Sunday, 29 July 2012

Mums Lose Over a Month’s Sleep in Baby’s First Year!

A new study from the UK’s leading discount website has found that, on average, mothers lose 2.05 hours sleep a night throughout the first year of their baby’s life. However, two fifths of mothers said that it ‘wasn’t as bad’ as they had predicted it to be when pregnant.

 As part of ongoing research into the parenting habits of Britons, the UK’s leading discount website has conducted a study of 1,091 mothers across the UK with children aged 1-2 years, in order to discover how many hours of sleep were lost in the first year of their baby’s life.

The study, conducted by, initially asked the respondents if they experienced ‘broken sleep’ throughout the first year of their baby’s life, to which 98% said ‘yes’. The remaining 2% of respondents claimed that they had not.

The 98% of mothers who stated that they did experience broken sleep throughout the first year of their child’s life were asked to estimate how many times their baby woke, on average, per night. The average response from mothers taking part was ‘3.9 times’, with all answers taken into account. When asked how long they were awake for whilst tending to their baby on each occasion, the study found that, on average, the respondents were awake for 31.6 minutes each time.
According to the research, prior to having children the respondents slept for an average of 7.8 hours a night. Therefore, if the average mother woke 3.9 times each night for 31.6 minutes at a time, they lost an average of 2.05 hours sleep a night; subsequently sleeping, on average, for just 5.75 hours a night.

In order to discover how many hours sleep parents lost in the first year of their baby’s life, the average number of 2.05 hours sleep lost per night was multiplied by 365 days. According to the results, in the course of one year, mothers would have lost 748.25 hours sleep; totalling 31.8 days.

Though this equation established that mothers lose 31.8 days of sleep a year through tending to their baby throughout the night, the study found that more than two thirds, 67%, of the mothers asked felt that they ‘got used’ to the broken sleep.

More than half, 53%, of the mothers polled stated that they shared the responsibility of nursing their baby back to sleep with their partner.  A further 44% stated that the reduced hours of sleep was something that they found ‘difficult’; however 39% said that it was ‘better’ than what they predicted it would be whilst they were pregnant.

Mark Pearson, Chairman of, said the following about the findings:

“When starting to conduct this study, I was confident that the amount of hours sleep that was lost by parents would have been high, but to see that a whole month of sleep is lost per year by mothers really puts it in perspective! Having a baby can be a big shock to parents, not only due to lack of sleep but the cost and the shift of priorities. No matter how hard parents prepare and how much they research, no one can ever really predict how a baby will behave until it’s with you- particularly how much the baby will want to sleep!”

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