We all know how important sleep hygiene is. It is fundamental for maintaining mental and physical health, proven to relieve stress, improve memory and boost your mood. If you struggle to nod off, you might be looking for ways to fall asleep quickly or giving sleep meditation a try.
And if you’ve recently become a parent, you’ll know just how much a lack of sleep affects your day to day.
While the lack of shut eye is hardly news to parents, the fact that they’re missing out on around six weeks of sleep in the first year of parenthood is, ironically, eye opening.
A study has found that new parents lose up to 44 days of sleep until their baby is one year old, which equates to an average of just over 5 hours of snoozing per night.
The survey by Ergoflex asked sleep-related questions to a group of 1,812 participants over the age of 18 in the UK.
It found that over the course of just one year, new parents will experience sleep deprivation quickly. It can lead to irritability and lack of productivity, as well as cause long term health issues.
To tackle this, they suggest sleeping while the baby sleeps – which can be up to 18 hours a day for newborns – with power naps in two-hour windows between feeds.
Perinatal mental health is also very important, with 1 in 5 new UK mothers experiences pre or postnatal mental health problems.
On Mother’s Day this year, Red Letter Days joined up with maternal mental health charity PANDAS and Mush, a mums social network, to create red postboxes encouraging mums to send letters of support to new and expecting parents.