The happiest moment in the life of a couple is to hold their little one in their hands and be bowled over by their just born baby’s adorable smile. However, to reach at that stage a lot of patience and hard work is needed. It is not an easy job to handle pregnancy as the new mommy will have a lot of bodily as well as mood changes. This can lead to irritation and stress too. As a husband or a family member, you need to make sure that you help the new mommy get through it and make her experience a beautiful one.
The other word for parenthood is sleepless nights. This is relatively true as taking care of a newborn is a lot of hard work, especially for mothers and it often results in sleepless nights or only a couple of hours of sleep some days. It can be quite challenging for new mothers to cope up with the daily routine, caring for the baby and also managing the family if she is sleep deprived and can make her really tired and frustrated. Being sleep deprived can also impact the emotional and physical well being of the mother and its necessary to help her get enough sleep.
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Sleep is very vital for the proper functioning of your brain and body. So here are the 6 most important reasons why new mommies must get more sleep:
Reason #1: She’ll Be More Alert
It’s quite obvious that the better you sleep at night, the more alert you are during the daytime. According to some studies, missing out sleep even as less as 1 or 1 1.2 hours during the night can decrease the alertness by 30 %. In that case, new mommies will have only about 40-50 % alertness during the day if they miss about 3-4 hours of sleep each day.
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Reason #2: She’ll Be Less Prone To Accidents and Injury
Another risk associated with sleep deprivation is being vulnerable to injury and accidents, at home, workplace or on the road. Experts opine that drunk driving is similar to driving while drowsy and both are dangerous for the mother. New mothers must get a good night’s sleep to prevent feeling drowsy and tired during the ay time. This is especially important if the woman has other children or family to attend and need to drive the kids to school and back or get groceries etc.
Reason #3: Adequate Sleep Can Help Prevent Low Milk Supply
Insufficient sleep can also cause low breast milk production in mothers and this will only add to her existing problems as the baby will be hungry and cranky all day long. To add to her troubles, a low milk supply can also have other repercussions in the long run. The last thing a mother wants is low milk supply and the inability to fulfill her baby’s hunger. So it’s the responsibility of the spouse or the family members to help the new mother get proper sleep.
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Reason #4: She’ll Be Less Irritable And Grumpy
Being sleep deprived for many days in a row can really make the mother feel exhausted, irritable, cranky, frustrated and flat and can make it really difficult for her to manage the household chores and also the day long baby care. At times, she may be angry or snappy and it’s quite understandable after losing so many hours of sleep. Once the partner or spouse, helps her with some chores or creates some time for the mother to get a few hours of sleep, the frustration and grumpiness will fade away.
Reason #5: She’ll have A Better Relationship with You
Being sleep deprived can have a huge impact on the productivity and mothers may feel the drag and work lesser or spend lesser time with the family or the husband or the other kids. This can affect the relationship. Her moods and frustrations due to lack of sleep can also lead to arguments, or fights and worsen her mood. This may also make the mommies sad and depressed, which she should not be, as mothers need to enjoy their parenting days and cherish these moments. It’s the duty of her family or partner and people around the new mother, to help her with the chores and make her get enough sleep for her to be fresh, active and in good spirits.
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Reason #6: She’ll have lesser chances of developing post delivery depression
Over the time, gradual sleep deprivation can result in depression among women. Sleep needs to be adequate otherwise it will not only mess with her mood but will also make her uninterested and upset on a daily basis. She will also not be able to care for the emotional and physical needs of the baby properly. So you should look for signs and make sure that the new mommy can manage as much sleep as she can.
How can you get more sleep?
There are some quick tips to get hold of sleep if you are a new mommy and you should follow them instead of taking them lightly:
Do not wait for the weekends
Do not think you can compensate for the entire week’s missing sleep on a single day. Your brain woes not work like that. Instead, go for quick naps and shut your eyes in between for some time. This will help you unwind and make you cheat your brain sometimes. You can also take a quick nap while having a bubble bath. Even a good 30 minutes nap can work wonders for your tired self.
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Make an alternate routine with your partner:
All partners should remember that having a baby not just makes a women a new mommy but also makes them a new daddy. So sharing a bit of load will help you both. Make a routine where each parent alternately attends the baby if they wake up at odd hours or midnight. This will help you become a part of your baby’s life and develop a precious paternal bond.
Eat something that is easily digestible:
It is always advisable that you should eat well before going to bed and something that is light on your stomach. This will help you get to sleep faster and much more comfortably.
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Follow a sleep ritual:
You should make your bodies used to a particular time of sleeping and waking up. This means that you should follow a sleep ritual that creates a body clock and automatically adjusts your body to follow those timings. Doing the same thing before bedtime makes your brain realize that it is time for you to sleep.
A warm shower or a massage:
There is nothing more relaxing than taking a warm shower before bed as it instantly helps you to ease all the muscle tension that has been accumulated after your hectic day. It will relieve you from all the body pains and aches so that you can tuck yourself in faster. Even an oil massage works the same way.
Do not drink too much of caffeine:
You should try to avoid caffeine as much as you can if you are a new mommy. This is not easy as the entire day you have to work without sleeping so you definitely need a bit of caffeine in your system to keep you on your toes. Do not make it too strong and strictly avoid having it after evening so that it does not hamper your sleep cycle.
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Call your relatives to keep a watch:
You know your life will be sorted if you have your friends and relatives coming to pay you visits frequently. You can ask them to look after your baby while you take a quick bath or sleep. There is no need for shame in this as they are your loved ones and they will try to make your task easier by helping as much as they can from their sides.
Sleep while your baby sleeps instead of doing household chores:
Right now making your house look spotlessly clean should definitely not be your priority. Intead, you should try to get some sleep while your baby is sleeping as this will help you to get energized too.
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Miss that television serial:
You should know that your decision of watching your favourite serial instead of sleeping when you could would definitely turn out to be one of the decisions you will regret later on. So invest your time for sleep instead of the tv.
Feed your baby well before sleeping:
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Though the mother has to do the majority of the caring, it’s the duty of the family members to cater to the needs of the mother and make sure that she is getting enough sleep, food and relaxation. The fathers, especially need to divide the responsibilities so that the mothers can also enjoy a few uninterrupted nights of sleep to be a happy and healthy mother.