1 in 3 parents lie about kid's sleep to show they're perfect
The pressure of turning into a 'perfect parent' is now so high that a third of parents admit lying about their child's sleeping patterns, a new study has revealed.
New mothers are under increasing pressure due to infants waking up in the night, as they are unable to get enough sleep.
According to a survey undertaken by Netmums, a fifth of those who admit lying about it pretend their child is sleeping through the night.
Parents also frequently cover up how badly they were coping with sleep deprivation - 62 percent of the third who lied, and one in 50 mothers and fathers are so desperate for sleep they have hired a specialist to help them - costing 1,000 pounds a week.
The report showed a quarter of all UK children wake up before 6.30am everyday - meaning their parents never get enough sleep.
New parents have even reported serious incidents as a result of lack of sleep, with some accidentally starting fires in the kitchen by placing baby sterilising equipment on the hob, while others have collapsed with sleep deprivation and been hospitalised.
While the majority of parents (59 percent) said that they were happy with their family's bedtime routine, one in ten admitted that getting children to sleep is a "struggle", with three percent believing they have a "real problem".
Almost half of families surveyed, said they had suffered from sleep deprivation, with nearly a third (31 percent) saying lack of sleep left them "exhausted".
Netmums said that parenting gurus are piling unnecessary pressure on new mothers by claiming newborns should sleep through the night, when in reality only 26 percent do by 12 weeks old.
The study shows less than two thirds (63 percent) of infants get unbroken sleep by 12 months old.
And although more than three quarters of children sleep through by two years old, 16 percent of parents said that their older children still "wake regularly" in the night.
Most of the parents (38 percent) still prefer using traditional methods, such as enforcing sleep routines, to teach babies to sleep, along with 37 percent who found controlled crying was successful for them.
But one in five desperate parents said that they have tried driving their children in the car until they fall asleep, while one in 33 are turning to modern devices such as sleep apps.
The research also revealed Britain's favourite bedtime is between 7pm to 7.30pm, with over a third of children getting tucked up in bed at this time, followed by one in five between 7.30pm to 8pm.
However, one in 33 families do not put youngsters to bed until 9.30pm or later, while a further three percent admit they do not have set bedtime - leaving kids exhausted.
One in five parents have turned to the web for sleep advice including chatting with other parents and experts on Netmums, along with 20 percent who ask for help from friends and family and 21 percent who discuss problem with their heath visitor.
The research examined sleep habits for newborns to children aged ten of 10,766 UK families to mark the start of National Child Sleep Week.
"While many so-called parenting gurus are well meaning, they can set unrealistic expectations of babies' sleep patterns, and when children don't follow it, parents feel like failures and are convinced they are doing something 'wrong'," the Telegraph quoted Netmums Health Visitor and sleep specialist Maggie Fisher as saying.
"This research shows there is no 'one size fits all' solution to children's sleep. Different approaches work for different families and even different children within the same family, and for National Child Sleep Week, we aim to help you find what will work best for you," she added.