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How Can I Get More Sleep Now That Baby Is Here?

Help! Baby is still waking every few hours and I’m exhausted. What are some ideas to sneak in extra shut-eye?

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Help! Baby is still waking every few hours and I’m exhausted. What are some ideas to sneak in extra shut-eye?

The Bump Expert

You’re reading this at 3 a.m., aren’t you? Eventually, baby will sleep longer stretches -- usually around three months -- and may even sleep through the night around six months. “The first couple months, you’re going to be tired. There’s not a whole lot you can do about it,” says Kira Ryan, coauthor of The Dream Sleeper: A Three-Part Plan for Getting Your Baby to Love Sleep. “So be smart about getting sleep.” Try these tactics:

Follow the tried-and-true advice

“Sleep when the baby is sleeping.” You’ve heard it a thousand times, but seriously follow that old-school adage, says Ryan. If you’ve never been a daytime napper in the past, become one.

Feed baby -- and skip everything else

The most important thing right now is that baby gets plenty of feedings. Make that your priority and don’t stress about the dirty dishes in the sink or about waiting on guests (everyone gets it). “I would literally just feed baby and sleep,” says Rae S.

Tag team

The most important thing is that you and your partner pitch in. Come up with a plan for how you’ll do that. Natalie C. recommends creating “shifts” -- chunks of time when one parent is in charge of getting up with baby, and the other can sleep. “I was pumping every four hours but we were both able to get some uninterrupted sleep, which was very helpful for our mental well-being,” she says.

Call in extra help

Who else can pitch in? Call in a family member or friend or even hire someone, like a night nurse, postpartum doula, maid service or food delivery service. Let them tackle the pile of dirty onesies, the vacuuming or other duties while you get some extra zzzs.

Make nighttime feedings simple

Keep baby in a bassinet by your bed so you’re spending less time wandering the halls and more time snoozing. “My baby woke up like clockwork; 11:45ish and 3:00,” says Ashley K. “I planned for it by going to sleep as soon as she did at night and making sure I already had her bottle and formula by the bed ready to go.”

Create some space

Babies can be pretty loud sleepers -- grunting, moving and cooing. If you’re ready to separate a bit from baby at night, start by putting a partition -- a shoji screen or a curtain maybe -- between the bassinet and your bed, says Ryan.

When you’re ready to move baby into her own room, turn the monitor down to the lowest setting. “A big mistake parents make is putting monitor right next to your head and jacking it all the way -- every little noise will wake you,” says Ryan. “Even if you turn it way down you will hear your baby cry.”

Elena Donovan Mauer

Q&A: How can I get more sleep now that baby is here?

I was also wondering why my baby still wakes up 3 times a night?????He is almost 9 months old.Can someone tell me please???????????????????

valerie572 |

Q&A: How can I get more sleep now that baby is here?

Learn to nurse while sleeping. Babies need more help initially but this can be a big help once you both get the hang of it. Turn on your back and lying the baby cross wise over your tummy with legs hanging to the middle of the bed, can be a good burp position for a slow burper. Nap when baby naps. Bag the house work. Get a few meals you can fix in 15 minutes. My favorite is meat loaf, baked potato and baked squash. Day two baked salmon, baked sweet potato. Make sure you are eating a good breakfast and lunch with plenty of protein. Some tiredness may be blood sugar issues.

inaoconnor |

Q&A: How can I get more sleep now that baby is here?

be careful with the bottle feeding at night if you are breastfeeding. You should still pump if you are going to let dad feed baby. But letting him get the baby up, change, feed and put baby back down can still help emensely! I wish my husband would wake up to do that!

mommaschiefer |

Q&A: How can I get more sleep now that baby is here?

I am looking for advice. I am always tired and I know it's from lack of sleep. I struggle to sleep due to baby is a loud sleeper. I am a first time mom and trying to make it on 4-5 hours of sleep? Any advice??

Peggy1011 |

Q&A: How can I get more sleep now that baby is here?

What I do is when my baby is sleeping.. I sleep too so that i don't get sleepy or tired when she/he is awake

lubshooxtine |

tips-on-how-to-get-more-sleep

What do i do if my baby wont sleep on a flat surface, but only in an arm??? I am trying a rockabye but it's hit and miss. :s Help!!!

kara.nate |

Q&A: How can I get more sleep now that baby is here?

We had the same problem the first week and a half that baby would only sleep in our arms not in his crib or cradle. Eventually I did some online research and found ock a nod play sleepers like a crib but for newborns they are smaller and worked amazingly! Hope this helps

expectingMom2013 |

Q&A: How can I get more sleep now that baby is here?

We're very lucky that I don't supply enough milk without supplementing so night feedings are easier. I take the 2AM and hubby takes the 5AM. He's been sleeping later and later for his 2AM feeding (last night he didn't get up until 3!) but still gets up at 5 then goes back to sleep till 7 or so. What really helps is a bedtime, if not a full day, routine. I know my LO and I really benefit from it! Hardest thing's is to keep with it when it's a new habit. You may get frustrated but keep with it!

Rubychic713 |