sleeping babyMay is Better Sleep Month. Sleep is important to  physical, emotional and overall well being. Are you a sleep deprived parent? A new survey from Owlet Baby Care found that:

  •  5 percent of parents of babies zero to six months old are getting the recommended eight hours of sleep a night
  • 43 percent report only getting an average of one to three hours of uninterrupted sleep per night
  • 17 percent of moms report getting a poor night sleep every single night of the week due to their newborn.

According to the Journal of Sleep Medicine, interrupted sleep can be just as detrimental to mood, attention span and cognitive ability as no sleep at all, and several nights of fragmented sleep can have long-term negative consequences.

The State of Sleeplessness
Although a majority of parents share night time responsibilities, moms are getting up far more regularly. In fact, 32 percent of moms report that their spouse or partner never get out of bed to check on baby at night, while only seven percent of dads report that mom never got out of bed.

The age old advice of “sleep when baby sleeps” doesn’t hold true for today’s parents with 41 percent reporting that they are never able to sleep during the daytime hours while their newborn sleeps. To those parents of newborns who are no stranger to sleep deprivation, the survey shows they’d be willing to shell out the big bucks for a solid night’s sleep. Half of the sleep deprived parents said they would pay at least $100 for a full eight hours of uninterrupted sleep, with about one in 10 parents saying they would pay $1,000.

As a result of sleepless nights, parents report falling asleep in some pretty interesting places:

  • Close to one-third (30 percent) of new fathers have fallen asleep at work.
  • One in five (21 percent) of new parents have fallen asleep in a parked car.
  • Twelve percent have fallen asleep at the kitchen table.
  • Eleven percent have fallen asleep in the shower.

How to get the Sleep you Need: Setting a Routine
Parents spend a lot of time trying to get a routine in place to help their little one get to sleep and sleep longer. Ninety-one percent of parents have a bedtime routine for their newborns, and it can take a long time to get through it! Twenty-one percent report that it takes at least 45 minutes to put their baby to bed each night.

Change Behavior: Worries, Concerns and Tasks that Keep Parents Awake
Aside from their newborn keeping them up at night, new parents report a variety of activities and concerns preventing them from getting sleep.

  • Moms are most often kept awake by a practical chore,housework, (37 percent)
  • Dads report a more cerebral worry that most often keeps them up,providing a good life for their child (32 percent).
  • New moms are more likely to report being kept awake by social media (30 percent) than dads (18 percent).
  • Parents are still trying to keep the spark alive! About one in five new parents also report that aside from their newborn waking in the middle of the night, sex keeps them up at night

Geraldine Jensen

Publisher and Editor of Families Online Magazine. Our experts provide warm, loving, and generous advice for you, your family and children, no matter their age -- infants, school age, 'tweens, and teenagers. Features include:Parenting, Ages and Stages of Child Development, Child Support, Cooking, Health, Children's Books, Nutrition, Christian Parenting, Relationships, Green-living, Education and School

Ms. Jensen is a leading advocate for families and children and was the founder and president of ACES, The Association for Children for Enforcement of Support.
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