If you are a new parent, you probably know that frequent diaper changes, feedings, and everything associated with having a baby can make it almost impossible to sleep soundly at night. While it might be challenging to take care of yourself if you have a newborn, ensuring that you get enough sleep should always be a priority.
If you get enough sleep, you will be better able to fulfill your new responsibilities of caring for your baby. You will tend to be more patient and more likely to have a positive view of the world of parenting. Here are some tried and tested strategies to catch some extra sleep if you are a new parent:
Sleep While the Baby is Sleeping
Newborn’s love taking naps that last anywhere from 2 to 4 hours, for a total of anywhere from 16 to 18 hours of sleep every day. New parents usually suffer from severe sleep deprivation if the only sleep they get is overnight.
While sleeping while the baby is asleep might sometimes be a challenge due to the presence of other children in the house or because of your internal body clock, it is still a good idea to try and get at least some rest.
Skip Household Chores
Opt for sleep instead of loading the dishwasher or vacuuming. Family and friends will probably be more understanding than you may realize of why your house is in a mess. Besides, they are visiting to see the baby. So, don’t be afraid to leave the dishes used for dinner in the sink for the next morning.
Share Nighttime Baby Duties
Nighttime baby duties such as diaper changes, feedings, and others should be shared between you and your partner can share. Breastfeeding mothers can pump breast milk so that their spouse can give the bottle to the baby at night thus allowing the mother to get some more sleep.
Move the Crib Close to the Bed
If you move the baby’s crib or bassinet right next to your bed, it becomes much easier to tend to the baby before going back to sleep, making for a more restful night. While you might be tempted to co-sleep in the same bed with the baby, the American Academy of Pediatrics advises against this due to the risk of suffocation.
Ask Family and Friends for Help
You shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help from family and friends, whether it is sweeping the floor, picking up groceries, or even holding the baby while you name. Family and friends may also be willing to help at night with feedings and diaper changes.
Take Advantage of Parental Leave
While employer policies on parental leave may vary, both parents are sometimes able to take time off work, thus allowing them to juggle baby care responsibilities more easily and leading to more sleep. For instance, the mother may take time off work immediately after the baby is born, her partner can take leave several weeks later, thus helping her get some sleep while transitioning back to work.
Practice Proper Sleep Hygiene
Good sleep hygiene can actually help you get more rest, whether you have a newborn at home or not. Popular strategies include the following:
– Avoiding Caffeine: Caffeine is a stimulant that will interfere with your sleep cycle.
– Avoid Using Electronics Before Going to Bed: You might want to post the most recent pictures of the baby on social media, but using computers, tablets, and mobile phones at night can interfere with total sleep time since the light emitted by these devices may confuse your body clock.
– Upgrade Your Mattress: There has never been a better time to make sure that you have the most comfortable mattress. Read these Nectar Mattress reviews.
– Stick to a Regular Sleep Schedule: While that might sound difficult, especially for new parents, it is still important to try to sleep and wake up at the same time each day. Just remember that with a baby, you have to be flexible and expect nighttime awakenings.