Oh sleep, there’s nothing like a good rest to reset your body and mind. A necessity for the human body to function properly! So what happens when we are deprived of it?
Monique sent me a few stats as it’s “Sleep Support Month” a couple of weeks ago which shot me right back to the newborn phase of having my son. Flash backs of being a zombie quickly entered my mind. Those few months feel like they will never pass and are different for all new parents.
The theme song to law and order svu still gives me shivers because it was this time of day that it would get dark and I knew I’d be in for a restless night so anxiety would set in.
Here’s what Snuz discovered in their latest research
“With the majority of parents losing over one third of a year’s sleep – the realities of parental sleep deprivation cannot be ignored.
The recent survey, which was commissioned by Snüz, the brand committed to creating ideas for happy sleep, questioned more than 1,300 parents, who shared their personal experiences. Nearly half of them (44%) felt massively unsupported when it came to their baby’s sleep.
In a separate poll, Snüz chatted to its army of 82k+ parents across Instagram to find out how they truly feel about the first year of sleep! When questioned about their baby not sleeping, 88% admitted to this being a cause of stress, while 77% talked about the anxiety they feel even before bedtime starts as they anticipate a sleepless night. Alongside these emotions, 65% of those questioned said they often felt lonely when up late with their newborn” source – Mark Nicholls, Marketing Director at Snüz
I’m speaking from my own experience, so here’s the things I learned about functioning on empty, maybe you can relate.
- it’s important to have some sort of support system. In my case, I found it hard when breastfeeding because there was literally no one else to feed the baby and pumping at the beginning is difficult until you have a good supply. At the beginning my husband would still get up with me for the feeds and he would change his nappy which would help. As time went on and he was feeding at a more consistent pattern, I was able to pump and take turns feeding. I also started to add a bottle of formula once a day or when I had no pumped milk.
- Sleep when the baby sleeps is not realistic, sometimes you just want to sit in silence, awake and alone… even though you’re exhausted it’s still bliss. But if this is possible for you it can help catch up.
- Some of the best advice I got was to lower my expectations in regards to cooking and cleaning. It’s ok for the house to be upside down and it’s ok if you’ve had more than a few takeaways that week! You do what you need to do.
- Limiting social media and posts (like this one probably) is something I would highly recommend… reading posts in “perfect parents” groups, especially on no sleep can really alter your mood and make you feel down. Remember we are all on personal journeys and what’s posted online is a fragment of someone’s life.
- Something I wish I had done was batch cook a few freezer meals like lasagnes and shepherds pies before I was due. I feel like I would’ve made great use out of having dinners to just throw in the oven
- Accept help if you need it. If someone offers to clean or cook for you, don’t be embarrassed. They most likely know exactly what you are going through and want to help.
- Shower! One of the greatest pleasures in the newborn phase is hot water running down your back and feeling clean! Even just 2 minutes can change your mood and help you sleep better.
- Try get out as much as you can for little walks. It will do you and baby good and help with sleep for both
- Caffeine… enough said
There’s no magic recipe or crib or Moses basket or swing that will guarantee to make your baby a better sleeper… they are figuring it out and that’s just how it is. It passes and you’ll miss it. The above experiences might help you a bit.
You are all doing amazing and remember, ask for help when needed and most importantly go easy on yourself ❤️❤️❤️