Mothers all over the world are always looking for solutions to help their babies sleep well throughout the night. Sleep behavior is learned. Therefore, sleep-related problems do not just go away or get outgrown by the child. Contrary to this, sleep problems experienced by your child in infancy tend to continue into both toddlerhood and childhood.
For you to improve naps for your child, and eliminate sleeping habits which are unnecessary, you need to put in effort in teaching your child the right sleeping habits and helping them in learning the sleeping pattern. Here are five tips on how you can get started.
- Ensure that your child is not hungry
When babies are developmentally ready to feed to get nutrients that their bodies need during the day, they tend to sleep well throughout the night. Therefore, you should ensure that you feed your child adequate breast milk or milk formula. This is to provide that when your child reaches developmental milestones, they can comfortably sleep throughout the night without waking up hungry a few hours in. You should do your research on this and if unsure, consult your pediatrician on how much you should feed your child during the night, and how often you should do this.
- Establish a good sleep environment for your child
Your baby’s room should be ideal to ensure that your child is getting a good night’s sleep. Things such as darkening the room’s wall shades, and switching off the light when your child is sleeping will help him fall asleep more easily. Comfortable jammies for your baby and sheets such as eco cot sheets ensure that your baby’s sleep environment is just right for them. You could also use a white noise machine or a fan to block out any outside noise that may make it hard for your child to fall asleep. You should be keen to ensure that the environment is also safe for your child.
- Laying your child down when they are drowsy but still awake
Newborns are not born with the skills to soothe themselves. It is thus perfectly okay to rock, nurse or even use a pacifier to help the baby sleep. You should try to place your baby down in a calm manner while they are awake to see how that works out. Be patient as you try this, because the more the baby learns this, the better they will become at sleeping.
As your child grows a bit older to a few months old, you can put them in their crib when they are a bit drowsy and not completely asleep, or very sleepy. This way, they’ll be aware that they are being placed on their bed so that they can sleep independently. By giving your baby the chance to self-settle and sleep on their own, you encourage your child to sleep independently.
- Encourage good sleeping habits
Learning how to sleep is a behavioral adjustment for your child. By eliminating props such as pacifiers, nursing, rocking, and bouncing, which your child relies on to sleep, you give your child the opportunity to learn how to fall asleep on their own. In this way, you’ll have a well-rested baby: well-rested baby is a happy baby.
- Creating a relaxing bedtime routine
A consistent and comforting bedtime routine is a great way to finish up the day and to let your baby know that sleep is coming. The routine should be the same each night and should last for about 30 minutes. The bedtime routine should not be elaborate but straightforward because the simpler the routine, the better. Depending on your baby’s age, you can include activities such as; a diaper change, a wash-up, putting on pajamas, going to potty, saying goodbye to everyone and reading a bedtime story for your child.
Adequate sleep for your child ensures that they are healthy and that their development is good. Tips such as ensuring that your baby sleeps in a cot with warm blankets, ensuring that your baby is well fed and ensuring that they have a consistent sleeping routine will go a long way in ensuring that your baby sleeps well and that they don’t have a hard time reaching developmental milestones.