It may not be news to the ladies but new research has found that women’s sleep is affected by having children in the house. Unlike their male counterparts who’s sleep is relatively unaffected by children.

This isn’t exactly life changing news for most mums but it may be a nice little reassurance. “I think these findings may bolster those women who say they feel exhausted,” said Dr Kelly Sullivan, lead researcher. “Our study found not only are they not sleeping long enough, they also report feeling tired throughout the day.”

The study involved a nationwide telephone survey. Participants were asked how long they slept and how many days they felt tired in the past month. No other factors could be linked to how long younger women were sleeping except the number of children in the house.

The odds of insufficient sleep increase 50% with each child.

Researches found that younger women with children reported feeling tired 14 days per month on average. But having children in the house wasn’t associated to how long men slept.

“Getting enough sleep is a key component of overall health and can impact the heart, mind and weight,” said Sullivan. “It’s important to learn what is keeping people from getting the rest they need so we can help them work toward better health.”

Tips to improve your sleep

If you’re a mum who’s sleep deprived here are some tips to help improve your sleep quality.

  1. Wind down earlier. Gone are the days of jumping in bed and drifting off to sleep quickly. As a busy mum you no likely have 1,000 thoughts racing through your mind. Not to mention the fact that you’ll probably be woken during the night for one thing or another. Prepare for this by going to bed a little earlier than usual. Sleep Better suggests at least nine hours before you have to get up.
  2. Prepare for tomorrow. Put your mind at ease knowing that you’re prepared for the next day before you fall asleep. Get the uniforms ready, pack school lunches and do what you need to do to relax and feel ready for day ahead.
  3. Get your room right. Ensure your bedroom is dark, comfortable and relaxing environment. Having washing piled up on the floor or toys stacked in the doorway won’t help relax your mind. Find somewhere else to store them so you can get some shut eye.
  4. Watch what you eat and drink. Alcohol and caffeine can have a damaging affect on your sleep cycle. Avoid consuming them late at night in order to sleep better.
  5. Meditate. Download a free app and try meditating for a few minutes before bed. This may help put you in a relaxed state ready for slumber.