July 23, 2016
If your eye bags have become permanent facial marks, you regularly suffer heart palpitations and can’t function without caffeine, you are likely a sleep-deprived new parent. A parent loses about 350 hours of sleep during the child’s first year. New moms are not the only ones experiencing dizzying fatigue in the first few weeks and months of parenthood. The Informed Parent cites that sleep deprivation can hit new dads too as they can get less sleep and suffer more sleepiness than mothers. Sleep deprivation, it seems, is part and parcel of parenthood.
The National Sleep Foundation recommends new sleep times with a range of 12 to 15 hours to infants aged 11 months and younger and 11 to 14 hours for toddlers aged 1 to 2 years. Meanwhile, adults aged 18 to 64 are advised to get seven to nine hours of quality sleep each night. But how can you meet the required hours of rest if your little one wakes you up several times at night?
Celebrate Parents’ Day with us today as we explore 15 tips to help mom and dad get good sleep every night.
You’re an independent person able to juggle multiple tasks at once. Before you and your partner finally decided to build a family, you were aware of what you were getting yourself into. Or were you? At the end of the day, you’re only human. Accept help from your parents, in laws, siblings and even neighbors. Whether the help comes in the form of a free meal or an offer to do the dishes, you’d need every reprieve you can find.
Don’t underestimate the power of naps. Lack of sleep at night can leave you lightheaded and cranky during the day. Taking in lots of caffeine to stay awake and alert can only lead to heart palpitations. These power naps may not compensate for lost hours at night, but these can refresh your mind and body.
Coffee keeps you alert especially when you barely get any shuteye the night before. Although caffeine is effective for all-nighters, it won’t help when you’re trying to catch naps whenever you can. Brew a pot of tea instead to help calm down your nerves. Chamomile tea is also a natural sleeping aid that eases insomnia, boosts the immune system and helps relieve pain.
While it’s true that your newborn needs your attention 24/7, you also need to catch hours of sleep. There are new technologies to help you keep an ear on your kids, anyways.
Aspire for quality sleep with a bedroom space of your own. Choose a comfortable mattress that will support your body well, alleviate pressure points and prevent bed sores. Consider the mattress technology of the Perfect Serenity Chimera. It features a convoluted foam that is designed to let air flow freely while you lie on your bed. Not only is it comfortable, it feels breezy – helping your body to cool off and fall asleep faster.
It seems simple – your baby sleeps soundly, you get better sleep. The next question is how do you ensure your child sleeps well at night? First, make sure that the room temperature is conducive for sleeping. Studies found that a room temperature of 18 degrees Celsius is recommended for sleep. Next, ensure that your infant is using a comfortable mattress, pillows and blankets. Be sure to use a medium firm mattress for your child as it help promote good posture while they sleep.
Your living room sofa is not designed for sleeping. Sleep, or even naps, will come rarely during the first few weeks and months of your child, so make the most of these opportunities. Lie down on comfortable foam and mattresses that will gently cradle you to good sleep.
There’s no point in trying to maintain the appearance of your home at least in the first months of parenthood. Stop beating yourself up for this. Instead, embrace the fact that you need to have strategies for better sleep and this primarily involves catnaps. If your baby falls asleep easily in the living room, get a sofa bed or bring his crib from his room.
Another effective way to help mom and dad sleep during these tough times is to block street noises and other outdoor disturbances. This Parents’ Day, why not gift them with a white noise machine that filters out distracting noises?
Vitamin D plays a role in maintaining our body’s normal sleep-wake cycle. You can forget about your usual bedtime hours until your kid turns 2. But don’t worry. There are sleep hacks that can protect you from the adverse effects of sleep deprivation.
In the morning, preferably at the break of dawn, spend about 10 minutes under the sun for your dose of vitamin D. This vitamin also helps in the production of the sleep hormone melatonin. Sun exposure is good for infants too, so bring the stroller with you.
How can parents get better sleep? Drink lots of water. Water makes up 85% of our brain and “dehydration can have very serious neurological effects and disrupt cognitive functioning”, according to Dr. Joseph Cilona. Drinking at least eight glasses of water everyday allows the brain to work best while you’re sleeping, leaving you fully rejuvenated in the morning.
The laundry basket is overflowing and the garden needs weeding job. Again, you’re not a superhero so stop stressing over these household tasks when you should be getting naps. One of the survival tips for mom and dad on their first months as parents is to schedule these tasks on weekends when they’re both present at home. Help is much needed during this period so welcome family and friends offering to babysit while you do the laundry.
Most sleep tips for parents concentrate on the hows – how to fall asleep easily, how to get seven to nine hours of uninterrupted sleep, etc. However, the fact remains that you’re most likely to suffer from sleep deprivation as along as your infant needs your ‘round-the-clock attention. Catch naps as often as you can, eat a balanced diet and take supplements. Consult your doctor for advice.
Typically, an infant wakes up after a couple of hours, immediately eats, plays for a while, then falls back to sleep. Don’t overtire your baby in hopes that he’ll sleep longer. The result is the contrary: overstimulation can lead to difficulty in falling asleep and staying asleep. Once you notice signs of sleepiness, cradle your baby to sleep and prepare to get some rest yourself.
Helping your baby sleep better means you get better rest as well. Some tips for new parents include the use of a swaddle, which prevents infants from waking themselves due to their startle reflex, feeding before you go to bed to ensure your child sleeps longer while you sleep, and limiting your baby’s daytime naps to a maximum of 2.5 hours.
Exercise helps the body maintain its normal clock. During the first weeks of your child, it’ll be virtually impossible to hit the gym. Your schedule, hopefully, will lighten up as your child’s sleeping habits improve. However, this doesn’t mean that you need to wait for months to get active again. You can do yoga poses and aerobic routines in the comfort of your home.
Being a parent is a full time job. Now that you’ve embarked on this lifetime journey, savor each moment and remember to get quality sleep as your body needs it. With help from the family and the sleep care products that Uratex Foam Philippines offers, you can truly give the best to your fam