Having a baby comes with joy and happiness. But as first-time parents are flooded with positive emotions, they also start feeling the stress of caring for a newborn. They might wonder when they will be able to catch some sleep or what parenting type they have.
Not sleeping enough is something common for first-time parents. They need to wake up in the middle of the night for feeding or diaper changes. During the day they try to do some house chores while the baby sleeps as there is always something that needs to be done around the house.
The schedule and agenda of parents will change after the baby comes. Catching a session of good sleep will be scarce. So, how can first-parents survive the first sleepless year? Are there any hacks you should know? Here is a step by step guide for first-time parents that will help them face the new challenges that lie ahead.
1. Change Your Sleeping Schedule
Some babies sleep for the entire night, while others wake up multiple times during the night. Having a good night’s sleep helps parents be calmer and patient during the day. On the other hand, sleep deprivation comes with negative consequences.
So, if your baby wakes up during the night frequently, you need to change your sleeping schedule. However, babies do not sleep for at least 6 hours straight during the night until they reach 3 months, so the first months are tough for all parents.
Even though it may sound like a cliche, sleeping when the baby sleeps is one of the best solutions that will help first-time parents survive the first sleepless year. Newborns sleep about 9 hours during the daytime and about 8 during nighttime.
However, they do not sleep for 9 hours straight but wake up frequently. Sleeping when your baby sleeps can help first-time parents survive the first year. Trying to do household chores will only make you more tired and you will not catch any sleep during the night either. Naps can boost your energy and they can refresh you.
2. A Good Sleeping Environment
To get a good session of sleep, you need to adjust your environment so that you can benefit from sleep. This is important both for parents and babies, as dark rooms and background white noise can keep babies asleep for longer periods.
However, some things might distract first-time parents and remind them of their chores. This is why it is important to have the bedroom clean and decluttered. But first-time parents might experience another natural phenomenon. There might be issues regarding the sharing of the bed between the partners.
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These issues may last until the sleeping pattern of the newborn will get more structured. So, sleeping in different beds does not mean that you are experiencing conflicts or marital problems. It is something normal that happens to all first-time parents and this is a healthy solution.
Sleep is very important, especially in the case of first-time parents that are confronted with challenges and new things to learn about their baby every day, said Alexander L. from Mimy Online.
3. Take Care of the Baby on Shifts
Many parents struggle to handle the challenges posed by having a baby. Getting enough sleep is important because it helps your body repair and gain more energy to face the new day. Sleep also improves your wellbeing and reduces stress. You can concentrate better and this is very important for first-time parents.
One of the solutions that will help you get more sleep is taking care of the baby on shifts. This is essential especially during the first months when the sleeping pattern of the baby is chaotic. This will also allow each of the parents to rest so that they can function properly the next day.
4. Ask for Help
The first months can be pretty hectic, as first-time parents are stressed about the number of things they still do not know. Every day comes with a new learning experience, and this can turn out to be overwhelming. Many first-time parents avoid asking for help because they think that they should do this on their own. Or that they are not good parents if they ask for help.
This is false. Being aware that you need help and asking for it actually makes you a good parent. If you have a baby, it does not mean that you should not relax anymore or get enough sleep. Yes, being a parent comes with sacrifices, but the help you could get can help you be more relaxed and handle everything better. There are expert professionals that can help you and offer the informational support you need. Do not be afraid to ask your parents to support you and take care of the baby. They will surely be enthusiastic about it.
So, the first year can be full of sacrifices and challenges for first-time parents. With some adjustments to the sleeping schedule and environment, you can improve your sleep quality and recharge your batteries.