Can Parents with Babies Hope to Sleep?

Can Parents with Babies Hope to Sleep?
Can Parents with Babies Hope to Sleep?

May is Better Sleep Month – a time to focus attention on the importance of how sleep contributes to overall physical, emotional and overall well being.

A new survey from Owlet Baby Care, makers of the Owlet Smart Sock, uncovers information about the shut-eye habits and routines of parents of newborn children, a group who consistently gets less sleep than the general population.

According to the survey only five percent of parents of babies zero to six months old are getting the recommended eight hours of sleep a night.

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Forty-three percent report only getting an average of one to three hours of uninterrupted sleep per night, in fact, 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.

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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.

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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 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.

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.

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.

Owlet Baby Care commissioned a study of parents of newborns to find out about their sleep habits, what keeps them up at night, and what helps them (and baby) get the best sleep.

This study was conducted by CARAVAN ORC International among a sample of 500 parents of children under age 2. The field period was April 6-10, 2016. The findings were announced Monday, May 2.

RMN News

Rakesh Raman