Sleep deprivation can have a dreadful impact on a new mom’s mental health.
This is why sleep for new moms is just as important as it is for new babies. Between round the clock feedings and pain from postpartum recovery, sleep for new moms may seem impossible and often, it is. But when you consider the detrimental effects it could have on a woman’s mental health, then sacrificing other things in an effort to improve sleep for new moms is worth it.
This guest post from writer, Sarah Cummings, details some adjustments that can be made to make sure that new moms are getting the sleep they desperately need.
Sleep is a necessity and we have to get enough to function properly. This is something parents will be praying they can achieve when the newborn arrives on the scene!
New parents are more than likely going to lose sleep with the change in sleep patterns and disturbances in the night, etc. However, with the right structure and routines in place, you can ensure that as a new mom you’re enjoying the best sleep you can in both the short-term and in the long-run.
How much sleep is enough?
The National Sleep Foundation states that newborn babies should sleep between 12 and 18 hours each day, whereas the average adult needs to accumulate between seven and nine hours each evening.
This might seem like an unattainable number as a new parent, but this is the recommended daily amount to function normally, so it’s best to get the good measures in place as soon as you can so that you can all enjoy sound slumber!
Download a sleep tracker to keep track of how much sleep you’re getting!
You can simply start by following these top tips on the best bedtime habits that will help you and baby:
Re-associate yourself with sleep and know its worth
Remember the days when you used to wake up feeling fresh as a daisy? Yeah, well, those days might have changed a little now that you have a little one in the house, but that’s not to say that you can’t get close to it with the right ideas in place.
You know when you’ve had a good sleep because everything you do seem like much less effort and you have the energy to deal with what life throws at you.
It’s important to bear in mind that there’s not a healthy way of replacing sleep; there’s only so many chamomile teas you can have before bed! The benefits of sleep are there for all to see, and one of your first jobs should be to remove the thought process that cutting out anything other than what you need to be healthy is acceptable.
So, while you’re teaching your baby the good habits of restful sleep, you should be endorsing and reiterating this with yourself too. Ensure that you practice what you preach and you will see the upside to being well-rested. It might be easier said than done, but practice makes perfect.
Create a bedtime routine to look forward to
Okay so, bedtime is a really good way for both you and your baby to start to take things down a few notches. After the hectic day you’ve been having, now start thinking about the things you need to do to send the right signals to the brain that sleep is on the horizon.
Humans have a built-in love for routine and the earlier that you can instill this routine with your child, the better, as they will sense that the routine is not there once they have it and the chances are they will make you aware of it!
A good thing to do to help you relax and have baby unwind too is to set aside some time in which you relax together in a tranquil environment. Young children certainly need this type of thing in their lives and you’ll be able to indulge too.
You know when your little one is tired and ready for bed, and this might not have been your bedtime a few years ago, but it might as well be now, so, go with it because you’re going to be waking up earlier than before anyway. Sleep is vital, so get what you can; you never know, your precious one might even give you those hallowed eight hours!
Sleep when your baby sleeps
As we mentioned, if you take the gift your child gives you to sleep, grab it with both hands. Any experienced parent will confirm with you that the key to fending off postpartum sleep deprivation is to get some shut-eye when your baby dozes off.
If your baby takes a nap, put everything else on hold and take a well-earned nap too. there’s nothing that can’t wait, apart from a waking baby that needs attention, of course.
Laundry, phone calls, checking social media, washing up, catch up on episodes of your favorite Netflix series; it can all wait, because sleep has a vital role in keeping you healthy and defends against the risk of sleep deprivation.
Don’t disregard the baby blues
Lack of sleep can bring on changes in your mood, and new moms are often at risk of what’s known as baby blues or the more serious postpartum depression. If you are feeling some of these symptoms, we advise you to seek the advice of your doctor so that you can deal with the problem before it gets any worse.
Hello! My name is Sarah Cummings. I’ve been involved in writing informative and helpful guides for the last five years now. Originally, my passion to help others was the overriding factor to become a writer, but now I feel like I’m learning more everyday too!
My love of exercise has always been a big part of how I lead my life, and I find it helps with lots of things, including sleep. I’m an advocator of promoting sleep and how it can be the difference between living a good, fulfilled life and an unhappy one.
I have had the good fortune to have a long and spiritual background in yoga too, and I feel as though this pairs perfectly with my passion for healthy eating and leading an active lifestyle.
I enjoy learning and coming up with new ways to develop my writing so that I can help others to grow and learn too. When I have a spare morning, you can catch me gazing at sunrises from different places on the planet!