HOW TO GET YOUR BABY TO SLEEP THROUGH THE NIGHT
There are many reasons why your baby may be waking up throughout the night. She may be teething, hungry, too hot or too cold or just wants to spend more time with her mom and dad. Some babies are born great sleepers while others need a little help learning how to become good sleepers. That’s where we come in. Enjoy this article, written by mothers, on ways to get your baby to sleep through the night.
Establish a Bedtime Routine
Babies like predictability and routine. The routine needs to be simple and the same every night so they’ll become accustomed to the cues and will start to understand when it is time to sleep. The sooner you institute a routine the better. Try to stick to the routine even when you’re not at home as this will help baby sleep when you’re on the go or on vacation. Establishing a bedtime ritual for your baby will make a huge difference in helping them get to sleep and stay asleep.
“Doing the same thing every night, leading up to bedtime helped Maya tremendously! It helped us too. As humans, we all respond well to routine.” – Heidi, mother of two
Sample Bedtime Routine:
6:00 PM – 7:00 PM: Play with baby, the goal is to get her tired out.
7:00 PM – 7:15 PM: Give baby a warm soothing bath.
7:15 PM – 7:45 PM: Change and feed baby.
7:45 PM – 8:15 PM: Read a bedtime story or sing a lullaby.
8:15PM: Put baby to sleep in crib.
Dream Feed (see more about that below) Do one last feeding right before you go to bed.
Create White Noise
Believe it or not, babies love noise. Babies are used to sleeping well with all the noise in the womb. White noise is one of the most effective ways to keep baby asleep and one that most parents don’t use. White noise also helps block out other noise in the house caused by siblings or unexpected visitors. There are many white noise options from machines that play continuous sounds to a variety of phone or tablet noise apps for you to download.
“I used to turn on the vacuum to help my daughter fall asleep. The minute we turned on the Dyson, she would immediately start soothing herself to bed. That vacuum saved my sanity!” – Stephanie, mother of three
Use a Humidifier at Night
With dry air comes congestion and irritation to a baby’s skin and lungs. When you moisturize the air, your baby will experience relief from congestion and many cold symptoms and will help with chapped lips and dry skin. Your baby will benefit with not feeling too dry or warm and babies tend to sleep better in a cooler environment. Crane’s cool mist humidifiers are safe to use for newborns and infants and the best part is that the Adorable Collection is designed to match your baby’s room décor.
One of the main reasons a baby wakes is due to hunger. A dream feed is where you feed your baby while they are sleeping and you do it right before you go to bed. If your baby goes down between 7 PM and 8 PM, you’ll typically do a dream feed at either 10 PM or 11 PM. The goal of the dream feed is to help eliminate the middle of the night feeding. To dream feed just pick baby up and keep the room dark during the entire feeding. The dream feed works best if baby stays asleep but that all depends on what works best for you and your baby.
“Dream feeding worked best for my sons when they were 6 months or younger. Any older than that and they were too aware and alert. All kids are different, I would definitely try it out!” Melissa, mother of two
Put Baby Down Drowsy, But Awake
This is one of the most important methods to ensure your baby sleeps throughout the night, but it can be the hardest. Your baby needs to learn the skills to go to sleep on their own. When you allow your baby to fall asleep in your arms and then bring them to the crib, they tend to wake up more throughout the night. Also, when your baby falls asleep being rocked or eating, they will expect that the next time they want to go to sleep. The best is to try to put your baby down drowsy but awake. You do not want them to go down too tired. This method will take time for you and baby but it is one of the best methods to ensure your baby sleeps through the night.
Remember that every baby is different. Stay flexible. What works for one may not work for another. No single approach will work for babies all the time. If a certain method is not working for your family, stop and try another one. Find what works best for you and your baby to get them to sleep through the night.
Feel free to post your own great bedtime tips in the comments section below!