Moms give their all to the ones they love—juggling hectic schedules and managing the demands of bustling households. But while you are taking care of everyone else, don’t forget to take care of one of your most important needs—a good night’s sleep.
“Sleep is essential for the emotional, psychological and physical resiliency mothers need to care for their families,” says Jyotir Jani, M.D., a family medicine doctor with Piedmont Physicians Johns Creek. “Not to mention, adequate sleep prevents serious diseases such as heart disease, diabetes and depression.”
Sleep can be hard to come by for many moms, but with a few tweaks, you can catch a few more disease-fighting, mood-boosting, much-needed ZZZs.
Here are six tips from Dr. Jani to help you get a better night’s sleep:
- Go to bed earlier when you can. Instead of getting the seven to nine hours of sleep recommended for most adults, mothers often try to get work or chores done at night while their children are sleeping. Remember, the more rest you get, the more productive you will be in the long run.
- Practice good sleep hygiene. So often we focus on the quantity of sleep, which is important, but equally important is the quality of your sleep. As a mom, you can improve the quality of your sleep by focusing on the small details of sleep hygiene: a proper pillow, comfortable mattress, darkened room and cool room temperature (ideally between 60 and 67 degrees).
- Develop a calming nightly routine. Studies have shown that a nightly routine can help you sleep easier. Once your child is down for the night, try taking a warm bath or hot shower, or meditating 15 to 30 minutes before bed. This will help you calm down and unwind, preparing your body and mind for restful slumber.
- Experiment with napping. Napping does not always help “repay” the sleep debt you’ve accumulated over time. That said, it does have some benefits: relaxation, reduced fatigue, increased alertness, better mood and improved performance in daily tasks.
- But don’t be discouraged if napping doesn’t work for you. Some people feel groggy or disoriented after a nap. Try napping and see how it affects your sense of well-being.
- Ask for help. It isn’t selfish to ask your partner to help you care for your children in the evenings or to take turns getting up with the baby in the middle of the night. When you are rested, you can be a better mom, partner and friend.
Remember, when you take the time to rest, you are filling up your energy reserves so you can take care of your children and others. While you may not be able to get a full night’s sleep each night, you can improve the quality of your sleep so you feel better, have more energy and prevent serious disease.
Piedmont has more options for getting the care you need, when you need it, from urgent care to 24/7 virtual visits from your smartphone or desktop, to same-day appointments and online scheduling. Visit piedmont.org/now to learn more about how you can get care on your time, in good time.