Sleep & Breastfeeding - can they coexist?
Lack of sleep for new parents. It's such a common issue that it's often treated as a joke. [to the expectant parents] "Sleep now while you can!" Haha....ha...ha. Yeah, we get it. It's nearly impossible to keep a normal, healthy sleep routine with a new baby in the house, especially if you are a breastfeeding mom, who must be awake enough every 2-3 hours (minimum, at first) round the clock to feed on-demand and establish your milk supply. It's rough. Millions, billions?, have survived this trial by sleep deprivation, so you're in good company, but that doesn't really help lesson the anxiety you may have.
Knowing all of this, I was pleasantly surprised when my podcast guest, Carolyn LaPan, had some actionable tips for squeezing in more and better sleep when following an on-demand breastfeeding schedule. Her advice is based in what research has established about circadian rhythm, sleep cycles, and the benefits of short (10-20 minute) 'power' naps or Non Sleep Deep Rest (NSDR) periods (shoutout to Dr. Andrew Huberman!). It's 1000x more useful than "sleep a lot before the baby is born."
In addition to this advice, we touch on the importance of having people to help care for the baby they aren't actively feeding, giving breastfeeding moms more opportunities to sleep. I think I could have asked Carolyn to talk about the importance of sleep for two hours and she gladly would! I love connecting with others who have a deep passion and expertise in health and wellness topics that I can learn from and share with my audience. You can listen to the full episode on YouTube or download to your favorite podcast app.