Newborn Sleep Routines
The first few weeks of your baby’s life can be some of the toughest for you. As your baby adjusts to being out of the womb, your life gets put on hold. Your baby doesn’t know day from night. He can’t sleep for more than a few hours without eating. You are up and down at all hours. Many parents suffer from sleep deprivation.
Some parents think they can prevent this by putting their baby on a sleep schedule. Other parents think their baby should eat and sleep on demand. There is no right or wrong way to do it. But there are steps you can take to set good sleep patterns for your baby. These will help her develop a routine. The routine will mean more stability and predictability for you.
Path to improved well being
Between websites, blogs, books, magazine articles, and other parents, you have endless sources of information on what’s best for your baby. Many times, these sources give different information. But here are some basic tips that most experts agree will help your newborn get the best sleep possible.
Teach your baby daytime from nighttime.
Your baby doesn’t know the difference between night and day. You have to help teach her. During the day, keep lights on. Open windows, and do things with more energy. At night, keep lights low. Do things more slowly and quietly. When your baby wakes up in the middle of the night to eat, don’t engage her. Avoid any type of stimulating talk or actions. Simply change her diaper, feed her, and put her back in her crib.
Recognize when your baby is tired.
Your baby will give you cues that he’s tired. Pay attention and catch these cues early:
- rubbing eyes
- looking away from you.
Don’t wait until your baby is overtired to put him in bed. He will have more trouble falling asleep. He probably won’t sleep as long.
Keep baby awake during feedings.
Many babies fall asleep while they’re eating. This is understandable. They are very comfortable, snugly wrapped in someone’s arms as they eat. But if you let your baby go to sleep, she won’t get a full feed. She will wake up sooner and want to eat again sooner. Tips to keep your baby awake while eating include:
- Rub her feet or hands.
- Wipe her forehead, neck, and face with a wet wipe.
- Strip her down to…