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How to Get Some Sleep When You Have a Newborn

Is sleep deprivation threatening your sanity? Before you fall apart, try a few tricks that have worked for other new moms.


  • Step 1: Consider breast-feeding If you’re able to, consider breast-feeding. Breast milk contains a protein that helps babies sleep better, which means you’ll get more shut-eye.
  • TIP: If possible, keep an extra bottle of breast milk on hand so someone else can do the next feeding.
  • Step 2: Try putting the crib in your room Try putting your newborn’s crib in your bedroom, or attaching a bassinet to the side of your bed. Many moms find this more restful than trekking to the nursery several times a night.
  • : Talk to your doctor before bringing your baby into bed with you. There are risks associated with this practice.
  • Step 3: Feed your baby before you sleep Before you turn in for the night, give your baby another feeding – even if it means waking her up. This will reduce the chances that you'll hear a hungry wail just as you’re entering dreamland.
  • Step 4: Cover the bedroom clocks Cover the bedroom clocks so you can't see what time it is. If you spend all night calculating how little sleep you’re getting, you’ll never doze off.
  • Step 5: Don’t discount power naps Take every opportunity to sleep, even if it’s brief – they don’t call it a 'power nap' for nothing.
  • TIP: One study found that a nap of just six minutes will not only refresh you, but also improve your memory.
  • Step 6: Cry uncle Admit that you need help. Even a visit from your meddling mother-in-law can be pleasant if it means a stretch of uninterrupted sleep.
  • FACT: Babies usually sleep for four to five hours at a stretch by two months of age.

You Will Need

  • Breast milk
  • A willingness to share your bedroom
  • Power naps
  • Help

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