A new baby is a wondrous source of joy for new parents, except when it comes to sleep time and all you can do is listen to loud wails and screams or stare at the little sober eyes. Though most babies sleep for approximately two thirds of the day, it is usually in short bursts. Sleep is an important part of your newborns daily life and knowing the facts is something that every parent needs to be aware of. Below are a few simple tips that will get your baby to sleep faster and for longer.
Feed Them Before Bed Time
By having a full stomach before going to bed, you ensure that your baby won’t wake up in the middle of the night hungry and screaming for milk. This is a good strategy to keep the baby to sleep for longer and more peacefully. Though, you should not overfeed as this could lead to gas and discomfort.
Tire Them Out During The Day
Encouraging daily activity will stimulate the baby to stay awake and active during the day. You can make play a part of the child’s life by letting him play with siblings and other children. You can also find suitable and safe toys for the baby. This will help to make your baby tired and more sleepy at night thus will sleep faster and for longer. Car rides are another great way to expose your child to new things while also keeping them active. Although if you are using a top rated car seat chances are that they might just dose off during the ride. An active child is one that will definitely be more apt to sleep as the day winds down.
Create A Specific Routine
An infant’s psychology is just the same as that of an adult and establishing a specific routine will have them predict whatever they are supposed to do at a particular time. An example is, a warm bath, reading a story to the child or a soft massage before putting them to sleep will always make them understand that when any of the above is done, then it is time to sleep. This will make them sleep faster without much trouble and their sleep patterns regular. It is also very advisable to create a specific spot for the baby to sleep daily as it will help keep their sleeping pattern regular.
Good sleep can only be achieved in a comfortable environment. Having the baby’s bedding and clothes clean, soft and comfortable will definitely soothe the baby to sleep and have them sleep for longer. The clothes should also be chosen depending on the temperature at that particular time and area. When it is cold, dress your baby in warm clothes and when hot, use light clothing. The baby’s room should be kept quiet , though some prefer falling asleep to low-toned nature sounds or soft music. It is also advisable to have the room low-lit to avoid distractions as a result of light. Temperature should also be regulated for the baby to have longer, smoother and better sleep. Cool temperatures of between 65 degrees Celsius and 70 degrees Celsius is the optimal temperature for a baby to sleep. Swaddling them can help to keep them warm but care should be taken to prevent them from overheating.
Signs of Pain
Infants usually suffer from pain though they cannot talk about it. This is natural to all babies since some pains are associated with teething, fevers, gas or illnesses among other conditions. This may greatly affect the child’s sleeping patterns thus causing sleep deprivation. This should be addressed as soon as you discover it. Whenever your child has trouble sleeping because of pain, it is best to try your best to identify the pain and its cause and try to manage it where possible. If it can be treated using over-the-counter drugs, topical gels or massage, then do so but if it is a serious medical case, then you should seek help from a doctor.
Start Sleep Training
Most people prefer to start this when the child is 4 months old but it can as well work for a newborn since most of the baby’s senses are working normally. You can try putting your baby to bed when he is drowsy and not fast asleep as it will train him to soothe himself to sleep without any assistance. You should also try to wake your baby up before putting him to bed so as to allow him to soothe himself back to sleep. This comes in handy whenever the baby wakes up in the middle of the night and there is no one to make him sleep. You should also never run to pick your baby immediately he wakes up and starts crying. Allow him to soothe himself back to sleep. This will also teach him to be patient.
Avoid Eye Contact
Whenever you want your baby to sleep, you should avoid looking into his eyes. Eye contact has been proven to have a stimulating effect to the child’s body; it increases his heartbeat thus making him active and more awake thus preventing the baby from sleeping.
Use Extra Absorbent Diapers
In addition, using more absorbent night time diapers instead of the normal ones will help your baby to sleep longer without getting wet. Changing soiled diapers now and then during the night disrupts the baby’s normal sleeping pattern.
These are just some of the ways that you can help your child sleep better at night and get on a normal routine. This is often one of the top issues for new parents that can really disrupt their lives. The lack of sleep can have a dramatic impact, not only on your child, but you as well.