Tips to actually get some sleep in uncomfortable hospital beds?
Having c/s & SPD & trouble sleeping anyway!
, Sep 06 2009 10:19 PM
31 replies to this topic
Posted 06 September 2009 - 10:19 PM
This will probably make me sound like a spoilt, whingey person but I'm actually afraid I won't get any sleep in hospital.
Yesterday I stayed overnight in a public hospital (single bed) due to food poisoning and because I have severe SPD & backache plus was hooked up to an IV I slept maybe 3 hours total broken into 15 min intervals. The bed was too short and had that board at the end so feet can't even hang over. My arms were hanging out the sides and getting pins & needles. The mattress was really hard which made my SPD and backache a million times worse.
And while I was awake most of the night I kept thinking how I'll go through 6 nights of this after a scheduled c/s. For the birth I'm booked into Knox Private Vic and they have queen size beds at least.
So I guess I'm asking what others have done or are planning to do to get a better night sleep in hospital. Can you take your own pillows etc? I think I'd at least take my body pillow.
Posted 06 September 2009 - 10:23 PM
For the birth I'm booked into Knox Private Vic and they have queen size beds at least.
I thought that for c/s you needed to stay in a hospital bed for medical reasons and not a "normal" bed.
Oh and I would be asking for sleeping tablets if it is as bad as you described.
Posted 06 September 2009 - 10:26 PM
I took my boomerang pillow in (after an overnight stay introduced me to their rock-hard pillows!) and a cot size quilt - which was enough to give me some extra warmth.
If need be, maybe you could buy one of those underblankets or something to sleep on - you can always use it at home afterwards.
Posted 06 September 2009 - 10:29 PM
They told me during the hospital tour that I have to spend the first night in a normal hospital bed and then get transferred to a room with queens size bed. I hope that's right.
The underlay idea sounds great. I'll look into that.
Posted 06 September 2009 - 10:30 PM
I have had 2 c/s and I only spent one night in a hospital bed (which was terrible!) and the rest of my stay was in a QS bed in a suite. I slept fine, as fine as you can getting up & down to feed a newborn LOL!
Posted 06 September 2009 - 10:30 PM
Your own pillow.. and I always flip the board thing at the end of the bed over.... turns into an extra table type thing when you do that
(well on all the hospital beds I've been in, anyway!)
Posted 06 September 2009 - 10:35 PM
I knew I should have asked the nurse. The board think looked like it could be folded down. Stupid. But good to know for next time.
Posted 06 September 2009 - 10:36 PM
Whatever drugs they're giving out, ask for a double!
Posted 06 September 2009 - 10:39 PM
I think I might be weird....I LOVE hospital beds. That said, I've only ever been on the ones in the birthing unit so maybe that's why?
The only thing I insist on is my own pillow
Posted 06 September 2009 - 10:42 PM
Sorry, couldn't help myself, I just spent 3 nights in hospital after getting surgery for a broken ankle that I got falling down the stairs holding my DS (he's fine)
I'd go with the thing of having your own pillow and maybe a bit of an essential oil that calms you. Regardless of the bed I think your sleep will probably be pretty disturbed due to all of the new hormones whizzing round your body plus a twitchy newborn. I am assuming your baby will be rooming in with you as it seems to be common practice. If one of the midwives offers to take baby for a few hours to give you a break, take her up on the offer! That and having a husband who slept in a chair holding DS for 3 nights straight were my saving grace. If I wasn't looking after DS or visitors I tended to nap a lot as I was so knackered from the birth. I didn't worry about what time of day it was, just went for it. I figure the baby doesn't know day from night at this point, so if my routine went a little out the window as well that was ok.
Posted 06 September 2009 - 10:48 PM
Thanks heaps for all your answers. I felt so stupid asking a question like this.
I was actually going to request not getting morphine because it made me so sleepy I could barely feed bubs but maybe I'll change my mind about that.
I know my sleep won't be the best but I guess I'm hoping to catch a few hours here and there in between feeds etc and not lay awake when I could be sleeping.
Edited by biene_maja, 06 September 2009 - 11:04 PM.
Posted 06 September 2009 - 10:57 PM
I'm a nurse and I always try to put an blanket underneath the bottom sheet on the bed for pregnant ladies, or old people. I was a patient in hospital earlier this year and the plastic mattress made me sweat like nothing I'd ever sweated before, the blanket underneath though did the trick.
Other tips- your own pillow and depending on you personally, but I would take my own rug/blanket too, but I would advise that you put them through the wash when you get home... lots of nasty infections live in hospitals unfortunately. I would also take rubber thongs to shower in so you don't get tinea.
Good luck! Hope you're feeling better soon!
Posted 06 September 2009 - 11:03 PM
I'm a total hospital bed wuss. I'm going to take my light weight king size doona and my own pillow. If I end up in a single bed on the ward for any reason then I'll lay the doona underneath me and then fold it over the top so I have an extra layer of padding underneath me
Posted 06 September 2009 - 11:04 PM
Another vote for drugs. Strong and often
Posted 06 September 2009 - 11:07 PM
More great ideas. I'm kind of glad I'm not the only wuzz/fussy sleeper in here.
I've just googled essential oils & electric burners. I think I might try that too and I've got doonas I could fold over and put underneath sheets. I'm really starting to feel better. Thanks so much everyone.
Posted 06 September 2009 - 11:12 PM
If you have a piece of sheepskin/skeepskin rub, thats always good to sit on when in bed during the day-nice and soft. (I don't have kids, so have no idea how this would go post birth-but its sure helped when I was in hospital). You can also buy a lavender linen spray to spray on your pillow to help you relax and drift off.
Posted 06 September 2009 - 11:17 PM
I left hospital earlier than I wanted too because the bed was hurting esp where my stitches were (sorry tmi) I found surfboard pads were good for extra padding in that area at night.
I think hospital beds are the governments way of economising, people leave because their hips and back are sore from a too hard mattress and they are exausted from lack of sleep so go home to recover instead.
Posted 06 September 2009 - 11:20 PM
I had severe SPD as well and it never bothered me from immediately after both my births. Amazing that it can be so excruiating and then gone!
Posted 06 September 2009 - 11:28 PM
After my CS I would have found a QS bed awful, I really needed the railing of the hospital bed (one side was up) to help me sit up, shift about in bed and get in/out. Even after a week in hospital I struggled with getting in/out of the bed at home for at least a week or so.
Both times I took my own pillow and a big lambskin to lie on as I find the plastic covers on the hospital bedding make me really hot and I perspire endlessly otherwise. I also needed a fan after the CS (different hospital with more efficient cooling second time around)
Posted 06 September 2009 - 11:35 PM
Take your own pillow. If you have a sheepskin take one for under the bottom sheet. If not, use hospital towels. Basically you need a layer of something non-plasticy to counter the waterproof mattress covers they have that get really really sweaty.
When travelling or going to hospital, I always put a patterned or brightly coloured pillow case on my pillow so it doesn't get mixed up with motel/hospital ones. If your linen at home is expensive designer label, just drop down to your local op shop and pick a couple up.
Oh and if you get cold, ask them to get you a blanket from the warmer (there will be one in delivery) and put it under the other blankets next to your skin. Blanket warmers are such a fabulous invention I almost wish we had one at home!!
Edited by s-m, 06 September 2009 - 11:37 PM.
Posted 07 September 2009 - 01:18 AM
The beds in the Risby Unit at Knox are great, in fact most of the beds are. You sound as though you were on a bed that they utilise for day surgery (more like a trolley) when you were in as your arms would not hang over the sides of a proper hospital bed.
You will be in a normal bed for the first night, the mattresses have a special cover that add comfort to the patient and are really very comfy and roomy. You will be able to adjust the bed to your own comfort but as PP's have said, it is good to take your own pillow or pillows because for some reason pillows always seem to be in short supply in all hospitals----(they think some of them go home with the patients)
The Queen beds are great, they are also fully adjustable for height and the back and footrest.
Wishing you a wonderful experience.
Posted 07 September 2009 - 08:51 AM
Earplugs - in the event that you manage to get to sleep, a set of earplugs may help with staying asleep. I have had 2 admissions recently and couldn't have slept without them, due to trolleys rattling past, cleaners, babies crying in the distance, a snoring woman in the next room (or in your room if you have to share), toilets flushing etc etc. When DS was born, I found I was still able to hear him cry when wearing them.
Posted 07 September 2009 - 09:25 AM
Oh yes I second the ear plugs!
I got next to no sleep after my c/s so this time will be using some of these ideas. Wouldn't have realised about picking up bugs though, I might take an old pillow and throw it away afterwards.
Posted 07 September 2009 - 04:31 PM
I sleep with earplugs every night anyway because DH snores.
I'll definitly take them with me. I know I'll still hear bubs but just not every background noise.
After last night's suggestions I put a pretty thick doona on my bed and slept on it. It made quite a difference to my SPD so I think I'll take that with me.
I know the SPD is likely to go away after c/s but I'll have other pains instead.
Oh and thanks soontobegran about all the first hand knowledge of Knox Private. It's good to know the beds are pretty good.
Edited by biene_maja, 07 September 2009 - 04:33 PM.
Posted 07 September 2009 - 06:15 PM
Go home to your own bed after the first day or so?
Plenty of friends and family have done it. Why would you want to be cooped up for 6 days in a hospital instead of being with your family?
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