Congratulations on the birth of your gorgeous little bundle of joy! Amidst all the excitement, smiles and joy, what with families, friends and relatives coming over, it’s pretty easy to get carried away and not get enough rest. Lack of proper sleep can take a toll on your immune system, making you more susceptible to illness, stress and lethargy, including weight gain. Not only does this affect you and your baby, but it affects the entire family in one way or the other. In order to prevent this snowballing effect of sleep deprivation, experts recommend planning a consistent sleep routine for your baby, so that they sleep at regular intervals, and you can sleep too. Here are some general strategies on helping your baby learn to sleep safe and well.
Encouraging good sleep habits
Consider a Feed time, Awake (also called Play) time, Sleep time structure so you can determine when your baby is hungry, rested, or sleepy. But remember every baby is different, and while a consistent sleep routine is required, try not to get fixated on it. Find a routine you and your baby can naturally fall into, and feel good about the decisions you’ve made. And make sure your enjoy this wonderful stage with your baby while you can, because oh boy, they will grow up in no time!
Look for tired signs
Babies generally show certain behaviours when feeling sleepy, such as becoming grumpy, fussy, quiet, staring, or losing interest in people or toys. If you miss these tired signs, you may find it gets difficult to settle your baby.
Gently settling strategies
You may want to massage your baby for 15 minutes prior to bedtime as it may help them fall asleep more easily. White noise can help soothe them to sleep, as it resembles the sounds heard by your baby while inside your womb - such as your heartbeat, and the movement of fluids through the placenta. Similar to the feeling of being inside the womb, the motion of a rocking chair can lull your baby to sleep.
Bedtime cues and sleep associations
A warm bath before going to bed, putting on a baby sleeping bag, and keeping the lights low can become bedtime cues. The 365 Sleep Bag can become a great part of your baby’s bedtime routine, by indicating sleep time to your baby, and help them feel secure and confident. It also acts as a familiar ‘comforter’ for your baby, making sleep times easier even when away from home.