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Parents face up to SIX YEARS of disrupted sleep after the birth of their first baby, study finds 

Parents face up to SIX YEARS of disrupted sleep after the birth of their first baby, study finds

  • Mothers with one baby had less interrupted sleep than those with more than one
  • They take on most parenting work and spend many nights up with the new baby
  • Sleep disruption is often due to infants typically sleeping in short periods 

Parents’ sleep schedules often do not return to pre-pregnancy levels for up to six years after the birth of a first baby, a study has discovered.

Mothers of newborns take on most of the parenting work and spend many a night up with the baby. 

But those looking after their first child are more likely to have better sleep than mothers on their second or third.

Mothers of newborns take on most of the parenting work and spend many a night up with the baby

Sleep disruption is often due to infants typically sleeping in short periods. A total of 111 parents had their sleep patterns studied after birth. The research by Canada’s McGill University was published in the Journal of Sleep Research.

Mothers with one baby had less interrupted and better-quality sleep than those with more than one child.

Researchers said this may be because they do not also have to care for older children. 

Fathers tended to be able to sleep more because, in the sample, 96 per cent of them worked, ensuring mothers accepted more of the load.

Mothers with one baby had less interrupted and better-quality sleep than those with more than one child

Mothers with one baby had less interrupted and better-quality sleep than those with more than one child

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