Nothing beats a good night’s (or nap’s) sleep. But once you become a parent, it’s not just up to you anymore. Babies come with their own time zones and ever-changing internal clocks. Parenthood can feel like permanent jet lag.
On top of that, every extra hour of sleep you choose to get means losing out on precious me-time, an uninterrupted conversation with your partner, or a chance to catch up on work. So sleep starts to feel like something you can leave for later. But is it?
Healthy sleep habits are as important for you as a parent as they are for your child(ren)’s wellbeing – and for your family’s Zen! You’re 20 times more likely to experience anxiety and four times more prone to depression if you’re sleep deprived. Studies have also found that couples fight more if one or both persons are not sleeping well.
So, before normalising sleep deprivation as an inevitable part of parenthood, let’s be mindful of its impact and raise a flag when we know that something needs to change. The tricky part is to decide as a parent: how much can I, and should I, try to control and mould my child’s sleep patterns?
As midwives and perinatal coaches, our recommendation is always: within the realm of what’s healthy and developmentally possible for your child(ren), find ways to mould their sleep patterns so that you can satisfy your own sleep needs, too.
We feel so strongly about this, that we’re working on a new online course on what we like to call “sleep shaping” your baby, together with our friend and sleep expert Gemma Fisk. We can’t wait to share more about it with you very soon!
Get prepared for all the curveballs that life with a new baby can throw at you with our digital prenatal course, Hatch™. Because when it comes to birth prep, the postnatal period shouldn’t be an afterthought.
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