Rest Easy, Mom!
New mother + new baby = lack of sleep. Here, some common postpartum sleep saboteurs -- and solutions to help you rest easier.
Sleep saboteur: Nighttime interruptions. Cumulative sleep deprivation will make the days ahead bleak indeed.
Solution: Strategize with your partner so you both get long(ish) stretches of sleep, says Uzzi Reiss, M.D., co-author of How to Make a New Mother Happy (Chronicle Books). Take turns with nighttime feedings, and use earplugs and an eye mask if you're a light sleeper.
Sleep saboteur: Insomnia. Both the thrill and the worry of being a mom can trigger sleepless spells.
Solution: Practice good sleep "hygiene" measures like keeping the bedroom dark, and avoid doing other activities in bed, such as reading or watching TV.
Sleep saboteur: Mood problems. Sleep disruption can be a symptom of both anxiety and depression.
Solution: If you're mildly blue, avoid dehydration, which lowers mood. If mood issues become serious, see your doctor about treatment. Since sleeping problems can actually add to your mood woes, act now.