When newborns first enter the world, they are unable to sleep for long stretches at a time because they need to eat so often. As they grow, weary moms and dads start dreaming to the day when their baby starts sleeping through the night, which usually comes sometime between three to six months. Here are a few simple tips to make sure your baby can start racking up those z’s.
1. Create A Soothing Bedtime Routine
A set bedtime routine will help your baby learn when it’s time to go to sleep. A simple format to remember would be the “4 b’s,” which includes bath, book, breast or bottle, and bed. Start with a relaxing warm bath and then snuggle up for a read-aloud session. Then it’s time for a nighttime feeding before settling down for bed. You can add whatever you like, a favorite lullaby, for example, to make bedtime easier.
2. Get Necessary Calories In During The Day
If your baby’s tummy is filled during waking hours, then they are less likely to wake up in the middle of the night. Try fitting in a few extra ounces right before bed to extend the sleep cycle. Do not feel rushed to add cereal to the bottle or start solids early; slightly increasing the formula or breast milk should be enough.
3. Use White Noise Instead Of Complete Quiet
You might laugh at comedy sketches of parents going to great lengths to make sure their house is super-silent during nap time, but that method could backfire in real life. If you get your baby used to sleeping in complete silence, they might start to wake easily at the slightest noises. It’s better to introduce white noise to help soothe a baby to sleep while also training them to stay asleep even if they hear a little noise.
4. Nudge The Sleep Schedule Rather Than Using Force
Some parents drive themselves crazy trying to stick to a rigorous sleep schedule. While having approximate bedtimes and naptimes can help set your sleep routine, your baby’s natural rhythm and sleep cycle is difficult to change. You’ll find it more natural to nudge the sleep cycle into the direction you’d like to go with sleepy bedtime rituals and slowly changing nap times. Try not to let perfection make bedtime an anxious or stressful event.
5. Find The Perfect Mattress
It’s a myth that any thin hard baby mattress will do fine; babies need just as much mattress ingenuity that adults do for a better sleep situation. A baby or toddler mattress should be washable, breathable, fireproof, and contain the proper materials and positioning to keep your baby comfortable and safe. A good mattress will help your baby fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer, so you can also get a good night’s rest.
With a few of these sleep tips under your belt, you’re bound to start seeing 6 to 8-hour stretches of sleep at last.