Dealing with Parental Burnout? You’re Not Alone — We’re Sharing Some Tips

Dealing with Parental Burnout? You’re Not Alone — We’re Sharing Some Tips

Parenting is the hardest and most rewarding “work” on the planet, but the last couple of years have been a challenge for every grown-up raising little ones.

All those last-minute (and long-term) child care closures.

Zoom school.

The return to in-person learning.

More closures.

A formula shortage! I

t’s. A. Lot. (Too much, really.)

It’s no wonder that two-thirds of parents meet the (nonclinical) criteria for parental burnout, according to a 2022 report from The Ohio State University College of Nursing. Let’s look closer at this issue, signs that you might need some support — and how to get help.

mom looking tired

What is Parental Burnout?

The New York Times describes parental burnout as “a nonclinical term that means are so exhausted by the pressure of caring for their children, they feel they have nothing left to give.” It’s the feeling of having burned the candle at both ends for too long. While stress and occasional feelings of anxiety are normal (especially when raising tiny humans), parental burnout is different. The report from Ohio State describes it as “feeling exhausted, irritable, emotionally detached or overwhelmed with parenting your children” despite wanting to be the best parent you can be.

diverse family looking happy

Risk Factors and Symptoms of Parental Burnout

According to the researchers, certain factors may influence a parent’s likelihood to experience burnout. They include:

  • Being a working parent (“due to the challenge of juggling multiple stressors and demands at work and at home”)
  • Being female, since mothers tend to be primary caregivers.
  • The number of children at home. (More children means more likely to report feeling burned out.)

Feeling burnout has nothing to do with being a “good” parent. The signs include: feeling distracted or checked out, worrying, feeling more irritable, a shorter temper than usual, etc.

dad with kids looking tired

How to Cope With Parental Burnout

We have incredible empathy and compassion for parents, who are just trying to do their best right now. Here are a few ways to cope in the moment, according to the research:

  • Remind yourself that self-care isn’t selfish. It’s how you fill your cup. Even a few minutes can make a small difference.
  • Talk to someone. For the little things, vent to a friend via text! And don’t hesitate to reach out to a health-care professional. Your primary-care provider can be a wonderful resource and help put you in touch with a therapist.
  • Find ways to deal with your stress every day. That could mean morning treadmill runs while the kids are still sleeping, a family tickle fest when everyone gets cranky or listening to your favorite podcast after morning drop-off.
  • Prioritize sleep. Tempting as it might be to cut into your rest time in order to crank out more work, don’t do it. “Future you” needs a good night’s sleep tonight!

The struggles of parents hit close to home for us. Our founder, Wilson Lau, got the idea for NuTraditions when he was in the thick of those sleepless newborn days. Wilson wanted nothing more than to be present with his young family — and have steady energy day and night.

He knew his late grandmother’s Traditional Chinese Medicine preparations held the secrets, but he barely had time to make coffee (cup after cup of it), let alone simmer herbs all day and remember to take them.

That’s how we ended up making a system of products rooted in that ancient herbal wisdom that are almost instantly ready to take. Hello Dreams™ Sleep Strips with Melatonin and Calm Down™ herbal blend quickly deliver TCM wisdom for people like Wilson, who know the importance of self-care but lack a lot of time to make it happen.*

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.