Parents all over the world have experienced the agony of having to get up in the wee hours of the morning to respond to their baby who has suddenly decided to wake up. They know the feeling of waking up still sleepy and groggy to soothe their crying baby back to sleep. Not only is it tiring, it can lead to sleep deprivation and fatigue throughout the day.
According to experts, newborn babies normally have a difficult time telling the difference between daytime and nighttime. Thus, they sleep for short periods of time and then wake up. This pattern of sleeping can be very frustrating for the parents or guardians. It goes on for the first three months of their lives.
However, there are some activities which you can perform to help your baby sleep throughout the night. This ensures that they get accustomed to normal sleeping patterns and also gives you some much needed shut-eye as the parent. Read on to learn about them.
Swaddle Your Baby
In the first five months of their lives, babies have a startle reflex. This is where they keep feeling as though they are falling. Due to this reflex, they keep jerking their bodies. If they do this as they sleep, they can actually wake themselves during the night. To prevent this, swaddle your baby snug with a soft blanket. This keeps them from jerking their bodies and waking themselves.
As a result, the baby will enjoy better quality sleep for longer periods of time. Keep swaddling your baby until they display effective control over their arms and are able to roll over on their own. At this stage of development, swaddle the baby’s torso and leave their arms out. This will help them to sleep for longer and provide you with some peace and quiet.
Put Your Baby To Sleep
Breastfeeding moms will find this tip hard to follow. They enjoy watching their little one fall asleep while feeding and hold them for some time before taking them to bed. However, if you want to enjoy quality sleep too, ensure that the baby is put to sleep as soon as they seem drowsy. This is so as to teach the baby to drift off on their own.
Doing this regularly teaches the baby how to soothe themselves to sleep. Keep an eye out for when they are calming down to sleep as you soothe them on the swing for your baby. At this point, place them in their nursery and let them drift off to sleep on their own.
Dream feed Your Baby
Dream feeding is the practice of feeding your baby and putting them to sleep right before you go to bed. This prevents the baby from waking up right after you fall asleep. One of the most frustrating feelings is hearing your baby crying because they are up right after you have finally drifted off to sleep yourself. Dream feeding can prevent this from happening. Engage in dream feeding from birth uintl the baby is four months old. It helps you and the baby sleep for longer at night.
Utilize The Lights In Your House Strategically
Exposure to light activates the body of your baby to wake up while darkness soothes them to go back to sleep. The darkness triggers their brain to produce a hormone known as melatonin. It induces sleep. Thus, you can ensure that your baby experiences enough light during the day and sufficient darkness at night. This will help them to set their internal clock and prevent your baby from fighting sleep.
You can let enough sunlight flow into their bedroom during the day. If they nap, let it be in a well-lit room. On the other hand, when night-time comes along, make sure that the lights are dimmed for two hours before the baby’s official bedtime. This will cause them to fall asleep gradually.
Newborns are well known for sleeping for short periods of time before startling themselves awake and crying in the middle of the night. This can drive a parent crazy and lead to very little sleep for them. Thankfully, the tips indicated above can help your baby sleep faster and for longer periods of time. As a result, you can rest easier and get enough shut-eye as well.