Your tips for managing sleep deprivation(11 Posts)
I don’t think I’ve slept for longer than an hour and a half at a time for over a week now. I tried to make a coffee the other way with a jar of gravy granules, I nearly went out in odd shoes yesterday and last night I managed to string out an extremely emotional, crying argument with DH for the entire length of The Apprentice all because he said he thought the new bedding is bought looked ‘studenty’
How do you stay sane during this period? Any tips for how to cope with the headaches and the crazy?
poor you. How old is your DC? Ideally, go to bed early (7pm after dinner), your DH is on duty till midnight so you've had a 5 hour stretch at least. This is presuming you're at home with DC and DH works full time? Once a week (Friday or Saturday night) he should be on night duty and let you have a lie in. Go in a different room if you can. Yeah it's not great for your relationship but it's (hopefully) temporary and sleep is so important, we don't realise how much until it's gone and lastly, be kind to yourself. Drink tea, eat cake and let the house go, it REALLY doesn't matter
I have had six years of sleep deprivation (at my worst I was getting up 20 times a night - I'm not exagerating, I noted it on a piece of paper to make sure my brain wasn't playing tricks on me!).
Things that helped:
Co-sleeping - me with little one, DH with bigger one. We still got woken multiple times a night but not having to physically get out of bed was loads better
Going to bed early every single night. I go to bed between 9 and 9.30 regardless of how good the previous night was. Because if ever I stay up any later you can guarantee that'll be the night all hell breaks lose.
Take advantage of every nap going. If you just have the one baby, send DH out of the house with the baby. DH used to put DS2 in the sling and go for walks rond the road whilst reading his kindle. He got a lot of funny looks but it helped me.
Don't drink alcohol. Drink lots of water.
Try to avoid being dependant on sugar to boost you (I failed this for a couple of years and am now struggling to lose the weight)
Take any offers of babysitting and use them to sleep. My parents offer us a monthly babysitting, with the idea that we could go out for a meal. For months on end we'd use it to sleep instead.
Remember that this too shall pass. I say I've had 6 years of sleep deprivation but it's been up and down in terms of difficulty. I've had many many horrendous nights. But also some reasonable ones (only getting up twice!)
You don't say how old your DC is or if you're on mat leave so not sure if you get much opportunity to nap but my advice is:
Nap during the day whenever you get the chance. If DC is asleep or being looked after by someone else, jump straight into bed, throw the covers over your head and close your eyes. Even if you end up not actually sleeping, just laying with closed eyes can be pretty restorative.
Sleep any time you have the opportunity to
Value closing your eyes and resting even if you can't sleep
Slow down. Value your rest. Don't rush.
Get rid of your bedside clock. Pay no attention to the times of wake ups
Consciously don't count night wakes.
Have baby within reach, sidecar cot for example.
I find going to bed ridiculously early made a huge difference in the early weeks. More then a couple of nights in a row after 9.30 and I'd be wrecked and teary.
Don't think about how many times you woke or how many hours you slept.
Relax and do nothing as often as you can if you can't nap.
How old is the baby?
WTF were you doing watching the apprentice instead of sleeping?
Why did you waste good sleeping time buying a new bedding set that may or may not be studenty?
Why are you on MN instead of sleeping?
Take it where you can get it. Nap at every opportunity. I used to put on headphones with quiet music which always had me nodding off immediately.
Naps of less than 30 minutes or more than 90 minutes are the best. Avoid anything in between. Don't read up on why. That's flushing away your nap window.
Don't read up on why. That's flushing away your nap window.
Ah, the voice of experience.
Made me smile. Always. Prioritise. Sleeping.
Take a nap whenever you get the chance
Have a plan for when you are up (TV programme, internet, flask of coffee)
Get some fresh air during the day
Learn how to make really good coffee....and teach everyone around you, so they can make you one while you gave a disco snooze.
<disclaimer...in the last week I have been to work with my trousers on backwards, accidentally worn my slippers to a meal with friends and broken 2 cups from overtired clumsiness>
RunRabbit- this made me laugh a lot!
DS is six weeks, breast feeding and not able to express just yet as trying to calm over supply so can’t get any help with night shifts at the moment. I know six weeks of no sleep is nothing in comparison to what’s to come but oh my gosh nothing can quite prepare you, can it? I definitely need to care less about the house and what state it gets in, and try to sleep when the baby sleeps (and heed my own advice- has had had a two hour nap and I used to watch a bit of tele and now he is stirring ready for his pre midnight snack...)
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