Tips For Tired Parents

• Be kind to yourself. Remember that sleep deprivation is a form of torture so what you are going through is a very real challenge. Don’t take on too much. Avoid commitments that will compromise your rest time.

• Arrange a sleep-in deal with your partner, one weekend morning each.

• Accept help whenever it is offered. Have a sleep while your mother-in-law walks baby around the block a few times in the pushchair. There is no shame in having a nap - a wise mama rests!

• Sleep when baby sleeps. If you have an older child who no longer naps, put on a DVD for 30 minutes and cuddle on the couch with them. They won’t mind if you shut your eyes for a while.

• Go to bed early. Don’t worry about the pile of washing, and really you aren’t missing anything on TV. Make sleep your priority. Some theories suggest an hour of sleep before midnight is worth two after midnight. In line with this, perhaps offering a dream feed is not ideal for a sleep deprived mama who may be better to go to bed at 8pm and sleep until her newborn wakes again.

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