As expectant mothers, it is common for sleep to be disrupted during this challenging phase of our lives. However, some pregnant women may also experience changes in the way they dream. Pregnancy hormones can affect the frequency and intensity of dreams.

A study published in the BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth Journal found that pregnant women report nightmares more often (about 25% of pregnant women experience nightmares) and that the frequency of these nightmares is closely related to subjectively experienced stress during the day.

How Does Pregnancy Affect Dreams?

Pregnancy has appeared to cause more vivid, powerful dreams, as well as more frequent dreams. 

Some medical studies have found that the frequency of dreams is highest during the third trimester of pregnancy (about 29 to 40 weeks in), and this is thought to be related to the hormonal and psychological changes in pregnant women. Most of them are going through the psychological changes of preparing for motherhood, as well as the pressures of taking care of a newborn baby.

What Do These Dreams Mean?

Some moms may be curious to find out whether there are underlying meanings to dreams; are they prophecies, signs, or related to our subconscious mind?

Like normal dreams, pregnancy-related dreams have been hypothesized to be one of the ways a person’s subconscious mind processes information and works through situations that are currently on their mind. 

Pregnant women often report having beautiful pregnancy-related dreams, such as dreaming about meeting their baby for the first time or cuddling their babies. Interestingly, pregnant women are more likely than non-pregnant women to dream about annoying situations like having disagreements with their husbands!

How Do These Dreams Affect Sleep Quality?

Although dreams may reflect real-life worries to some extent, you don’t need to worry. Vivid dreams are normal and healthy, and should not be interpreted literally. Don't stress out - your mind and body need deep rest now more than ever! Focus on relaxing with soothing night time routines instead.

Other than more frequent dreams, pregnant women may often experience other side effects of pregnancy, including frequent urination, back pain, leg cramps, and heartburn. These factors may also have an impact on sleep quality.

Dreams seem to be inevitable during pregnancy, so one of the best ways to make sure they don’t affect our mood is to prioritize both sleep quality and rest. Your body needs deep rest now more than ever! And once you have your baby it’ll be even more difficult to get that.

Tips to Improve Sleep During Pregnancy

Getting a good night's sleep during pregnancy can be tricky, but it's important for both you and your baby. If you have been struggling with your sleep, try following these pregnancy sleeping tips:

Avoid sleeping on your back: This is important because the weight of the uterus can press on the spine and back muscles, causing discomfort and pain. 

Sleeping on the left side is recommended
as it improves blood flow between mother and baby.

Use pillows for support: 

  • A half-moon pillow can provide support for the back and belly
  • Placing a lofty pillow between the knees can help align the hips and reduce pressure on the lower back.

Make sure your mattress is supportive and made of natural materials: It’s important to make sure your body is given enough support while you sleep. The Hush Home Essence Firm Mattress is the best option for spinal and back support.

Another important point is to consider what materials you’re sleeping on. With a new delicate member of the family joining soon, it’s important to think about how to make your bedrooms as safe as possible! Focus on sleeping on mattresses and bedroom furniture that are natural and organic. Families with newborns can consider the Organic Mattress™ to keep their bedrooms as safe as we can for their new members.

Create a dark, quiet, and relaxing environment: This will help you relax and fall asleep more easily. 

Maintain a regular sleep schedule: by going to bed and waking up at the same time each day, you can regulate your body's natural sleep-wake cycle.

Take short naps: A 20-minute nap can be helpful in improving daytime alertness and reducing fatigue.

Engage in moderate light exercise: Regular exercise, approved by your doctor, can improve sleep quality.

Eat small, frequent meals: This will help avoid indigestion and heartburn, which can interfere with sleep. Avoid eating large meals close to bedtime.

Practice relaxation techniques: Techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, and progressive muscle relaxation can help reduce stress, while promoting mind and body relaxation before bed. Why not try this 7 minute meditation exercise?

Avoid screen time before bed: The blue light emitted from screens can interfere with sleep.

While getting ready for your little one is super exciting, it's also normal to feel a little stressed or worried about the big day. Sometimes, these anxieties might even sneak into your dreams! 

If your pregnancy dreams are causing you distress, consider starting a “dream journal” to record and process them. You may also consider sharing them with your doctor or therapist.

With self-care and quality sleep, you'll reach your due date feeling confident and refreshed for the magical journey ahead. Cherish each moment of growing your little family within.


Written by Hush Home’s Pediatric Sleep Experts

Stephanie Huen: Certified Health Consultant, Pediatric Sleep Expert
Dr. Charlotte Tang: Registered Clinical Psychologist

This article is for educational reference only and should not be regarded as medical advice. If you have any health concerns or questions, please consult your family doctor or pediatrician directly.