Tips for a good night sleep for parents
A good night’s sleep is one of the simplest ways to invest in your long term health and wellness but many parents to be or new parents don’t get anywhere near enough sleep.
How much sleep is enough?
The number of hours an individual needs each night varies – it’s commonly known that mums to be need extra sleep, after all, they are growing a new human being! On average, adults should be getting about eight hours of good sleep. It’s interesting to note that once upon a time, sleep deprivation was used by the Chinese as form of torture because of its debilitating effects… here’s some tips to ensure that you’re getting quality sleep, even if it is a little less than you should be having.
1. Create a relaxation routine
Routine is essential for a new families and to ensure all get a good night’s sleep. It’s a good idea to develop a pre-sleep routine so your body will come to expect this and relax before climbing into bed. This could include a warm shower or reading a book.
When we wake up in the morning our bodies feel tight and in need of a stretch but taking the time to stretch before bed can be beneficial too. This is because the repetitive activities which you would be undertaking during the day can lead to tight and fatigued muscles – stretching these out before bed will ensure that you’re comfortable when you get into bed and less likely to be sore when you wake in the morning.
3. Have the right tools
You will spend about a third of your life sleeping. This makes your mattress one of the most important pieces of furniture in your home. You do not want to disadvantage your body with poor postural support for such a long period of time as this will hinder your body’s natural resting and healing process. Make sure you ask yourself… do you feel like your lower back is getting enough support? Are there any pressure points that are uncomfortable? If you’re lying with your partner can you feel him/her move around?
4. Support for your head
Did you realise that your head weighs almost five kilograms? Because of this, your good night’s sleep package will not be complete without a proper pillow that will provide you with lasting support. When buying a new pillow, look for one that sits in the crevice between your head and shoulder that leaves your head in a neutral position.
Hopefully these tips will mean that the sleep you are getting is quality sleep. And don’t forget that your Back In Motion physio can provide advice on the appropriate mattress and pillow for your body’s needs.
You can read more about sleep in Get Yourself Back In Motion, written by Back In Motion Health Group Founder and Physiotherapist, Jason Smith.