In the beginning, the day and night rhythm is often switched around with your baby – This is totally normal! It’s safe to say that your baby will not sleep through the night in the first few months. In fact, some babies only sleep well after a year, and sleep schedules will differ from child to child. However, in the long run it’s important that your child clearly knows that night time is sleep time. Here are 10 ways you can help to ensure that happen
Keep the room light during nap time
When your little one is taking naps during the day, keep the curtains drawn so he or she knows that it’s still day time. You can even keep some background noise like an open window to help make this clear.
In the evening, make sure it’s really dark
Dark = night time. If you make this known to your little one, they will associate darkness with a good night’s sleep. Use blackout curtains and make sure they are fully closed. Try to avoid too much background noise other than your sound machine if you have one!
Avoid overstimulation during the day
A lot of people think that if a baby has a busy day, they will naturally sleep like a rock. However, often times the opposite is true. If babies are overstimulated throughout the day, there is less chance of a good night’s sleep. As such, ensure your baby has enough downtime throughout the day so they can have sounder sleep at night.
Over-fatigue = poor sleep
Along with point three, if you find that your baby is tired throughout the day – rubbing the eyes, crying a lot, it is time to put him or her in the bed. For better nap times in the daytime, you can let your baby sleep in a baby sleeping bag or a sleep suit. These keep your baby nice and warm and can help them to sleep better.
Do not take your baby out of bed with every sound
As a new mum, it’s easy to get alerted by every sound or cry, and often times we can be tempted to pull the baby out of the crib whenever we hear a peep. Some babies just sleep lightly, and if we pull them out of the crib unnecessarily or too often, it can be easy to overstimulate the baby which can result in a difficult night to come
Bathe your baby in the evening
Everyone likes a nice, relaxing bath at the end of the day – even your baby! We recommend using Naif Milky Bath Oil for a little extra TLC – it’s great for soothing and nourishing the skin, and is also great for treating eczema.
Set a ritual in the evening
Some like to do bath time before bed. Others a baby massage, and some simply a bedtime story! Whatever your ritual is, be sure you stick to it. This simple little trick can also indicate to the baby that it’s time for bed and help to prepare them for a good night’s sleep.
Rest in advance
About a half an hour before bedtime, allow your baby to rest. This should be quiet time, so avoid sounds from the TV or tablets in the house.
Skipped naptime? Put your baby to bed extra early
It happens – sometimes nap times don’t always go as scheduled. If this is the case for you – no biggie. Just be sure to put your baby in bed extra early that night. You will see that the night will be much quieter.
As we said in point 5, it is wise to not pull your baby out of the crib with every sound, and to teach them to fall back asleep on their own. The French have a nice strategy for this: “La pause”. If the baby is crying, they first wait two minutes before they go to their child. Instead of taking your child out of bed immediately, see what is wrong first: do they need a clean diaper? Has the pacifier failed? Lost teddy or blanket? Stay calm, and walk out of the room again. If the baby continues to cry, something else is going on, and it’s time to pick up your child.
What are your best tips for better sleep? Let us know in the comments below!