Settling your baby can sometimes be hard work. When finally you get into a routine and some regular sleep, undoubtedly a new tooth will arrive or a cold strikes and you’re back to square one again.
An unsettled baby places unnecessary stress on new parents. They don’t use sleep deprivation as a form of torture for no reason!! So here are some tips to settle your baby to try
The obvious things to check for first are hunger, a wet nappy and the temperature of the baby and the baby’s room. If they don’t work, why don’t you give these ideas a go?
- Create Bedtime Habits
A bedtime routine signals to your baby that bedtime is coming soon and that it’s time to slow down for the day. Sleep experts say it should last for approximately 30 minutes and take place calmly in the bedroom or bathroom, avoiding areas associated with play. Try a warm bath, nappy change, milk and story time.
- Be Consistent
Once you have got into your 30 minute routine, be consistent keeping it the same each night. Start your routine at a similar time each night and when possible use the same techniques in the same locations.
Newborns feel more secure when swaddled, so give it a go. It’s thought that a swaddle feels like the baby is still in the womb making the baby more likely to relax. Use a muslin wrap or light blanket for swaddling depending on the season.
- Patting and Shushing
Try patting your baby gently and shushing them quietly when they are in the cot or bassinet. Retreat when they seem to settle and repeat if necessary. Leave longer gaps between each session until they (hopefully) sleep.
- White Noise
White noise such as the washing machine, driers and vacuum cleaners can mimic the swooshing sound inside the womb and help calm babies. White noise is also used to mask background sounds to promote healthy sleep later in life. There are many white noise apps available now which will do the trick (for the whole family!)
Learning to settle your baby will enable better rest for you and your partner. A good night’s sleep is vital to both your physical and emotional well-being.
Strategies to help settle your baby… PRICELESS!!