Practical Sleep Routine Guide for Moms Working Night Shift

Working night shifts has its unique challenges such as how to maintain a healthy sleep pattern , and getting quality and adequate sleep. Some ways you can improve on the quality of the sleep during the day include blocking noise & sound, plan for childcare, and cancelling out interruptions.

Tips on Getting Adequate & Quality Day Sleep when Working Night Shift

1. Block Noise and Daylight for Quality Sleep

To get adequate and quality sleep during the day after work, you need to have a quiet and peaceful time. You can only get adequate sleep if you sleep away from the noise so it will help if you are the only one in the house during the day.

Unfortunately people who work night sleep have to sleep during the day. But daytime is also the most noisy.

To contain the noise especially from outside and help you sleep, use earplugs, and a white noise machine. Further, if the light bothers you, the secret is to find ways to block it using blackout curtains, and blindfolds among others.  

2. Get a Reliable Childcare Plan during the Day

You will not be able to have adequate sleep during the day if you are still the designated child’s primary caregiver. You need to make arrangements on how and who will take care of the kids during the days as you sleep.

Go through childcare options and find one that is affordable and convenient for you, even if it is for half a day. By doing so you will get adequate and uninterrupted sleep.

By far daycare is the more ideal option for moms working at night as they are affordable and convenient. Do not feel guilt for sending kids to daycare while you sleep as it is only the way you will be well enough to have quality time with them later.

Read: Childcare Options for Night Shift Moms

3. Cancel Out External Interruptions

Since you are sleeping during the day, there are likely to be many disturbances from other family members, friends, or even neighbors. Ensure that when you get down to sleep, you will have uninterrupted sleep so that your sleep of full and quality.

You wont sleep well when you have calls and texts ringing on your phone now and then. It’s therefore critical that you black out all these sleep interruptions or disturbances.

An effective way of doing this is switching off your phone or putting it on silent. If you do not want to switch off your phone entirely, the secret is to set it to “Do not Disturb”. Later when you wake up, you will be able to call and message them back.

You have to create a little fortress of solitude for yourself. Most people may not understand that you need this time to sleep instead. It is hence important to make your circle understand why you need to have certain hours of the day uninterrupted by calls or messages.

Read: How to Maintain a Social Life While working Night Shift

4. Prioritize Self Care

The demands of working nights and parenting can weigh on you to a point of having mental health issues. When you are generally not well your quality of sleep is directly affected.

You therefore need to take care of yourself so that you can take care of others. If you do not take care of yourself, you will have trouble sleeping, depression, and other mental health issues.

For self care you can do things such as working out, meditation, healthy eating, and minimizing indulgence in alcohol and drugs. It will help you sleep better during the day and work well during the night.

Also you need sunlight exposure. Ensure that you get some level of sunlight. You can have sunlight time immediately after work before getting to sleep or in the evening before starting your shift.

Read: A Guide on Creating a Self Care Plan

How to Get Adequate & Quality Day Sleep when Working Night Shift

5. Create a Practical Bedtime Routine for Quality Daytime Sleep

Just like for kids, a bedtime routine allows you to unwind and prepare your body for sleep. The routine is especially crucial for night shift moms who have trouble getting to sleep. It helps you unwind and let your mind prepare to shut down and sleep.

A simple but healthy sleep routine can includes;

  • Distress and take dinner
  • A relaxing bath- 45 minutes
  • Reading a book- 30 minutes
  • or listening to music 30- minutes
  • Lighting a relaxing candle

The most ideal time to start your routine is 7 a.m. It allows to sleep between to pm to 5 pm to get ready for your next shift. You should aim for at least 7-8 hours of sleep.Do not consider the time spent on bedtime routine as wasted hours.

Also, avoid drinking stimulators hours before you’re going to sleep. Paying attention to sleep hygiene is key to good sleep/rest and better than starting medications/alcohol/stimulants that you can develop a dependence on.

How to Stay Alert at Night when Working Night Shift

1. Use a Standing Work Desk

It is highly unlikely that you will fall asleep while standing. While you may need to sit down once in a while consider doing most of your work while standing will generally keep you on your feet and off sleep.

Some jobs may require you to be on your feet most if not your entire shift. If not, choose to work on a standing work desk. You will notice that you can stay awake on your night shift. If you can’t get a standing desk, the secret is to get up and move every 15 minutes.

Read: Simple Office Exercise with No Sweat

2. Workout during Night Breaks

It may not sound ideal but yes working out at night is a thing and can ensure that you stay awake through out the night. Night jobs are usually more tiring than day jobs so you need to fight off this fatigue that can induce you to sleep.

An option would be some little exercise and working out to keep the body active and fight off sleepiness. It will help if your workplace has a gym as you are unlikely to find other gyms open during the night. 

Nonetheless, improvise on what you can and ensure you do some little fitness exercises on your breaks at work. Doing some exercises like push-ups or sit-ups can keep your blood flowing and avoid sleepiness. It is one of the most practical ways of keeping yourself active during your night shift.

Read: Workout Options for Moms Working Night Shift

Secrets & Tips on Staying Awake at Night for Night Shift Moms

3. Take Small Snacks and Coffee to Fight Sleep

Definitely staying awake at night is equally challenging as sleeping during the day. While your body will adjust to your daily sleep and work night rhythm, you need all the help you can get in staying awake.

Consider taking small meals. Further, a cup of coffee is always great to kick off that last part of the shift. It will ensure that your body stays alert as you work at night.

However, avoid getting dependent on caffeine and sugar as they have long-term health effects. Drink tea instead and only a little bit of caffeine. It is a hot drink and will keep you alert and your body healthy.

Also, ensure that you take a lot of water. The trick is that it will increase your trips to the washroom and keep you awake till your shift is over.  

4. Create a Routine around your Sleep Rhythm

Sometimes what’s works for others may not work for you. Some night workers can fall asleep immediately after they get off work and others need a few hours before they can get to sleep.

Some moms fall asleep easily while others need stimulators. Others can easily juggle family, friends, and work while others struggle. There is a hence no one thing that can make your sleep routine work to your advantage and stay awake during the night.

The point is to find exactly what works for you. Find a schedule that is most productive, efficient, convenient, and practical for you and work with it. Run routines that help you to live the most fulfilling and thriving life.

Listen to your body, and soul and feed them what they want. It is an easier way and a secret that you will have better sleep, work, and quality of life.

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