Sleep | Managing Sleep Deprivation


Episode 8 | Managing Sleep Deprivation



This episode is brought to you today by my free Clean Sleeping Guide that I have on my website. You can access this baby at Now guys, this guide is the first step I take parents through when I'm looking to help them improve their baby or toddlers sleep. You are literally getting free access to the first pillar of my Triple C Approach that I use to improve baby and toddler sleep. So head on over and download yourself a copy today, Okay, let's get into today's episode.

Okay, so we are going to be exploring ways to help yourself find some rest and sleep when you're feeling sleep deprived.

So my first tip, divide the nights. Now the idea around this is that if you have a partner, if you have a mother, if you have a friend, someone who you can call upon to divide the nights in half. So let's say your baby or toddler goes to bed around seven, perhaps someone can cover the seven till midnight shift while someone's getting some sleep. So if this is you and your partner, one of you can go to bed nice and early so that you can get some sleep in before the, in inverted commas, "The shift change". So perhaps it's that mum or dad at the start of the night covers all wakings between bedtime and around midnight and then after the shift change the other person, is doing, from say midnight until the morning. This can be a really good way, when things are really tough and you're struggling, to ensure that at least both of you are getting some level of sleep because you need sleep to function.

Tip number two, get your partner to offer a dream feed. What this feed allows is for you as a mum to go to bed a little bit earlier instead of staying awake until 10, 10.30, 11, whenever that dream feed is offered and it means that you can get some precious z's before the night begins. Now this is both possible for the breastfed and the formula fed baby. What it looks like for the breastfed baby is that mum would pump before she goes to bed. It would mean that you'd have to have a little stockpile of breast milk already in the fridge so that then you would pump before you go to bed, and then ideally you'd have a nice big gap before you have to feed again, hopefully after midnight sometime your baby feeds, and will take that feed upon the next waking. And you might find the boobs are a little bit full, so you may also need to pump after that feed, and that's also good for supply. But just being able to catch those early z's is excellent for the level of sleep restoration you get during that time, and it means you're not having to stay up until 10.30, 11, sometimes beyond to get that feed into your baby. So that's a great way of catching the much needed holy grail sleep that happens before midnight.

Number three, rest when your baby or toddler does. Now I see so many memes out there that are funny, I like, I laugh as well, you know, it says "sleep when the baby sleeps", "do laundry when the baby does laundry", you know "cook when the baby cooks", and I'm pretty sure I've shared it on my Instagram before because you know that's actually hilarious. Also, I want to see a baby cook, but that will come I'm sure. But I also saw another meme recently on my Instagram and it said "there's always going to be something to do, make sure you value rest". And that rang so true to me, especially when you are sleep deprived, whether you've got a young baby or whether your baby or toddler just isn't sleeping well and you have lots of broken sleep, you really do have to stop. You know what, that to do list is never ending. The minute you are up to date with your washing, the clothes that your baby or toddler and yourself are wearing are going to need to be washed again. Sometimes you have to prioritise sleep and especially when you're going through a phase where your baby isn't sleeping as well and you're having lots of broken sleep, for your own physical and emotional health and for the health of your whole family, just stop when you can and take a breather. Well you know what? Better yet, get someone to come down while you have a rest, look after the baby and tell them to cook you a meal of fold some washing. Ask them. People aren't always good at offering. Just ask them. This is something that I'm going to talk about more by the way, because this has taken me a long time to learn myself and definitely deserves its own episode. All right, point number four, go to bed early. So I've referred to this earlier in the points, but I'm not sure if you knew, but the sleep that happens before midnight is worth double than the sleep after. The reason for that is that we fall into the deepest level of sleep at this point, so that's called non-REM levels three and four, and this is where the restoration happens people. I'm talking, we have cell turnover and cell rejuvenation and we literally are resting and restoring from everything that happened during the day. So catching those hours before midnight is absolute heaven and you know what? Even if you're listening to this, and aren't sleep deprived, try and go to bed even just 15 minutes earlier tonight and your body will love you for it. Again, need to take my own advice here haha.

And lastly, stay off your phone overnight. Now I know this is tricky when you've got a new baby and the feeds along and it can get a little bit boring I guess if your sitting there and just thinking, oh the temptations there to just flick through the gram and check on what everyone is doing. Do you know the impact that it has on your sleep quality when you're flicking through a phone with that blue light blaring in your eyes? It can be disastrous for sleep. It can actually prevent you getting into the deeper levels of sleep, once you do fall back asleep, it delays you being able to fall back asleep, and then it's like quality there after, tends to be less. The other thing about staying off your phone is that if you're able to keep yourself in a rested, almost meditative state, so I'm sure you've heard the term mindfulness, but practicing a level of mindfulness and trying to be in the moment can be just as effective as being asleep. The rest in being in that meditative state actually allows for you to get some rest that's equal to that of sleep, so trying to stay off your phone and trying to practice mindfulness at the same time is such a fabulous combo.

Anyway, I hope that has helped you today. Make sure to share this podcast episode with anyone who you think might need to hear about ways to manage sleep deprivation because you know what? We all need this advice from time to time. All right guys, I will catch you back here next week with another brand new episode.

Thank you so much joining me in today's episode, guys. I hope that you enjoyed it. If you did, please head on over to your podcasts streaming app, whether that's Apple or Spotify, and leave me a review. I want this podcast to get to as many ears as possible so that other mums, who might be having the same questions as you can, find a little bit of information to help their parenting journey along. And you know what? While you're over there leaving a review, please feel free to subscribe so you don't miss a single one of my episodes and don't forget to hit me up on my socials, Facebook and Instagram @jenbutlerearlyparenting. Can't wait to bring you your next episode. I'll see you back here again then.


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