Sleepless nights and eye bags are more or less what grace motherhood for new moms. Don’t be shocked to find out that the insta perfect moms are hiding their tiredness behind makeup because this is what actually happens in the background.
There are so many jokes about chronic sleep deprivation for new moms on the internet but the effects of lack of adequate sleep are anything but a laughing matter.
No sleep is linked to increased stress and irritability, problems with concentration, weight gain and other health issues. If not careful, you will not be able to be there for your newborn unless you deliberately take some action to ensure you get enough rest. Here is how.
i. Wind down early
Your internal clock might be used to you sleeping late but you have to adjust. Try to get things done as early as possible so that you can have more time to sleep at night. Avoid screen time immediately before bed and dim the lights early. You should also get white noise machines for your baby so they can relax and fall asleep faster.
ii. Practice relaxation techniques
It’s possible to have those days where you’re too tired to sleep. You might also be experiencing insomnia from stress, which is a never-ending cycle because the next day you’ll feel more stressed and have a hard time sleeping again. You should find ways to help you relax like meditation to control racing thoughts and aromatherapy. You can also spend time venting out your feelings to a loved one to ease your mind.
iii. Take daytime naps with your baby
Don’t be tempted to clean, organize and get chores done when the baby is asleep. Use that time to sleep too. Day time naps will compensate for at least an hour or two if you’re not able to sleep at the right time at night. Just focus on getting some rest whenever you can so that you’re less exhausted.
iv. Limit the number of guests you’re inviting
I’m sure so many friends and family want to come see you and the baby. It’ll be hard for you to balance everything while you’re a new mom and the last thing you need is to host people all the time. Thank God we have video calls that can be used as an alternative to actual meetups. Only invite close friends and relatives who can be willing to help you as you nap and postpone other visits.
v. Split the duties
Your partner might not like it but they’ll have to handle some mommy duties too. Store expressed milk for future use so your partner can handle feeding time at night. They should also learn how to change diapers to allow you some peaceful nights without interruption.
vi. Let other forms of self-care take a back seat
For now, adequate sleep should be the ultimate form of self-care for any new mom. I’m not saying you should let yourself go and look messy but you should try and reduce the pressure you’re putting on yourself to look perfect. The best solution is to find hacks like leave-in treatments for your hair which save time, simple go to hairstyles you can try, dry shampoo and quick pedicure procedures you can do at home. You could even stock up on colorless polish which still looks pretty and less obvious when it starts to chip unlike colored polish. Anything that saves time will go a long way in ensuring you get enough rest at night.
ALSO READ: 10 manners your kids should learn
vii. Accept that you need extra help around the house
The best gift you can give yourself is getting someone to handle most of the chores. It’s not easy to accept help if you’re used to doing things on your own and perfecting the standards depending on how you like things to be at home. But, it’s okay to relax for a while and focus on your baby and your wellbeing.