A study published earlier this year found what every parent already knows: having kids profoundly disturbs new parents’ sleep patterns. But what might not have been realized is for how long they could go before getting a full night's sleep.

While sleep satisfaction and duration hit rock bottom during the first few months after the birth, the study concluded that new parents’ sleep patterns could continue to be negatively affected up to six years, impacting both mothers and fathers.

However, women were found to be more affected in the first few months. Mothers lost more than an hour of sleep each night. Fathers only lost about 15 minutes of sleep. Six years on, mothers still slept about 20 minutes less, while fathers held steady at 15 minutes less.

The study also noted that first-time parents were the most impacted compared to experienced parents. And breastfeeding mothers in the first half a year after birth led to even more sleep deprivation.

New Orleans parents need not fret. Check out Nola Family’s profile of a local pediatrician’s mission to help Big Easy babies, and their parents, sleep better. Then head over to our Tips for Helping Your Baby Sleep Better for more guidance.

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