SLEEP, LITTLE ONE, SLEEP! NOW, PLEASE! ADVICE AND SUGGESTIONS FOR HELPING BABY FALL ASLEEP
Surely you’ve seen the onesie for babies with the words: "If I don't sleep, nobody around here sleeps" or "From now on I decide when and for how long you get to sleep". So true. In this article, we have some tips for getting your little beastie to fall asleep in the best way and to have a restful sleep.
In the first few weeks, babies’ sleep patterns are very irregular. Around three or four months they begin to get used to the rhythm of waking and sleeping. To help your little one, you should stick to a fixed schedule. For example, chimes that indicate with a melody that it’s time to sleep are useful. Also reading a bedtime story or singing a lullaby and cuddling a little helps the child to create a routine.
Many babies also have a favourite stuffed toy or blanket with which they sleep especially willingly. If nonetheless the child still has trouble falling asleep, it may be because you missed the right time to take him to bed. Watch out for early signs of fatigue, such as a regular breathing, reduced need for movement and a serious look, and take your baby straight to bed when you see these signals. If he is disturbed in the tired phase and is unable to fall asleep, screams and protests are guaranteed.
Best cool and uncluttered: the ideal environment for your baby
In the first year, babies sleep better in their bed in the parents' room. They’re fine there. The sound of your breathing has a tranquillizing effect on the baby. And if you breastfeed, it’s practical to have the baby nearby. Babies prefer cool temperatures: a diaper, a onesie and a sleeping bag is more than enough. The room temperature should be around 16-18 degrees C. At first, your baby needs neither blanket or pillow. He sleeps best in the sleep sack on his back. And more safely.
Don't overdo the afternoon nap
Parents are happy when their baby sleeps. Oh, a little break! Clean the house in a hurry or read a magazine on the sofa. Infants need on average about 16 hours of sleep. At three months, sleeping hours are reduced to 15. At nine months to 14 hours. The best thing is not to let your baby sleep too long during the day. Otherwise it may happen that he’s wide awake and ready to go at night.
Private corner or family bed? The choice is yours
It may be that your baby does not want to fall asleep without mom or dad. Don't worry about that. Life as a three-some is something new and of course at first you don’t want to leave your treasure unsupervised for too long. If you want to train your baby to sleep alone, you can proceed as follows: after bringing him to bed, sit in a chair right next to him and sneak away once he’s asleep. Night after night, move the chair farther and farther away, until your baby is used to staying in bed without mom and dad.
But you can also choose to keep your child in your room and later when he's older, transfer him to a larger family bed. A few parents are enthusiasts. You decide and try whichever method makes your baby feels best (and your partner, of course!).
Evening meal for better sleep
At the age of about six months you can start replacing the evening bottle with some solid food. A blend of cereal, milk and some fruit puree. Being very filling, it’s possible that your baby won’t wake up as often at night or at least not due to hunger.