Top 7 Sleep Tips
I thought I would share my Top 7 Sleep Tips on how to help your baby become a great sleeper. If I had known these when my daughter was born I may not have spent our first 6 months rocking, patting, shhing our baby to sleep resulting in endless nights of no sleep and one very tired mummy & baby girl.
Tip 1. Babies need to learn to fall asleep on their own without any external props.
External props come in MANY forms, from dummies ,patting, rocking , music, cuddles to name a few. 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.
Tip 2. Consistency is key
CONSISTENCY is everything when teaching your baby to sleep well. 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.
Tip 3. Early bedtime!
This is vital to ensure that children do not become overtired. When a little one gets overtired it’s all about hormones and we get a rush of adrenaline which is clearly going to make it become more difficult to settle down and fall asleep.
When sleep does come, a child is then a lot more restless with more tossing and turning and more night time waking and also far more likely to wake early the next day
Tip 4. Routine
A bedtime routine is something you can start at a very early age and is there as a cue to the body and brain 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. You can include whatever you like in your routine but be very sure that it doesn’t stretch on too long and become ‘part of the day’ and that the steps are EXACTLY the same every night for the steps to be predicable.
Tip 5. Nap-time routines.
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 making their room dark, story & song.
Tip 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.
Sleep begets sleep, and makes for far happier babies!
Tip 7. – Keep your baby awake whilst feeding.
If you are feeding your baby in the night try really hard not to let him/her fall asleep at the breast or bottle, even with young babies. Keep feedings low key and quiet but awake and engaged.
Just implementing one of these tips could help improve your baby’s sleep. If you are struggling with bedtime, night wakings, early mornings and/or naps I’m here. A Sleep Consultant isn’t just about getting your child to sleep better, it’s my role to help and offer solutions when things arise with your child’s sleep. When you’re all ready feeling tired, appreciate that I will look after the sleep situation and give you the tools to teach your child to become a great independent sleeper. One less thing to worry about 🙂