The COVID-19 pandemic has boosted babies’ sleep by 40 minutes a day, according to a new study. Researchers from Flinders University say having to work from home has had some real benefits, with parents feeling less drowsy during the day and children getting more shut-eye at night. Unfortunately, it’s not all sunshine and rainbows, as kids have also spent more time looking at screens and adults are feeling more depressed during quarantine.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, health officials have been asking the public to stay home to prevent COVID-19 and its variants from spreading. Being forced to work from home and avoid socializing has taken a toll on people’s mental health, but it’s also changing family dynamics as well.
Professor Michal Kahn says that for infants, night-time sleep duration is rising, but screen time is also going up too. For parents of infants, daytime sleepiness is actually going down, but they’re also experiencing mild increases in depressive symptoms. Kahn adds the study highlights the need to raise awareness to reduce infant screen-time and the daytime stresses many parents feel.
The findings appear in the journal Sleep Medicine.