It’s 3am. You’re lying in bed. Your eyes are gritty, but your mind is alert. Your little bundle of joy has already woken up three times tonight, and there’s every chance that they’re going to wake again soon. Even if they don’t stir, your body clock is telling you that it’s time to get up – confused from the goodness knows how many nights of midnight feeds and broken sleep. Being a new parent can be exhausting, but there are ways you can get in sync with your baby’s sleep patterns and enjoy a good night’s rest. After months of sleepless nights when Katie was born, I learnt that having a little flexibility in my own sleep routine allowed us both to get the rest we needed – meaning a happier, bubblier baby, and a less bleary-eyed me.

So, with that in mind, here are some tips on coping with tiredness as a new parent, and ensuring both you and your baby are able to sleep soundly more often.

Take care of yourself

When you have a baby to care for, it’s easy to forget to look after yourself. But you need to take every opportunity you can to recharge your batteries. This means accepting help from family and friends when it is offered (if you feel comfortable doing so), and making sure you catch up on sleep when your baby is napping during the day. When I was raising Katie, I also found that eating healthily and doing gentle exercise whenever I could boosted my energy – making me feel more positive, calm and ready to handle Katie’s noisy bouts of crying.

Understand your baby’s sleep patterns

Your baby is not going to fit into your established sleep routine. So, if you can, try to work with their sleeping patterns. This will mean having naps during the day, and alternating between light and deep sleep during the night. Naturally, you’re still going to be tired, but you will hopefully feel more rested than you would if you were trying to stay awake all day and only grasping a couple of hours’ fretful sleep every night.

Help your baby sleep soundly

Every parent will know that, if your baby sleeps well, you sleep well. To help your baby sleep better, you need to make sure they are comfortable during the night. Keep the room at 20–22.2 degrees, and use a sleeping sack so that they don’t get too hot or cold. I created Slumbersac sleeping bags to help parents, like myself, ensure their little one gets a safe and undisturbed night’s sleep. The breathable cotton keeps your baby’s body temperature at a comfortable level, while the all-in-one design removes the danger of having loose fabrics in the cot. Whenever your baby wakes up during the night, keep everything calm and relaxed to show them that it is time for sleep.