Sleepless nights are a rite of passage for most new parents. The truth is we become so used to it, it feels like it should be like that! With a new baby comes this (sleepless nights) package!
But don’t despair. You can help your baby sleep all night. Honestly! There is hope mom. Getting your newborn to sleep longer stretches at night is not a perfect process. It’s all about trying new things and finding something that works well for your baby.
When your baby sleeps better, you will notice a more patient, more tolerant, more engaging baby after a good night’s rest or quality nap. But where do you start? Let’s look at some tips which will make nights more pleasant and peaceful for both you and your little angel, after all, good sleep is the best medicine for everybody!
Always place your baby on his or her back to sleep
You should always, place your baby to sleep on his back, from the moment he’s born, to prevent sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). It is also the best sleeping position for your baby.
Sleeping your baby on their back (known as the supine position) every night is one of the most protective actions you can take to ensure your baby is sleeping as safely as possible.
It is much safer for your baby to be in their cot with just the sheets or blankets, and no extras which could be pulled over their face or cause an accident and interfere with their peaceful night sleep.
Use A Firm Sleep Surface
Soft surfaces increase the risk of suffocation if the baby would become face down in the mattress or couch. To reduce the risk of suffocation, have your baby sleep on his/her back on a firm mattress.
If your mattress is uncomfortable, you can’t sleep! This can be a nightmare! Imagine your little one sleeping uncomfortable all night long, not only will it keep your baby restless, but you too!
One of the most important considerations parents should have about their baby’s mattress is the firmness level. Remember that firmer is always better for your baby, and he will sleep much better.
It can be dangerous if a crib mattress is soft, floppy, or saggy. Keep that in mind. Our baby’s health and safety always come first. Keep your baby happy and healthy and you will also be happy! Happiness starts with a good night’s sleep!
Do Not Put Anything Else In The Crib
As cute as it may look, don’t put your baby in bed with any soft objects until they are at least 12 months old. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, pillow-like toys, blankets, quilts, crib bumpers, and other bedding increase the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) and death by suffocation or strangulation.
Believe it or not, a doll or stuffed toy could cover your baby’s face and suffocate them. The safest option is to keep your baby’s crib free of clutter, including stuffed toys. And all these things can disturb the baby while sleeping!
I know moms like to buy cute teddy bears for their babies, but rather give the toy to them when they older. Remember, never leave your child unattended, always keep an eye! These little angels are our whole life!
Your baby will never have a peaceful sleep if they sleep in a “too hot” environment in the mids of summer! Avoid using the following while your baby is sleeping.
- A hat while the baby is asleep.
- Too many layers of bedding including synthetics
- Covering your baby with heavy duvets
- Too many layers of non-breathable clothing
- Sleeping bags that are too hot and heavy
- A hot bedroom, monitor your baby’s room temperature
Always choose natural fibers for your baby’s clothing and bedding.
Natural fibers include:
- viscose from bamboo
- muslin (made from cotton or viscose)
Keep Your Baby Away From Smokers
Imagine your baby sleeping while people smoking around him! It is so unhygienic and unhealthy for your little angel in the first place!
Babies who are exposed to tobacco smoke either prenatally or postnatally are reported to have poorer sleep quality and more symptoms of sleep-disordered breathing than those who are not exposed.
A study from the Monell Chemical Senses Center reports that nicotine in the breast milk of lactating mothers who smoke cigarettes disrupts their infants’ sleep patterns. Infants spent less time sleeping overall and woke up from naps sooner when their mothers smoked prior to breastfeeding, says lead author Julie A.
Breathing in smoke can cause irritation or swelling in your baby’s airways. Being in or near smoke can cause wheezing and breathing problems. When your baby inhales the smoke, harmful toxins may get into her/his little body.
Whatever you do, never allow any person to smoke near your baby. Well, they should not even smoke in your house, for the health and safety of the whole family!
Put Your Baby To Sleep With A Pacifier
Even if your little one isn’t crying, sucking a pacifier may help them fall asleep and stay asleep longer, and that also means more sleep for you, too! Pacifiers are safe for your newborn. A very important benefit is that they are associated with lowering the risk of sleep-related deaths in newborns, especially babies under the age of 4 months.
Some researchers think that sucking on a pacifier might help babies develop better nerve reflexes and breathing muscles. During sleep and nap time, pacifiers help babies fall asleep and stay asleep.
Babies also relax and self-soothe back to sleep if they wake up. Always keep your baby’s pacifiers sterilized. Use one-piece pacifiers that can’t come apart. This reduces the risk of choking.
Set A Bedtime Routine
Studies showed that babies who followed a nightly bedtime routine went to sleep easier, slept better, and cried out in the middle of the night less often.
Try out any of these bedtime activities.
Keep them ‘busy’ during the day, play with them, get them tired from the day’s activities, but quiet before their bedtime. Try these activities at the same time and in the same order, night after night.
Keep the activities calm and peaceful, especially toward the end of the routine. Your baby should be tired at bedtime and not excited! I used to bathe my babies before bedtime, many babies enjoy bathing right before bedtime, which calms them down. Try to keep it the same hour every time.
Make nighttime conditions in your baby’s bedroom consistent. If they wake up in the middle of the night, the sounds and lights in the room should be the same as when they fell asleep.
Each Baby Is Unique In Their Own way
Some babies sleep much more than others. Some sleep for long periods, others in short bursts. Some soon sleep through the night, while some don’t for a long time.
If you’re not sleeping at the same time as your baby, don’t worry about keeping the house silent while they sleep. It’s good to get your baby used to sleep through a certain amount of noise.
All babies change their sleep patterns. Just when you think you have it sorted and you’ve all had a good night’s sleep, the next night you might be up every 2 hours. If your baby is having problems sleeping or you need more advice about getting into a routine, speak to your doctor. Your baby’s health and safety are the most important!
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