7 simple sleep tips for your baby

7 simple sleep tips for your baby

Sleep expert Karen Bramall tells us 7 little tips to get those babies sleeping through the night

535

It doesn’t take long for those dreaded little words ‘how is your baby sleeping?’ to come up in any conversation. Some parents dodge the question by saying everything is fine and some dive into a long story of their child’s sleep habits and their ultimate frustration.

For some families the nights of disrupted sleep can go on for months on end, even years, and it really needn’t be that way. Every child is different, but assuming that your baby is healthy, you can expect 12 hours of solid night time sleep between the ages of 3 and 6 months. If your child is 6 months of age or older and still not sleeping through the night, there are some simple steps you can take to quickly improve the length of your child’s sleep.

Here are 7 helpful tips to getting your baby to sleep well.

  1. Babies need to learn to fall asleep on their own without any external props. Props come in many forms, from feeding to dummies, to patting, rocking , music, cuddles and many more. If your baby is reliant on one or more to fall asleep then they will need it each and every time they wake in the night (which we all do at least several times a night briefly)

  2. Be consistent. Whatever is happening at one sleep situation needs to be happening at all sleep situations to send a clear message about what is expected, and that includes every time your baby or toddler wakes in the night.

  3. Early bedtime. This is vital to ensure that children do not become overtired. When a person is overtired, it becomes more difficult to settle down and fall asleep. When sleep does come, a person is a lot more restless with more tossing and turning and more night-time waking. Try to pick a bedtime somewhere between 6 and 8pm based on the last nap of the day and your baby’s age. Bedtimes do not have to be set in stone, you can always move bedtime a bit earlier if your child seems tired or cranky – just try not to make it later.

  4. A bedtime routine is something you can start at a very early age and is an excellent cue to the body and mind that it is time to settle down and get ready for sleep. Routines should last from 20 – 30 minutes and at least some of it should take place in the child’s room. Your routine might include a bath, pyjamas, feed and maybe a song or book.

  5. A short nap routine will help cue your baby’s body and brain that it is time for a nap. It need only take 5 minutes or so and might involve pulling the curtains in baby’s room together or saying goodnight to some toys in the room, then a short cuddle and a song.

  6. Exhausting your child will not make them sleep any better! Skipping naps or late bedtime will affect the next 24 hour cycle. Do not let anyone tell you that naps are not important, or that skipping them will help your baby sleep longer at night.

  7. Keep your baby awake whilst feeding If you are feeding your infant in the night try not to let him/her fall asleep at the breast or bottle. Keep feedings low key and quiet.

The latest research shows that 84% of children who are experiencing sleep problems will continue to have them for up to 5 years. This is a very long time for a family to function on a reduction of sleep and a long time to fight bedtime battles. It is never too late to start changing your child’s sleep situation. It can be hard but there is definitely light at the end of the tunnel and in the long run making changes will make everyone feel better, well rested and, a whole lot happier.

Implementing any kind of change can be hard work so if you would like some support on your journey to great sleep then there is help available. For more information from Infant and Child Sleep Consultant Karen Bramall from Baby Sleep The Night please go to www.babysleepthenight.com

 

 

RELATED ARTICLES

Related Articles

Weaning your baby: The best first foods
Baby
Weaning your baby: The best first foods
Weaning your baby: The best first foods If you're considering which first foods...
What to expect on the postnatal hospital ward
Labour and Birth
What to expect on the postnatal hospital ward
What to expect on the postnatal hospital ward Being on a postnatal ward can...
Four approaches to baby sleep training
Baby
Four approaches to baby sleep training
Four approaches to baby sleep training Can you train your baby to sleep in ten...
Appear on an exciting new TV series about the science of babies!
Pregnancy
Appear on an exciting new TV series about the science of babies!
Appear on an exciting new TV series about the science of babies! Are you...

email block

are-there-homeopathic-remedies-to-help-you-stop-smokingFertility & Health

Are there homeopathic remedies to help you stop smoking?

Homeopathic remedies can help you or your partner stop smoking to improve pregnancy health.
how-to-have-a-hassle-free-airport-experienceTravel

How to have a hassle-free airport experience

Going on holiday but dreading getting there, here is how you can start your journey hassle-free.
can-exercise-prevent-pre-eclampsiaEating & Exercise

Can exercise prevent pre-eclampsia?

Pre-eclampsia can occur due to higher blood pressure with pregnancy, being overweight, or having diabetes, suitable exercises will help improve...
win-a-big-wild-sleepout-kitWin

Win a Big Wild Sleepout kit worth £600

RSPB will once again be encouraging families across the UK to spend a night outdoors as part of its Big...
take-the-plunge-to-win-one-of-10-brand-new-splash-about-leak-proof-swim-nappiesWin

Take the plunge to win one of 10 brand new Splash About leak-proof swim nappies!

Over 150,000 UK babies swim each week wearing a Splash About Happy Nappy.
win-a-month-s-supply-of-kiddylicious-snacksWin

Win a month’s supply of Kiddylicious snacks!

We’re giving away a month’s supply of Kiddylicious snacks to three lucky winners.