On my fridge is a picture of a mom. She is balancing on one foot, arms extended, in a perfect yoga pose As she serenely balances, she holds the baby in one arm, runs the household, keeps up with business, and still has time for a cup of tea and a good book. This picture embodies for me both the many roles modern moms fill, and the serenity needed to sustain it all.
Unfortunately, many moms don’t get the sleep they need to feel serene, or to keep up with the many aspects of their life.
In 2007, the National Sleep Foundation focused their annual Sleep In America poll on women’s sleep health. The title of their report tells the story, “Stressed Out American Women Have No Time for Sleep.” This last weekend I had the pleasure of discussing women’s sleep at the , held in Bellevue. When I asked the audience of moms how many had gotten enough sleep during the last week, only a few raised their hands.
The Sleep in America poll found these same trends, that “60% of women say they only get a good night’s sleep a few nights per week or less, and 67% say they frequently experience a sleep problem.” Seventy-four percent of stay at home moms reported insomnia at least a few nights each week, and the majority (59%) are “unrefreshed” during the day.
Remember all the ways that healthy sleep adds to our ability to function, and quality of life? Well, the poll reinforces this idea, with the conclusion that “Women’s lack of sleep affects virtually every aspect of their time pressed lives, leaving them late for work, stressed out, too tired for sex and little time for their friends.”
Four out of five women say that when they feel sleepy, they just accept and keep on. For optimal wellness, take another approach. Take the view that sleepiness is a sign that something is wrong, and then take steps to address it, by either getting more sleep time, or improving your quality of sleep.