Could you be suffering from ‘baby lag’?

Sleep expert coins term to describe the feeling of extreme exhaustion often felt by new parents


Hey there sleepyhead, great news – you aren’t alone in feeling absolutely exhausted! After extensive research Baby brand Johnsons’ in-house sleep expert, Dr Dev Banerjee, has coined the term ‘babylag‘ to describe the effects of the utter sleep deprivation you face with a new baby in the house. 


The new research shows that 77 per cent of new parents struggle to get a good nights sleep and suffer from that all too familiar can’t-keep-your-eyes-open, desperate-for-a-nap syndrome as a result. 

Likening the feeling to that of jet lag after a long-haul flight, Dr Banerjee and Johnsons have discovered that less than half of new parents manage to get their head down for the recommended eight hours sleep. 

Everyone can identify with the unusual kinds of behaviour that sleep deprivation, which is actually a recognised form of torture, can lead to. Who hasn’t put milk in the cupboard, hung dry washing on the line and fallen asleep in the shower? 

So, what is it keeping mum and dad awake at night? The most common answers were hunger (baby, not dad) at 32 per cent, teething at 29 per cent and, perhaps most frustrating of all, for no apparent reason whatsoever scored 23 per cent. 

To get a head start in combatting sleep deprivation, establishing a routine is key. It is a great way of letting baby know it is time for bed. Johnsons suggest a 3-step routine, which has had a 69 per cent success rate of reducing baby’s anger and hostility, making it easier to send them off to sleep. 

  1. Bath – gently cleanse baby with a specially formulated baby bath product, such as Baby Bedtime Wash
  2. Massage – A gentle massage can help to calm baby down. Using Bedtime Oil can help baby, and parents, to relax
  3. Off to sleep – Enjoy quiet time together by singing softly or reading a book

The study, which surveyed 1000 mums with children aged 0-4 years, also found that sleep is certainly worth it’s weight in gold, or more likely in chocolate and clothes…

  • 31 per cent of parents would give up alcohol for a month in exchange for an uninterrupted night’s sleep
  • 33 per cent would give up buying new clothes for six months
  • 27 per cent would relinquish their mobile for a week
  • 22 per cent would give up television for a week
  • 31 per cent would give up chocolate

How about you? Would you give up buying new clothes or eating chocolate in exchange for a good night’s sleep, if you could? 

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