Let’s talk about studies!
Nowadays there is a study for almost everything out there, especially on controversial issues.
If you are on one side you will find a study which supports that idea, but funny enough, if you have the exact opposite opinion, you will find a study on that point of view too.
For example, there is one study from 2021 who states that babies with healthy sleep habits (ex. longer night sleep) have a lower risk of obesity later on. On the other hand there is another study from 2016 which claims that the risk of obesity for unhealthy sleep habits like late bedtime is valid only for preschool and older children.
This type of information can be beautifully crafted in an article, depending on which side you are on, but at the same time it can be very confusing.
So, how to filter all this information and trust the one which is truly reliable?
How to evaluate a solid study?
In my opinion, there are some things we should consider in assessing a paper or a study:
- Who did the study and if it’s a trustful, objective and recognised institution or qualified researchers in the field (not a blog or even an article written by a journalist)
- When the study was taken and if the information is still up to date
- Where the study was taken and how much the local climate and cultural context influenced the outcome
- If more studies came to the same or a similar conclusion
- If the study has been done on a representative sample (ex. 9 vs. 1900 respondents)
- If there is a link to the actual study and not just a reference or an interpretation of it.
A reliable study about the long term & negative impact of sleep deprivation on parents
Okay, now that we cleared that out, I would like to bring to your attention one study I find very reliable and relevant for every parent.
This study was published in 2019 in the Oxford Sleep Research Society and was done by the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin), Germany, Department of Psychology, University of Warwick, Coventry, UK and Department of Psychology, West Virginia University, Morgantown, USA, on a large population-representative panel from Germany. During the period of observation (2008–2015), 2541 women and 2118 men reported sleep satisfaction and sleep duration, before and after the birth of their children.
This thoroughly documented research came to the conclusion that “neither mothers’ nor fathers’ sleep fully recovers to pre-pregnancy levels up to 6 years after the birth of their first child.”
At the same time, this study reveals that “effects of sleep deficiency are more pronounced in first-time parents, in mothers compared with fathers, and in breastfeeding compared with bottle-feeding mothers”.
However, household income and the type of parenthood (dual vs. single) do not seem to make a difference on these postpartum sleep challenges, according to this research.
So, why wait almost 6 years after the birth of your child to fully get your sleep back and relax, if you can achieve a restorative sleep for the whole family within the first year of your baby’s life?
Why not save your relationships, balance your emotional well-being, cognitive function, daytime performance, improve your physical & mental health in just 2-3 weeks with baby sleep coaching?
This alternative solution is not easy, I must add, but it’s so worth it, with no side effects whatsoever.
If you feel like you are open for a change and you desperately want to help your baby and the entire family improve their sleep, you can book a free Discovery Call and we can chat.