Sleep is a very sought after currency in our household with a newborn. Whenever you can sneak a nap in, you attempt to do it. Sometimes the baby wakes up, sometimes she doesn’t. It’s very difficult to manage especially when you have things you need to get done around the house on top of taking care of the little one. I’ve put together a list of tips I’m currently following in order to ensure you don’t lose out on sleep.
Sleep when the baby sleeps
I’ve been told this dozens of times and really it does help. Considering newborns sleep on average about 16 hours a day, there’s bound to be at least 8 hours in there for you. Granted they won’t be consecutive, but as moms and dads, we gotta take what we can get.
Prepare for the night shift
If you know you’re going to be feeding throughout the night, try to get a nap before actual bed time. I’m currently on maternity leave so it works out quite nicely as I can hand her off to my husband for a bit while I try to get some sleep in. Granted not everyone has a partner/enough maternity leave to do this, but even if you have a friend or a family member who can come over just for a couple hours at night when your little one has a particularly bad cluster feed the night before… it’s definitely worth it.
Accept all help
You see this tip everywhere and I’m further emphasizing it. If someone’s willing to come over even just to keep your baby quiet for an hour, accept it. It’s lovely. So now that you have that time, use it wisely. Unless you have something really pressing, this is the time that you should take a nap.
Try not to give into caffeine
This one has been a bit difficult for me. Granted I’m still drinking decaf, but really during this time, caffeine is not you’re friend. If anything it’ll just make your crash even harder as you spent the time you should’ve been sleeping awake and are now dipping even further into your sleep bank. Also if you’re breastfeeding, a lot of caffeine will make your baby even fussier, so really it’s a lose lose situation should you choose to drink it.
Try to do as much of your shopping online
This might seem a bit backwards as it doesn’t directly relate to sleeping, but if you’re able to do online grocery shopping, it means you don’t have to leave the house as much which means more opportunities to sleep. If you’re going out with the baby, you have to consider the time it takes to get your baby dressed, get you dressed, putting your baby in their car seat, putting your baby in a shopping cart, and then actually shopping. Whereas shopping online, you get yourself a ton of extra time where you don’t have to travel and the best part is that you don’t have to get dressed or anything. Then depending on the online service, you can edit your cart up to a certain point so if you get a bit tied down, you can go back and edit your order at a later point. I definitely suggest making the switch if you’re able to.
So these are what I’m working with at the moment. I hope this helps some of you who might be struggling with finding sleep.