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Why One Study Says a Good Parent Needs Sleep

7 minute read


A good night’s sleep makes you feel refreshed and ready to take on the challenges of the next day. Getting enough sleep has been shown to be beneficial for your overall health, which is why those 8 to 9 hours are important.

Recent research has also found that certain parenting styles are linked to the amount of sleep you get each night. It seems that sleep impacts more aspects of your life than originally thought.

How Sleep Helps With Parenting

All this time we thought sleep only impacted our health, but it turns out that the amount of sleep you get is correlated to your parenting style. Individuals that have difficulty falling asleep or do not get the recommended amount of sleep each night display permissive parenting styles.

| Related: The 20 Best Natural Sleep Hacks |

Permissive parenting is characterized by inconsistent and even non-existent discipline. The lack of restful sleep each night not only takes a toll on your health, but can influence the future behavior of your child.

Disrupted sleep is common when there is a young child in the house, but researchers wanted to discover if there was a link between sleep and parenting of adolescents. Without sleep, your physical and mental well-being is at risk, so it makes sense that every aspect of your life may in turn be affected.

As your children age, parental involvement is still instrumental, and your sleep patterns can influence how well your teenager adjusts to life socially, behaviorally, and emotionally.

| Related: Why Better Sleep Means Better Joint Health |

Poor sleep quality in parents was found to correlate with permissive parenting in teens. This permissive style is linked to more risk taking among teenagers, which can include substance abuse, delinquent behavior, and hanging out with delinquent peers.

The link between permissive parenting and heightened vulnerability to delinquent behavior in teens is well established. The connection to sleep is what qualifies as a discovery.

A recent study found that mothers who had regularly disrupted sleep were reported as having more permissive styles of parenting. Lower reports were made for mothers that got enough sleep each night.

A lack of sleep has been known to increase levels of irritability, impaired attention, and willingness to put things off until later. As much as this impacts your daily life, this can be a real danger when it comes to the life of your teen.

Children of every age need consistency and discipline to prepare them for adulthood, and the choices you make during their youth will impact their future. Getting the right amount of sleep seems like an easy solution, and it benefits both you and your children.

| Related: 10 Reasons Why You Feel Tired With No Energy |

Every parent understands how important it is for their child to get sleep, but they need to understand it is important for themselves, too.

How Sleep Keeps You Healthy

Sleeping not only helps with your parenting skills but it is a necessary component to overall good health. Besides helping you keep your kids focused on the right path, sleeping between 7 and 9 hours each night will prevent irritability and boost overall physical and mental performance.

Improved productivity: Getting a good night’s sleep has been proven to improve concentration,  which in turn boosts performance and productivity. A study of medical interns found that during extended work hours, more errors were made following a night with disrupted sleep.

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When you get enough sleep, you will see improved problem-solving skills, focus, and memory instead.

Mood boost: Sleep clearly has an impact on your brain, as we have all experienced being moody after a restless sleep. In addition to this, your mood can also be altered.

Over time, too little sleep can cause depressive symptoms to develop.

Protect your heart: Sleep quality and duration has an effect on your mood as well as the health of your heart. Continual disrupted sleep patterns increase your risk of serious diseases, including heart disease as studies have found that the risk for stroke is notably higher in people that routinely do not get enough sleep.

Diabetes control: Lack of sleep has been shown to affect blood sugar levels and reduce insulin sensitivity. Studies indicate that fewer than 6 hours of sleep each night can lead to the development of prediabetes, but these symptoms can be resolved if a healthy sleep pattern is re-established.

The less sleep you get, the higher your risk for developing diabetes will be.

Enhanced immunity: Even the smallest loss in sleep has been linked to impaired immunity, and the common cold has been known to show up more in people that regularly miss out on deep sleep. When you sleep eight hours or more a night, you reduce the risk of catching a cold or any other infection lurking out there.

Reduced inflammation: Inflammation is linked to the most serious diseases out there, including heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and even cancer. Less sleep has been found to activate inflammatory markers which initiate extensive cell damage.

Regularly getting less than 8 hours of sleep has been found to increase your risk for irritable bowel syndrome and other inflammatory-related conditions.

Weight management: The less sleep you get, the more calories you end up eating the next day. Sleep disruptions interfere with appetite-controlling hormones, and you end up consuming larger meals.

With hormone disruption and less motivation to exercise because you are tired, weight gain can become a real problem.

Social interactions: Losing sleep could cost you to lose friends too. If your irritability affects your parenting style, you can bet that your other social interactions will be affected too.

The Bottom Line

Getting a good night’s sleep is beneficial for your own well-being and the well-being of your child. They need to get enough sleep to stay healthy, and so do you.

Be the best version of yourself by giving your body the sleep it needs. Then you can be fully prepared for whatever challenges are in store, including the challenges of parenting.

When you set a bedtime for your kids, make sure you set one for yourself too.  

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