As a mom with a newborn, the frequent feeding, changing and tending to your baby can make getting quality sleep a tall order. In fact, new parents get less than 5 hours of sleep per night, according to an article published by the Independent, a British online news publisher. While the first few months can be quite challenging and exhausting, you can still get beat sleep deprivation while being the best mom and without neglecting your baby. Below are 5 tips that can help you and your newborn get your much needed quality sleep.
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help
Having a newborn means you need all the help you can, so don’t be afraid to accept or ask for it. Let your family members handle some of your household responsibilities, like house chores and running errands. Instead of playing host when your friends come to visit, ask them to help watch the baby as you take a quick nap.
You and your partner can also share the responsibility of feeding and changing the baby at night so that you can get that extra shut-eye. If you breastfeed, you can pump breast milk before bedtime and leave the bottle to your partner or family member for when the baby needs to feed. Help from friends and family will help take the pressure off your back and allow you to get the rest and sleep that you need.
Keep Your Newborn Close
Keeping your baby close helps you bond with the child and fosters a sense of security in your little one. When it comes to aiding your sleep, keeping your young one close makes it easy for you to quickly tend to your baby at night and go back to sleep. This is because you won’t need to walk around when checking on your baby, which may disrupt your sleep. The best way to do this is to keep your baby’s crib or bassinet next to your bed. It is not advisable to share the same bed with your baby as this poses a risk of suffocating your little one.
Rest Whenever You Can
While it may be easier said than done, you should always take a rest whenever you can. Keep off additional responsibilities and delegate duties as much as possible so you can have time for yourself. Since it can be challenging to sleep during the night, daytime naps can make up for the lost night’s sleep.
Regardless of the time of day, take advantage of when your little one is asleep to catch a quick nap and keep away postpartum sleep deprivation. Even if you are not sleeping, lie down and rest instead of catching up with your favourite TV show or friends, or worrying about house chores. Lying down for at least 30 minutes can be very therapeutic and leave you energetic and rejuvenated. Put your phone on silent during this time for minimum disturbance.
Create The Perfect Sleeping Environment for You and Your Baby
Your sleeping environment can have a significant impact on your ability to get quality sleep. To help you and your baby sleep well, create a relaxing sleeping environment so you can fall asleep quickly. Ensure that your bedroom is cool, dark and quiet to prevent extreme temperatures and noise from disrupting your sleep.
Also, keep your bedroom dark when you want to sleep by using heavy curtains and switching off light as bright light triggers wakefulness. Get a dim portable nightlight that you can use whenever so you don’t have to switch on the bright bedroom lights when feeding your baby at night. This way, you can easily fall back asleep right after. Lastly, choose the right mattress from your local mattress store and beddings for a comfortable and restful sleep.
Engage in Sleep-Inducing Activities
If you are finding it hard to sleep even after a long tiring day, sleep-inducing activities can help you sleep. Avoid drinking too much caffeine as it is a stimulant, and keep off your computer or TV when trying to refresh. This is because the blue light from the screen will stimulate your brain and make falling asleep harder.
Instead, take a warm bath, listen to soothing and calming music, or audiobooks, or read a book to help you relax and drift off. You can also set sometime for morning walks with your newborn to reset your circadian rhythm after a sleepless night, or practice yoga and meditation before bedtime. As for the baby, rocking your little one back and forth or administering infant massage can help the baby go to sleep.
The above tips can boost your sleep and improve your overall quality of life so you can adequately take care of yourself and your little. Don’t hesitate to talk to your doctor if naps don’t revive you as it may signify deeper sleeping problems.