How to get sleep as a new parent
It’s not always easy to catch some sleep when you have a baby
Written by spunout
Fact checked by experts and reviewed by young people.
When you have a new baby, getting a good night’s sleep will be one of the biggest challenges to your wellbeing. With your little one waking up 5 times a night for feedings or changings, there are many things that will keep you up at night when you’re a new parent.
However, it’s so important to look after yourself when you’re a new parent. You might be eager to put your baby first in everything, but don’t let this mean that you neglect your own needs to do so. Sleep is one of the most important, basic requirements that you need to stay physically and mentally healthy, so it’s important to try to get all the shut-eye you need. Here are some top tips for getting as much sleep as possible when you have a new baby.
Tips on getting to sleep as a new parent
With some simple changes, you can improve your sleeping patterns.
Adjust your sleep schedule to match your baby’s
It’ll take a little time and practice to master this, but if you go to sleep at the same time as your baby, your chances of getting some good sleep are higher. This includes naps too – if your baby dozes off in the afternoon, take this as your chance to fall asleep too.
Accept all the help you can get
If your Mam, Dad, friend or sibling offers to look after the baby for a few hours, let them! You may worry about imposing but don’t – they’re asking to help because they genuinely want to, and the sleep you can get during your few hours off will make you feel a million times better!
When you go for feedings in the middle of the night, avoid checking your phone or turning on the TV
When feeding your baby in the middle of the night, you may want to pass the time by checking Facebook on your phone or flicking through the TV, but you’re best to avoid this! Looking at a screen late at night seriously affects your sleep, and it may take you much longer to doze off if you do this.
Make your baby’s bedtime the same every night
If you put your baby down at the same time every night, they’re more likely to sleep for longer during the night, which gives you some crucial extra snoozing time. Also, try to stick to the same routine and order. For instance, give your baby their bath at the same time, and read them a story at the same time.
It’s ok to wait a few minutes when your baby wakes up
Sometimes your baby will stop crying by themselves when they wake up at night. It’s ok to wait a minute or two to see if they stop, but if they cry for any longer than that, they may need to be fed or changed.
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