachable extension which also comes with the cooling cover to use under your head or neck, between your legs, or even beneath your legs to elevate them.
Final Words – Stay Cool With The Right Pregnancy Pillow
Pregnancy heatwave is not something you should live with, especially if it’s affecting your sleep. Instead, try combining the above tips to stay cool and comfortable no matter the weather. If a fan and a cooling pregnancy pillow are not helping you sleep, leave the bed and go read a book or watch a movie instead. Staying in bed turning and tossing only makes you hotter and stressed, which doesn’t help you sleep.