Being a new parent is a very exciting time!
It can also be exhausting, because many new parents are so caught up in caring for their child as best they can, that they forget to also look after themselves!
However, it is very important to look after your own health as well when you have a new baby. If you are well-rested and healthy you will be much more able to be a loving and effective parent to your little bundle of joy.
Here are some tips for staying healthy as a new parent:
- Get as much sleep as possible. Chronic lack of sleep will not only leave you irritable and less alert, it will also lower your immune system and leave you more susceptible to illness. When you have a new baby, your sleep schedule will already be disrupted by late night feedings, so try to make up this as much as possible by going to bed early and taking naps in the day if you need to. Take turns getting up in the night with the baby, and take the opportunity to sleep whenever the baby sleeps.
- Take a break. In order to keep your relationship with your partner healthy and rejuvenate your energy, it is important to take a night off from diaper changes and baby talk once in a while. Put on some clothes without spit-up stains on them, leave the baby with a sitter, and head out for a nice meal or a quiet walk. Taking a break doesn’t make you bad parents; it will actually make you less stressed and happier together.
- Eat a healthy and nutritious diet. This is especially true if you are a nursing mom because you will need to replace the nutrients that you are passing along through your breast milk. If you find it hard to make the time to prepare healthy meals, make them simple and prepare them in advance so that you can freeze portions for thawing later.
- Get some exercise! Even though you might be tired, keeping active will actually refresh you and give you more energy, so why not take the baby out for a walk in the stroller in the fresh air or join a post-natal yoga class?
Taking care of a new baby is a lot of work, which is why it is important to take care of yourself and stay healthy so that you can be the best parent you possibly can.