I’ve always believed that sleep is what I excel at. “If I could just discover a way to make money off of this, and turn it into my career!” I’d joke.
I was not thinking about things like sleep hygiene or if I was getting enough blue light from screens prior to going to bed. I was among the people who could sleep (and remain) asleep quite effortlessly. In reality, if I ever had sleep issues whatsoever and was when I was left on my own I could easily get a little too often.
I was designed for slow mornings, and breakfast in the bed. It’s remarkable to me that I’ve ever been capable of dressing and feeding myself, completing an hour-long commute, and getting into the office before nine a.m. (OK it was 9:30 a.m.)
After that, I became a mommy.
Everybody tells you that it is first the sleep you’ll lose when you are an infant. I don’t know how many times I was told to “get your rest today,” as if it was possible to save all those hours to use as credit in the years to follow. This wasn’t to say that I believed in or trust those well-meaning parents, but as with most situations in parenting, you won’t know until you’re already involved in it.
I didn’t realize that the night I had my baby was the last night I’d be able to sleep an unbroken 8 hours, for the long months to follow. I could not imagine the kind of bone-deep fatigue which would result from waking up every couple of hours (or certain nights or even each 45-minute interval) for months and weeks for months.
As newlyweds, we, along with my husband, needed to understand how to cope with the side of sleep deprivation. I kept telling myself that it would eventually get better, and this phase was just temporary. It did get better baby girls are just amazing when they are this way. But it felt as if we were playing the lottery each night.
My experience could be unique to the issues that new parents face However, research has shown that an alarming amount of Americans don’t get enough sleep.
Based on the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services the number of people who use it is 60% of adults who are enrolled in Trusted Source and just 20% of high school-aged teens who use the service have enough sleep each night.
In a study of health diary readers, 3 out of five said they sleep only lightly and over half suffer from discomfort or pain that hinders sleeping asleep or sleep.