How to cope with sleep deprivation

Dr Martin Bailey

Babies need you round the clock, and it’s a big adjustment to cope with short bursts of sleep.

Here are some suggestions on how to cope:

  • Cut out caffeine, nicotine and alcohol in the late afternoon and evening.
  • Exercise with particular reference to pelvic floor exercise.
  • Stick to a bedtime routine for both you and your baby.
  • Try to grab a 15-20min snooze during the day as this can improve alertness.
  • Avoid falling asleep in chairs or on the couch. Try to sleep only in your bed.
  • Avoid heavy meals just before bedtime
  • Keep a notepad next to your bed and unload your thoughts onto the pad until morning.

Most importantly, ask for help and be gentle with yourself! This stage will soon pass.