Becoming a new parent means entering a world of surprising and exciting changes, starting with having a bundle of joy now as part of your daily life. Of course, this comes with new responsibilities in caring for them, and the sudden lifestyle change often causes parents to become sleep-deprived. If left unchecked, this lack of sleep can cause serious health issues and, for mummies, lead to poor emotional health that reduces their milk supply. While your baby’s nighttime fussiness and feedings may be unavoidable, there are plenty of ways to get the rest you need to consistently recharge after having a baby.
1. Nap when your baby naps
Experts advise taking a nap during your little one’s nap time and avoiding pushing yourself to be productive whenever your hands are free. Although this may prove challenging with the number of chores that need attention, 20- to 30-minute power naps can help you feel refreshed without waking up all groggy and feeling out of it.
If your child doesn’t follow a regular nap schedule, take advantage of friends and relatives willing to help with your baby duties, so you can get some much-needed energising sleep.
2. Set yourself up for a good sleep
Going to sleep faster is one of the best ways to get a good night’s rest, and this is best achieved by avoiding things like eating a big dinner, doing stressful tasks in the evening, and drinking caffeine six hours before bedtime.
Make sure your room is dark, quiet, and comfortably cool, and feel free to try out any sort of sleep ritual that helps you doze off quicker, like taking a bath or reading a book.
3. Stick to a healthy lifestyle
Staying active and eating a balanced diet are the two primary ways to maintain energy levels, whether you’re a parent or not. Nutritious foods boost your metabolism, and a healthy breakfast of fruit, veggies, and whole grains is the best way to start your day and keep you fueled for the rest of it.
Dehydration can also influence your tiredness, so drink lots of water and avoid excessive caffeine to overcome fatigue as it ruins your sleep cycle.
4. Turn down the baby monitor
Newborn babies are active sleepers, and their whimpering and groaning at night is rarely a cause to leap out of bed. When they reach six months old, most babies can sleep for seven to eight hours straight. Thus, encourage your little ones to go back to sleep by themselves at night rather than cry out for you by putting them to bed while they’re awake.
5. Ask for help when you need it
Parenting can be really overwhelming at times, so don’t hesitate to ask your partner, a relative, or a friend for help with household tasks or childcare whenever you need a breather. Be clear about what you want help with and outsource whenever you can to retain a balanced lifestyle.
Many parents would agree that losing a bit of sleep is part and parcel of parenthood, especially in the first few months after childbirth. However, with the right strategies and extra help, getting back those hours of precious sleep is never impossible!
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