How to Sleep with a Pregnancy Pillow

Advertising Disclosure

How to Sleep with a Pregnancy Pillow

Pregnancy is a beautiful 9-months journey, but it can often be painful and uncomfortable. As your womb, and the little one inside it grows, you start to feel pressure on your joints and increasing aches and pains in your body. Pregnancy support pillows help reduce this pain and discomfort by taking the stress off your body, giving you and your baby a much-needed good night’s sleep.


There are many kinds of pregnancy support pillows, each with their own benefits. We are going to go over the different kinds and how to use them. But first, it is important to understand what a pregnancy support pillow is, why and when you need it, and how much does it cost.

Why Pregnancy Makes Sleep Difficult

There are 3 main reasons that make sleeping difficult during pregnancy: hormones, heartburn and stress.

  • Hormones: Changing, increasing and diminishing levels of certain hormones alter sleep patterns and even affect the quality of sleep. Daytime sleepiness, unusual dreams and discomfort all make getting a good night’s sleep seem impossible. Pregnancy support pillows are a great way to offset these unwanted experiences.
  • Heartburn: Unpredictable hormonal change also causes heartburn, a burning feeling in the chest and throat.
  • Stress: Pregnancy brings a lot of uncertainty and anxiety about whether or not a soon-to-be mom is doing her best, if she could be doing something more, or even is she is doing all the right things. With all these doubts and worries, it is no wonder that sleep seems unattainable.

This is why you need pregnancy support pillows. Sleep is crucial not only for your health but your baby’s health as well. A pregnancy pillow helps you establish and maintain routine in a time where everything else seems so unordered.

A few tips regarding sleep positions without a pregnancy support pillow:

  • Sleep on your left side to avoid pressure on the liver.
  • In the initial stages you can sleep on your back. However, in the latter stages this will cause pressure to the muscles and spine so it is best to switch to the side.

For more reasons why sleeping on your side helps during pregnancy, watch this great video:

What is a Pregnancy Pillow?

A pregnancy pillow or a pregnancy support pillow is a specially designed pillow that supports the body as it changes over the course of pregnancy. They are longer than usual pillows because they provide support to the whole body and ease discomfort across the various sleeping positions. A pregnancy pillow is particularly useful during the latter stages of pregnancy when sleeping and even lying down can become troublesome.

Pregnancy Pillow Benefits

A pregnancy pillow comes with many benefits. While better sleep is the primary advantage, there are many pros that extend beyond, and are a result of, better sleep. Here is a list of pregnancy pillow benefits:

  • Alleviates body aches and pains: Pregnancy increases body weight, which, in turn, puts pressure on the back, legs and joints. A pregnancy pillow removes stress from those parts of the body that are most susceptible to pain.
  • Better sleep: A pregnancy pillow provides longer and more restful sleep, allowing you to establish routine, recharge and have a safer pregnancy.
  • Blood circulation: Sleeping on the side enhances blood circulation. While during pregnancy, this might be difficult or even painful, a pregnancy support pillow provides a soft padding and cushion that makes sleeping on the side easy and comfortable.
  • Helpful later on: A pregnancy support pillow has advantageous even after birth. It allows for a natural way to put your baby in the right position, so that the child can learn to latch.

For more detail on the numerous benefits of pregnancy support pillows watch:

When to Buy a Pregnancy Pillow?

While pregnancy support pillows have been known to provide comfort throughout the 9-month period, they are especially useful during the later stages. Usually, at the 20-week mark, pain and discomfort set in while trying to sleep. Muscles and joints succumb to stress that increases during the third trimester. Usually, the second trimester is the perfect time to start using pregnancy support pillows.

How much is a Pregnancy Pillow?

Pricing for pregnancy support pillows can range anywhere from as low as $20 all the way up to $100. The difference in price is due to the many different types of pillows out there. The pregnancy wedge pillow or maternity wedge pillow is typically the least costly, ranging from $15-$25. Full body pregnancy pillows range from $30-$100 depending on the shape, material used and brand. For example, some U-shaped full body pillows and C-shaped pregnancy pillows cost $50, while those that use luxury memory foam and the finest materials range from $70-$100.

Choosing the right pregnancy support pillow for yourself, at the right price, is largely dependent on your specific needs. Each pregnancy is different and comes with its own set of needs and requirements.

Next, we will go through the different types of pregnancy support pillows and demonstrate how body pillows for pregnant women can be used for much more than sleep.

Where to Buy a Pregnancy Pillow

Pregnancy Support Pillow Near Me

You can Google the phrase ‘Pregnancy Support Pillows Near Me’ and get access to a variety of local stores that have them in stock along with reviews of the options. You could even dive into Facebook’s mom groups to buy them used.


  • Seeing it in person gives you an idea about size and quality.
  • You can try them out before the actual purchase.


  • You might have to drive to the location, which can be a burden in the later stages of pregnancy.
  • Local stores and moms might not have the best return policy or may lack an extensive range of pregnancy sleep pillows.

Pregnancy Support Pillow From Amazon

You can search for a specific product or browse on until you see something you like from the world’s largest online retailer. Whether  it is pregnancy wedges, body pillows like the C-shaped pillow, or even just long pregnancy pillows you are looking for, you can be sure Amazon has them in stock.


  • Prime membership ships in 1-2 days to your door (with free returns).
  • Usually very good quality and reasonable prices.
  • A large number of customer reviews available.


  • You can’t test the pregnancy support pillow.
  • Sometimes the product appears different on the site.
  • The product may get damaged during shipping.

Pregnancy Support Pillow From Other Websites

You can also search on specific brands’ websites. This is ideal if you already have an idea about the brand that you want.


  • Access to brands that might not be on Amazon.
  • Convenience of shipping to your door.


  • It may take a long time to get your money back if you decide to return the product.
  • You cannot try the product before hand and there usually are not many reviews.

Types of Pregnancy Pillows

When it comes to pregnancy support pillows, you need to carefully evaluate your specific situation and needs to pinpoint the best pillow for you. From full body pregnancy pillows to pregnancy wedges, each pillow has its own specific attributes and advantages. A pregnancy pillow is not a case of one size fits all.

Pregnancy Wedge Pillows

Pregnancy wedge pillows are the smallest maternity sleeping pillows available. While they do not target the whole body, they are a good way of targeting specific areas that need to be propped up. Triangular and round are two shapes that pregnancy wedge pillows are available in.

U-Shaped Pregnancy Pillows

One type of full body pregnancy pillow is the U-shaped pregnancy pillow (or the U-shaped maternity pillow). Perfect for side-sleepers or those who prefer to sleep on their back but cannot due to increased body size, the U-shaped pregnancy pillow allows women to straddle one side of the U while resting their head on the curve.

C-Shaped Pregnancy Pillows

Another full body pregnancy pillow, the C shaped pillow, as the name suggests, is shaped like a giant C. It provides support to the head and neck (resting on the top of the C), the stomach and the legs (straddling the lower part of the C).

J-Shaped Pregnancy Pillows

J-shaped pregnancy pillows, much like C-shaped pillows and the U-shaped pregnancy pillows, are designed with flexibility in mind. Their ergonomic design means that they are more than just pregnancy sleeping pillows: they can be wrapped around you while sit up in bed or in a chair, ensuring comfort, a lack of strain and a release of pressure off the body.

Full-Length Pregnancy Pillows

Full-length pregnancy pillows should not be confused with full body pregnancy pillows. A full-length pillow is essentially a long pregnancy pillow that is used to cuddle up against. They do provide relief to specific body parts, much like the pregnancy pillow wedge. However, they do not provide much relief for the back because, unlike full body pregnancy pillows, there is no cushion supporting the spine.

Inflatable Pregnancy Pillows       

As pregnancy progresses, women find it increasingly impossible to sleep on their stomach. Inflatable pregnancy pillows allow you to continue to sleep in your favorite position even in your second and third trimesters. Acting as a second mattress, this is a pregnancy pillow with a hole that hugs the belly while you sleep on your stomach.

How to Use a Pregnancy Pillow?

Using a pregnancy pillow depends greatly on its type. Generally, full body pregnancy pillows—like the U-shaped pillow—are more versatile than the inflatable or pregnancy wedge pillow, but the latter is better at targeting specific areas of pain. What follows is the best way to use each of the pregnancy support pillows and a look into how they can be used for more than just sleep.

How to Use a Pregnancy Wedge Pillow

The pregnancy wedge pillow or maternity wedge pillow is ideal for relieving stress off of certain joints and muscles. It has the added benefit of not requiring that much space to use and store.

How to sleep with a pregnancy pillow like the wedge? Simply slide the pillow under the affected area or muscle to prop it up, removing the burden of weight from it.

How to Use a U-Shaped Pregnancy Pillow

The U-shaped pillow (or pregnancy U pillow) is a great full body pregnancy pillow that allows side-sleeping or sleeping on your back. The sides of the U act as a safe enclosure within which you can lie down or even sit up in.

How to sleep with a pregnancy pillow like the U-shaped pregnancy pillow? Cradle one side of the U while resting your head on the curve. One side will give support to your stomach while the other will hug your back, offering further pain alleviation.

How to Use a C-Shaped Pregnancy Pillow

The C-shaped pregnancy pillow works in pretty much the same way as does the U-shaped pillow: the rear curve of the C provides back support, while the front curves act as handles you can cuddle. Like the U-shaped pillow, the C-shaped pregnancy pillow can also be used when sitting up.

How to sleep with a pregnancy pillow like the C-shaped pregnancy pillow?  Rest in the middle, empty space of the C, using its curves to snuggle up against. Hold the sides tight to release any stress or muscle pain.

How to Use a J-Shaped Pregnancy Pillow

This is a great body pillow for pregnant women because, like the other full body pregnancy pillows, it provides great back support as well as something in front to hold onto.

How to sleep with a pregnancy pillow like the J-shaped pregnancy pillow?  Because of its flexibility, you can snuggle up to it whichever way feels most comfortable. The curves of the J will contour around your body to provide support and comfort, making it a great maternity sleeping pillow.

How to Use a Full-Length Pregnancy Pillow

Full-length pillows, like the pregnancy wedge pillows, are great at targeting specific trouble areas. This is not necessarily a pillow for pregnancy because even people who aren’t expecting use them because of the support they provide.

How to sleep with a pregnancy pillow like the full-length pregnancy pillow? Because it is essentially an extra-long pillow, they are meant to be held while you sleep. These pregnancy sleeping pillows are a great way to take pressure off the back by sleeping on the side.

How to Use an Inflatable Pregnancy Pillow

The inflatable pregnancy pillow gives you the satisfaction of sleeping face-down along with the security and comfort of an enclosure around your stomach.

How to sleep with a pregnancy pillow like the inflatable pregnancy pillow? Place it on your mattress so that it serves as a second tier. This is a pregnancy sleeping pillow with a hole that cradles your stomach while you sleep.

Final Thoughts

There is no single pillow for pregnancy that can be used universally by expecting moms. Just as each pregnancy experience is different, so are the pillows. Choosing the right pillow goes a long way in determining how to use it and to answering the question of how to sleep with a pregnancy pillow. Hopefully, our list of pregnancy support pillows and how to use them have been of some help in giving you the tips you need to choose the best one suited to you. Here’s to a good night’s rest.

By Editorial Team

NetParents is the go-to resource for all parenting issues. We are an independent body that seeks to offer general information on various parenting topics and unbiased reviews on baby products.

Related Articles