When you become a mom, things become hectic. No matter how prepared you are for what’s coming, you’ll soon realize that you simply cannot prepare for everything. Having and taking care of a newborn baby is a lot of work that does bring a lot of joy, but can bring a lot of stress as well. Most moms get so preoccupied with their newborn that they hardly leave any time for themselves.
What suffers the most in these situations is their sleep. Of course, your baby is important, but this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t take care of yourself. Moms are very protective of their kids and want to do whatever they can to help them, but at the same time, you need to be realistic and not make it worse for yourself.
Here is why you need to grab as much sleep as you possibly can to avoid any health issues.
Moms need to sleep just as much as dads
Remember what you and your husband talked about before you had the baby? The deal was to share all of the work that comes along with a newborn and that you are going to work as a team. When the moment came, you soon realize that you have taken over more than your spouse and that you are sleeping less than him.
It doesn’t matter if it’s his or your fault, you need to fix this as soon as possible. A lot of parents keep a scoreboard for their sleep so that they can both get enough of it and avoid being sleep deprived. Regardless of how it sounds, it’s actually a good thing, as this is how you will both get the necessary rest.
You don’t need to sleep in sync with your spouse
Keeping a sleep scoreboard means that you should get equal sleep on a regular basis, but it doesn’t mean that you should sleep at the same time, especially if your spouse is working while you are at home. Don’t cling on to the idea that you will be able to sleep at the same time during every day.
You need to work as a team and organize yourselves every day because having a small child is unpredictable and you will have to “go with the flow.” Sometimes you will sleep for 5 hours for the whole day, and other times your spouse can take over so that you can get enough sleep. Be a real team and work to help each other as much as possible.
Less sleep does not mean more time
A lot of fresh moms think that they will be able to do more if they sleep less. Even though this is true for a short period of time, very quickly, you will start to feel the toll of sleep depravity. When you are sleep deprived, you won’t be able to focus on what you are doing and you will easily lose your chain of thought. This means that you will do much less in the time you have.
In the end, your body and mind will suffer but, ultimately, you won’t be able to get more things done. It’s better to catch a break and get even an hour of sleep if possible rather than pushing yourself to the limits and not being able to handle simple tasks.
Improper sleep leads to health problems
Sure, maybe you will be able to keep up for some time without sleep, but it won’t do you any good. A lot of sleep-deprived moms are sort of proud of their achievements and like to talk about the fact that they don’t get any sleep. Sleepless nights and sharing your “achievements” with other moms is nothing to be proud of.
Not getting enough sleep could lead to chronic exhaustion or chronic stress and this is something that many people don’t take seriously, but they should. On top of that, you will be at risk of making mistakes you normally wouldn’t such as forgetting to strap your baby in the car, you might cut yourself when cooking, or you might trip and fall down.
Sure, when you can’t, you can’t – but when you find the time – you must
Of course, we are not trying to undermine your effort and all of the obligations that come with motherhood. You DO have to put in some extra effort and you WILL sleep less. Forget about sleeping 8 hours every day or being able to sleep more than 4 hours at a time.
However, rather than thinking that you will be able to get a lot of things done and that you will “create” free time to sleep, you will have to find those windows during the day and night to catch a bit of sleep whenever you can. First of all, babies sleep a lot, but in shorter intervals, and you should try and sync your sleep with your baby’s.
At the same time, whenever your spouse can cover for you, make the time to catch some sleep and get the necessary rest.
There is no excuse! You need to sleep, especially as a mom. You need to be fresh enough to take care of your baby properly and enjoy motherhood. Don’t put too much stress on yourself and cause a greater issue because your child will need you for a long time.