Working dads of newborn babies are more sleep deprived than mothers who stay at home, claimed a new book called "The Informed Parent: A Science-Based Resource for Your Child's First Four Years." The book outlines three studies that claim fathers with newborn babies get less sleep than mothers.
A study conducted in 2013, used wrist trackers to measure sleep levels of 21 first time parent pairs and compared the data. The results showed that fathers got fewer hours of sleep and more hours of confirmed sleepiness.
‘Despite being sleep deprived, working dads of newborns still work for long hours. However, mothers get to sleep during the day.’
AdvertisementMothers had more hours of sleep and had a more disturbed sleep, as they were waking up to feed their child. Another study conducted in 2012 surveyed more than 200 new fathers about their sleep habits. The study found that working fathers with newborns slept less than six hours a night but still worked for long hours and were extremely fatigued.
The study was backed up by another study conducted in 2004, which tracked 72 couples during the first month of their newborn's life.
The 2004 study also used wrist trackers and found that both mothers and fathers got roughly the same amount of sleep during the night. Mothers who stayed at home slept during the day while the working fathers did not.
"Without the ability to compensate for lost sleep during the day, these fathers simply rode out their fatigue while working," the authors said.
Andrew Bull, from Adelaide Australia, said that for him sleep deprivation was very common when his daughter was born.
"I was very keen to make sure I did my fair share as a dad, so when she woke for midnight feeds, I would get up, bring her into the bedroom to my wife, then take her back to the cot and get her back to sleep," he said.
Fathers would be more sleep deprived, and that he bore most of the sleep deprivation because his wife was at home with the baby all day.
"It did affect my productivity; I'd review work I'd done and had to redo things that were obviously done in a haze of drowsiness," said Andrew.
"It meant early nights whenever possible, and my social life suffered as well."