The baby is finally down for the night and you are ready for some shut-eye! New mothers are often not caught up on sleep, and lack of sleep can cause an off mood, irritability and lethargy. While working hard to keep baby happy and healthy is more important, be sure to take care of yourself, too! Check out these 5 sleep tips for new moms:

Coordinate nap time: Lie down and rest while the baby is down for a nap. Even if you cannot fall asleep, taking a few minutes to lie down and relax may help you feel more rejuvenated.

Plan ahead for night time feedings: If you are breastfeeding, be sure to have pumped enough milk for a mid-night feeding. Enlist help from your husband or family member for nighttime feedings so you can catch up on much needed sleep!

Keep baby close: If you are able to, keep your baby close. Co-sleeping is not recommended as it may cause harm to the baby. Instead, purchase a bassinet that attaches to your bed so you can just reach over and comfort the crying. This way you won’t have to wake up and get out of bed for feedings and can slip right back into sleep.

Follow good sleep hygiene: While trying to wind down after your long day, avoid stimulating activities such as the television or the computer. These activities may disrupt your sleep cycle and cause a night of tossing and turning. Instead, try reading a favorite book, or draw a relaxing bath.

Cut out the caffeine: All new moms are tired, but avoiding caffeine during the day can help you slip into the rejuvenating deep sleep at night. While it is okay to have a cup of coffee in the morning, you should avoid any caffeinated drinks during the afternoon and nighttime.

Talk to your doctor: If you cannot seem to catch a minute of shut-eye on your own, speak with your health care provider. They may be able to direct you to some over-the-counter sleep aids. Be sure to talk with your doctor before purchasing any over-the-counter drugs as it may affect breast feeding.


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