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  • Writer's pictureMike Douglas

World Sleep Day

Sleep, good quality sleep; I miss it! As a new parent it’s definitely something I’ve noticed a lack of.

We have been very lucky with how well Henry has slept, most of the time. Like any baby there’s at least some nights when one of us is up every couple of hours. I’ve had one night where he was up at 12am, 1am, 2am, 3am, 5am, 6am and then awake at 7.15am. That was a fun night.

So sleep is something we try to protect and support all three of us to get well. As the adults, we split our night shifts to make sure we both get a break. While we usually still wake up, we can at least go back to sleep a bit quicker.

In previous years I remember reflecting on bedtime routines and trying to get my brain ready for sleep. Well it’s only in the last couple of weeks I’ve started to have a routine again. The last seven months have very much been crawling into bed once Henry’s asleep at sometime between 11.30pm and 1.30am. Now he has a bedtime at 8pm, I’m thinking about my routine again.

I still mostly try to make sure I’m not using my phone too much in the bedroom, nothing more than 5-10 minutes. Apart from podcasts. I still listen to podcasts to go to sleep. Very rarely do I just ‘go to sleep’ without listening to something.

Thinking about our sleep, and getting 'good sleep' is really important. Here's an extract from The Sleep Charity's website on why that is and what they do.

Sleep deprivation can have a serious impact on emotional, physical and mental health and many people who are seeking our support are approaching crisis point, whether that’s adults or families. We aim to provide access to high quality information and advice to deal with most sleep issues, and ensure everyone understands the value of a good night’s sleep. We also campaign for improvements to the support available as well as providing  accredited training for professionals so they can offer sleep support to the people they work with.

Prior to their rebrand in 2019 to 'The Sleep Charity' reflecting on the work done to support all people, the charity actually started as 'The Children's Sleep Charity, founded by CEO Vicki Dawson, described on their website as a sleep deprived mum who wanted to ensure that every parent and carer in England and Wales had access to quality sleep support.

Back in podcast Ep183 Vicki from The Sleep Charity came on to talk about the work the charity was doing and why sleep is so important (listen to that episode here). Which reminds me, it would be great to invite them back for a future podcast! If you are looking to improve your sleep some of these other resources may also be helpful to check out:

For us, we will cross our fingers Henry continues to be a mostly good sleeper, and look forward to his hopefully getting full nights sleep; so we can too. Until then, I am continuing to be mindful about phone usage before bed. I'm also going to try to replan the squats I seem to keep doing just before bed, exercising just before rest is a big mistake by me.

It for sure is an interesting time, being mindful of our own sleep and also trying to teach sleep to a baby. While I'm likely not about to copy Henry's bath, book, songs, milk, sleep routine, I think teaching a baby sleep/ bedtime is a good reminder to think about how we manage our own bedtime routines, when we can.

How is your sleep? Do you have a set routine? Are you about to make one?


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