When you have a baby, one of the biggest challenges is making sure they get enough sleep. Not only can poor sleep affect their feeding and behaviour, but if they’re up all night then so is the rest of the house! To help settle your little one and make sure everyone gets their required rest, try these seven simple tips.
1. Set a night-time routine
It’s important to establish a good bed-time routine at night. Some good ideas include giving them a bath followed by a little baby massage, a milk feed and then a song or story. You also should decide on a specific time to put them to bed each night and stick to it so their body clock gets into a good rhythm. This bedtime can stay the same for years, which helps you as they grow older too.
2. Soothe them to sleep with sound
Some babies respond very well to soft music playing or other sounds such as waterfall and rain recordings, or even just white noise. By popping it on when it’s bed time, they’ll soon associate the sounds with sleeping.
This can also be very helpful if you have other children in the house who may make a lot of noise or you live near a busy street. There’s lots of different music apps out there for your device, but we love Kinderling Kids Radio‘s free app which lets you stream and download their soothing Sleepy Soundtracks on demand.
3. Create nap rituals during the day
While most people focus on the night-time, if a baby doesn’t get enough sleep during the day then they’ll be overtired and unsettled in the evening. So it’s important to work out how many naps you think they need and then create a little ritual around them so your baby gets used to knowing when it’s nap time – for example, taking them for a quick walk outside, doing a nappy change and then giving them a feed before putting them down.
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4. Use a hot water bottle to warm sheets
When the weather gets cooler, a cold bed can prevent bub from falling asleep quickly. A neat trick is to pop a water bottle under their blanket around 20 minutes before bedtime to make their sheets toasty warm. Just remember to remove the water bottle before you put them in bed, and don’t use electric blankets or anything like that.
5. Swaddles and sleeping bags
Babies love feeling snug and secure which is why wrapping your baby in a swaddle is highly recommended. Not only does it work brilliantly for encouraging better sleep, but they’re not able to scratch themselves either.
Another fantastic alternative to swaddling is a baby sleeping bag. There are lots of different sleeping bag options out there, and as most come with a zip, they’re very easy to use and won’t come undone like a swaddle can. Plus they’re super cute!
6. Give them a comforter
Introducing a comforter is another great way to help bub get ready to sleep. If you’re using a little blankie, you can even put some breast milk on it or rub it against your skin so it smells like you to further reassure your little one.
Comforters work really well when you’re travelling or just out and about because they’re very portable. If you only give it to them when it’s nap or sleep time, then your baby will know what to do no matter what time of day or whether they’re in bed, the car, grandma’s house or the pram.
7. Find the right style for you
Not all settling tricks suit every baby so it’s best to try out a few until you find the ones that work for both your baby and yourself. And don’t forget that when they’re sick, teething or if there’s daylight savings or another time change, it’s completely normal for their sleep to be disturbed. Thankfully, it’s usually only temporary!
What tricks and tips did you find worked for getting your baby to sleep? Tell us on Facebook.
This is a sponsored post for Emla. Emla is used for topical anesthesia of the skin prior to vaccination and blood sampling. Always read the label. Use only as directed.