It’s no secret that parents – especially mothers – struggle with sleep deprivation, especially when their children are very young. As a first-time mother of a 6-month-old baby who is still breastfeeding, I, too, struggle to get a good night’s sleep. While my baby is generally a good sleeper and is able to sleep six to seven hours at a stretch, he does go through occasional bouts of sleep regression where he wakes up every other hour, crying and needing attention. Even on “normal” nights, he wakes up at least once to nurse and in need of a diaper change, which interrupts my sleep.
While most parents of young children have resigned themselves to getting less sleep, it’s actually crucial to one’s health to squeeze in as much shuteye as possible. Long-term sleep deprivation can lead to increased stress levels, irritability and anxiety as well as chronic health issues such as heart disease, kidney disease, high blood pressure and stroke.
As we celebrate World Sleep Day on 17 March, we speak to five millennial mothers and how they ensure they get the rest they need (and deserve!)