Top Tips For Your Baby's sleep
With 20+ years experience as a Nanny and sleep consultant, here are my top tips to help your baby sleep soundly.
1) Introduce a bedtime routine with rituals. A consistent bedtime routine helps give your baby bedtime boundaries making them feel safe, secure and settled. Doing the same things in the same order every night helps them to relax as they learn to anticipate what is coming next. Here are by top tips for a calm and gentle bedtime routine to ensure a calm night follows:
- The last supper: This should be timed right - neither too early, nor too late before bed. You want your baby to have a nice, full tummy for bed, but not so full that they are uncomfortable.
- The big chill: Keep it chilled after supper as over stimulation and an excited baby can be harder to settle
- Bath Time: Babies don’t need a bath every day, but it's lovely to have one in the bedtime routine. It’s calming, relaxing, soothing and a great bonding experience. To make it even more of an experience you could listen to some gentle music, spray some lavender and dim the lights
Feed and cuddle: time the bath so that straight afterwards they stay upstairs, so as not to get them all over-excited again after bath. Keep it relaxing, warm, cosy and quiet.
2) Have a nap routine: A good nap routine will help prevent your baby becoming overtired making them hard to settle at bedtime, wake frequently during the night and rise with the sparrows. After 9 months try not to let them sleep past 3.30pm because this can affect their melatonin levels needed for a good nights sleep.
3) Learn and respond to their sleep cues: An over tired baby produces cortisol making them harder to settle. Learning your child’s sleep cues and responding to them at the first sign can help prevent this. Tired signs can be: rubbing eyes, pulling ears, yawning and going still and/or quiet.
4) Right Environment for sleep: The right environment can really help you baby to have a good night’s sleep:
- Dim lighting. If the room is too bright it can affect the production melatonin levels needed for sleep
- Ideal temperature: Babies prefer a cooler temperature between 16 and 20.
- White noise: This can help block out loud and sudden noises