For Teen Vogue, by Danielle Sinay.
Has your period ever kept you from falling asleep? Mine sure has. I’m an adult and still cry because of cramps, and sometimes they hurt so much I use my dachshund as a heating pad. Not to mention, I don’t particularly enjoy waking in pools of my own blood, and neither does my heating pad dachshund. Your period may be gentle and easy to sleep on, but in my case, period-sleep deserves it’s own season of American Horror Story. Either way, don’t fret my sleep enthusiasts, there is good news for all who menstruate. It turns out there is a sleeping position that may solve all our period-sleep problems: the fetal position.
Glamour spoke with Dr Lisa Mindley, MD, who told the mag that “sleeping in the fetal position takes pressure off the abdominal muscles,” as it causes the “the skeletal muscles around your abdomen” to relax. Basically, the less strain there is on your abdomen, the less pain and cramping you will experience. Jennifer Wider, M.D., concurred, telling Glamour, that “many women report that the fetal position can help relieve cramps.”
But that’s not all. Sleeping in fetal position can help prevent leakage, too! According to research conducted by the period-tracking app Clue, sleeping in fetal position — with your legs pressed together — makes you less likely to leak, even on your heaviest of days.
But what if you don’t like sleeping on your side? Well, that’s fine too — but if you’re worried about leakage, try to avoid sleeping face-down. Lying on your stomach can put pressure on your abdomen, which causes more blood to come out, Dr. Wider told Glamour. So if you’re prone to leakage or just really like your sheets, stick to sleeping on your side.
There’s still no definite cure for PMS, but at least we now know a way to sleep a little bit sounder. So until PMS medicine makes itself known, you can find me in fetal position — hopefully fast-asleep this time.
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