Woman's Sleeping Position May Affect Stillbirth Risk

Those who lie on their left side have less risk, study suggests
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 15, 2011 12:45 PM CDT

(Newser) – A British study suggests that women who sleep on their left side on the last night of pregnancy have less risk of giving birth to a stillborn child, reports the Guardian. The researchers were quick to say their study in the British Medical Journal is only the "starting point for future research" and not a definitive piece of medical advice. "It would be premature to jump up and down and say that everyone has got to sleep on their left," says the lead researcher.

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In the study of 155 women, those who slept on their left side the night before giving birth had a risk of 1.96 per 1,000 births of having a stillborn child. Women who slept on their right side or on their back had a risk of 3.93 per 1,000 births. One theory: Sleeping on the left side allows improved blood flow to the fetus, notes HealthDay News. (Read more sleep stories.)

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