Let’s talk about sleep!
Almost every parent has sleep deprivation in those early weeks and months with a newborn.
Sometimes it continues further than that.
Let’s chat about what happens with the baby when a baby’s born and how lack of sleep can affect you, and 3 tips to help with better sleep. (Scroll to the video if you prefer)
When you’re sleep deprived a few things that can be quite affected are:
hormones, they will fluctuate irregularly
breast milk supply can reduce
become quite forgetful – that can also be related to baby brain as well
poor decision making
patience and tolerance level, easily triggered
Your immune system is lowered
That actually happened to me quite a bit when I wasn’t getting a lot of sleep. I’d end up with a head cold every four to five weeks. That’s an indication that you know your immune system is not coping.
You might find yourself snapping and getting really irritable quite easily when you have not had enough sleep.
Why do babies have such an erratic sleeping pattern?
It seems like you’ve just put them down and then half an hour later they’re waking up.
When a baby is sleeping, they have growth spurts. The growth hormones for them really kick in to help them grow and process new information.
Their tummy is really small like, from a marble at birth to a walnut / chicken egg size by 6 weeks old. They can’t hold a lot of milk in their tummy. This is why they wake up regularly, so they are able to have a feed to nourish them and give them the nutrients and energy they need to grow some more.
Also sleep cycles are different to a baby than an adult. An adults sleep cycle is 90 minutes, whereas for a newborn it’s around 60 minutes. They’ll only be asleep for a little while it seems, and wake up again. For an adult, well, you know how it goes… we just start to relax and fall into that sleepy state and then baby wakes up.
It’s probably so the parent doesn’t fall into such a deep sleep they don’t hear the baby. Mums rarely have deep sleep – dads on the other hand…… (laugh).
Remember to never compare your baby to someone else’s, or label them as a ‘good’ baby or a “bad” baby if they wake regularly.
When you’re overtired, these 3 things can help.
Have you found yourself so tired, when you actually get to lay down you’re just wired find it hard to relax? Isn’t that a frustrating momen!
Here’s a few things you can do.
Take magnesium. Chloride Flakes or Epsom Salts (Mag Sulphate) in the bath, and you can pop some essential oils in there. Lavender and marjoram oils are really great for relaxing and sleep. Make sure they’re pure essential oils, (If you don’t know much about essential oils, contact me for details).
Drinking chamomile tea in the afternoon/early evening. That will also come into the breast milk and it will help sooth your baby. Chamomile tea is beneficial to help you relax and get you ready for a better sleep
Make a massage oil, using a carrier oil, like coconut oil or jojoba oil, sweet almond oil, raw sesame oil etc. Add Lavender, Marjoram and Vetiver essential oils. *make sure it’s not too strong when the baby is near you because they will be quite sensitive to those essential oils. A little goes a long way
Get naps in as much as you can through the day
These oils are great for helping you to sleep and to be grounded. And you can rub that anywhere. If you’re putting near your chest, avoid the nipples. Have someone rub your neck and shoulders with it or wherever you feel.
Practice one or two of these things that you can bring in to help enhance your sleep.