Developing a settling technique for babies

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Sometimes life with a small baby is less, well, idyllic than imagined. Before my first baby was born, there was a real part of me that imagined (yes, truly!) that most of the time we spent together would involve gazing at each other peacefully, and that whenever I put him down, he would just lie there happily. But actually, he just cried so much more than I thought he would, and I had very little idea how to manage our time together.

We’ve teamed up with Children’s Panadol to provide you with lots of quick and helpful information covering many aspects of children’s health and development. We hope you’ll find them a great resource as you take care of your family every day.

Developing a settling technique

All babies cry, and this is normal. Newborn babies cry on average for a few hours each day. Crying is a way for babies to communicate their needs. At the beginning, it’s quite normal to have at least one or two unsettled periods a day (where there’s a lot of crying), and at least one unsettled day per week. Responding to your baby’s cries promptly in the early weeks helps them to feel safe and secure.

It is important at this stage to develop a settling technique your baby becomes familiar with, which reassures and calms them. Use the same technique wherever you are, whenever your baby needs to go to sleep. This relaxes them and prepares them for bed, just like music, a cup of tea, or a good book may work for adults.

The purpose of developing settling techniques is not to put your baby to sleep, but to prepare your baby for sleep – so they can learn to go to sleep by themselves as they get older.

This is an excerpt from The First Five Years, which is a handy and easy to navigate book, specifically developed to help parents. It contains a comprehensive collection of practical parenting information and useful tips for your child’s first five years. If you’ve ever wanted a quick guide to refer to in the middle of the night, or to help you decide when it’s time to see a doctor, this is a resource which will help you on your way. You can view it online or download it for free at The First Five Years.

(This is a sponsored post for Children’s Panadol)

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