Most parents find great happiness in raising their children. For the first six years after the arrival of your first child, increased expectations and obligations connected with the parent’s position may cause lower sleep quality and quantity.
Having a baby means you won’t get much sleep. We are proud of our ability to function on a minimal amount of sleep. We view sleep as unproductive downtime. You should notice the importance of sleep to our health.
The medical disorder known as sleep apnea causes moms to have trouble breathing while they sleep. Sleep apnea is characterised by several interruptions in breathing during sleep.
Depending on how severe one’s sleep apnea is, these cycles may prevent the body from receiving adequate oxygen, resulting in daytime weariness and other indications of insufficient sleep.
Obstructive sleep apnea results when the upper airway becomes partially or entirely blocked off during sleep. The most frequent form is obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
Sleep Apnea As a Mum
Some women start experiencing sleep apnea right from pregnancy. Your OSA symptoms may go away after giving birth, but this isn’t the case for everyone. It’s not unusual for these women to have had a preexisting case of OSA.
Having children has the effect of further reducing our already meagre sleep time. Babies, especially newborns, need frequent nighttime feedings and reassurance. We attempt to splice it together and “sleep when the baby sleeps,” but it never seems enough.
When you have OSA, your heart rate, breathing, and blood oxygen levels all suffer. OSA is linked to several health problems, including diabetes, asthma, depression, stroke, immune suppression, coronary illness and hypertension
First-time parents can gauge how well they sleep by comparing their sleep in their final month of pregnancy to the first month after giving birth. (around 20 days of life).
Moms missed an average of forty-one minutes of sleep every night, whereas fathers lost only eighteen minutes.
In contrast, mothers had an increase of 30 minutes daily in their daytime napping, while fathers saw no variation.
In this study, fathers get less sleep than mothers during pregnancy and the weeks following delivery. Moms continued to have it worse, with more nighttime waking and fragmented sleep than dads (and mothers probably need additional rest, especially with postpartum recovery and lactation needs).
Regardless of whether they were the primary caregiver, mothers and fathers reported feeling exhausted during the day.
3 Negative Effects of Lack of Sleep for New Mothers
1. Mood Swings
New parents indicate that OSA is linked to increased negative emotions and aggression. Chronically sick moms are seven times more likely to develop mild depression than their well-rested peers.
Babies with sleep issues are likelier to have a mother who suffers from postpartum depression. When parents were advised on how to get their infant to sleep better and the mum started OSA treatment, the mother’s mood also improved.
2. Mental Capability
Lack of enough sleep impairs various mental functions, including alertness and response time, while carrying out crucial tasks. Parents require exceptional working memory since they constantly switch between multiple responsibilities.
The ability to quickly change tasks — from trying to send an official email to handling the urgent needs of your infant who has to go potty RIGHT NOW — requires cognitive flexibility.
This skill is essential for maintaining a healthy marriage and parenting an infant. Finding the correct words to express yourself is a sign of verbal fluency.
Every day, we put these abilities to use by solving problems and controlling our feelings. And what do you know? Sleep deprivation and OSA have adverse effects on all of these mental abilities.
Because of impaired judgment and focus, OSA may impair a mother’s capacity to care for her child. Because infants commonly inherit their mothers’ circadian sleep rhythms, sleep-deprived mothers may unwittingly damage their infants’ sleep quality.
While it’s normal for new parents to have trouble sleeping at some point, persistent insomnia despite weariness is a sign of OSA, postpartum anxiety and mood disorders like depression, anxiety, and obsessive-compulsive disorder.
Even if you’re taking all the recommended steps to combat postpartum depression, such as seeking assistance, sleeping when the baby does, and making sleep a top priority, you may still be experiencing deeper issues.
Is There Anything You Can Do to Fix Your Sleeping Apnea?
Your doctor will suggest some self-care measures in addition to any medical interventions. Before recommending a CPAP machine from a supplier like cpap direct, they may recommend one of these alternatives instead. Home remedies for obstructive sleep apnea can include things like:
- Attempt a new sleeping posture (attempting to sleep on your left side).
- Alterations to one’s diet can aid in the control of postpartum weight gain.
- Relax and give yourself a break. It’s challenging enough to be a parent. Are you managing daily on a minimal sleep schedule? Despite the difficulty, you tend to pull it off. Popcorn is the perfect example of returning to basics.
- Get plenty of sleep. Our well-being and contentment depend on it so extensively. Those chores are less crucial.
- Set a bedtime for yourself. You’re fully aware of how sleep deprivation affects your children. You’re not immune, though you’re slightly better at concealing it.
- Seek assistance. You may need to delegate responsibilities to your loved ones. They are willing to lend a hand because they know you are struggling.
- Reduce your screen time before bed. It prevents the sleep hormone melatonin from being released, throwing off the body’s internal schedule. Your Facebook news feed could be your connection to the outside world and the source of stress and anxiety.
- Remember that you owe your body sleep. The lack of sleep becomes inconsequential after a while. Now that you only sleep six hours a night, you constantly yawn throughout the day. How far behind you are on sleep and how seriously it affects your mood and ability to think can help put things in perspective.
Medical Treatment for OSA
Women suffering from OSA symptoms may find relief with continued use of a CPAP direct machine and self-care.
Many factors, including normal pregnancy weight increase and hormone changes, might contribute to obstructive sleep apnea in moms.
Even though OSA can cause serious health problems, several therapies are available to help you get a better night’s sleep and feel better after pregnancy.