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Infants can get stressed just like grown-ups. If your child resists sleep, take a minute to make sure her problem isn’t a sign of stress. She may be troubled by yelling or fighting, scary situations, including barking dogs, loud noises, an unfamiliar bedroom, or new or unfriendly people (a new sitter or teacher, or even a grandma who hasn’t visited in a while). During the first weeks of a baby's life, some parents choose to room-share. Room-sharing is when you place your baby's crib, portable crib, play yard, or bassinet in your own bedroom instead of in a separate nursery. This keeps baby nearby and helps with feeding, comforting, and monitoring at night. For most of human history, parents slept close to their babies for their safety and protection, as well as for parents’ own ease of breastfeeding and sleeping. The particular arrangements varied - some parents slept nestled with their babies on the same bed, mat, or rug; others placed their babies in a hammock or basket within arms’ reach; still others placed them in a “sidecar” arrangement next to the adult bed. But all of them slept within sensory range of their babies. Ideal wake times range depending on the age of your newborn and time of day. In a nutshell, the younger they are, the less time they’ll be able to stay comfortably awake (ie. 30-60 mins). And as they get older, awake time can stretch to as long as 90 minutes. If you need guidance on gentle sleep training then let a sleep consultant support you in unlocking your child's potential, with their gentle, empathetic approach to sleep.

Make Sure You’re Stocking Up On Good Sleep Now

Focus on figuring out how your newborn likes to sleep. As long as they are not able to flip over, swaddling is generally considered safe, although you should always check with your pediatrician to make sure they recommend it for your child. Help baby bond with a security object – choose a baby blanket or stuffed animal and keep it near you for a while, so it takes on your comforting smell. If you’re breastfeeding, you could even try expressing some breastmilk onto a small piece of muslin, then popping it in their cot. Babies have a strong sense of smell, so if they wake suddenly, your familiar smell may help them settle again. With older babies feeding to sleep can continue to be effective at getting your baby to fall asleep. However feeding to sleep quickly becomes a firm habit, as baby learns to fall asleep by feeding. Over time this means they will want to be fed back to sleep every time they wake in the night, which is on average 4-6 times for babies over 5 months. Sleep training involves parents trying to teach their baby to settle themselves at night. An example of this is known as “controlled crying”. “Controlled crying” involves leaving your baby in their bed for increasing periods of time until they stop crying and fall asleep. Newborns have little tummies which means they eat more often; and if they are going through a growth spurt, your newborn may feed even more often. Sleep consultants support hundreds of families every year, assisting with things such as ferber method using gentle, tailored methods.

When you find out you’re going to be a parent, one of the first things people might say to you is ‘Goodbye to your lie-ins’. And, we're sorry to say this, they’re probably right. Resist the urge to change your baby every time they wake up – they don't always need it, and you'll just jostle them awake. Instead, put your baby in a high-quality nighttime nappy at bedtime, and apply nappy-rash cream as a preventative measure. Hopefully baby will be drowsy and relaxed but awake when you put them down to sleep. Trouble is, babies are usually shattered by bedtime and often fall asleep feeding. To avoid this, try feeding slightly earlier and have a story last thing before putting your baby down. Newborns will sleep and wake sporadically throughout the day and night, waking for feeding primarily. But being too hot or cold, uncomfortable or in need of changing can also wake a baby from their sleep. Sleep deprivation clouds our judgment, depresses our mood, and can lead to bad decisions, car accidents, heart disease … even cancer. A sleep expert will be with you every step of the way, guiding you on how best to find a solution to your sleep concerns, whether its sleep training or one of an untold number of other things.

Have A Nap Schedule

According to safe sleep experts, the best sleeping position for your baby is on their back in the 'feet-to-foot' position. The feet-to-foot position is where your baby's feet are at the end of the Moses basket, crib, or cot. When putting your little one down to rest, always lay them down on their back. Never put your baby to sleep on their front or side. When your toddler seems to struggle to fall asleep for a nap, this is a clear sign they are not as tired for a nap as they used to be. As they grow, they are more able to stay awake longer and this period of staying awake for longer can happen pretty quick. A baby falling asleep in your arms can become a 'problem,' so to speak, if that's the only place they'll sleep for all sleep, and there are some babies who have a very hard time sleeping elsewhere for a variety of reasons. Think about it, while in your stomach, the baby’s “bed” was in constant movement, rocking him gently back to sleep. Food supply also never stopped. Quite different from a steady, roomy crib and no food for many hours. At the end of your baby’s bedtime routine, put your sleepy little one down while he's drowsy but still awake. That way he’ll get used to falling asleep on his own, not in your arms. A sleep consultant will take a holistic approach to create a sleeping system that you can manage and one which takes into account sleep regression as well as the needs of the baby and considerations of each family member.

It's a good idea to teach your baby that night-time is different from daytime from the start. During the day, open curtains, play games and don't worry too much about everyday noises when they sleep. Hunting for a fresh sheet after your baby soaks his nappy or spits up is miserable in the middle of the night, and turning on the lights can wake baby up more fully, meaning getting them back to sleep can take an eternity. Instead, double layer ahead of time. For months, you’ve likely woken up several times a night to feed your little one. Night weaning is making sure your baby is eating their meals during the day, so that they don’t have to wake up to eat in the middle of the night anymore. Night weaning is perfectly safe as long as your baby is healthy and at an appropriate weight. Talk to your pediatrician about when it’s time to night wean your baby. Your newborn baby will wake up regularly to be fed. It doesn't matter if it's day time or night time. This can be very hard to cope with. It will get easier. Try to sleep when your baby is asleep. All babies and children need to be supported to develop a good sleep routine and good sleeping habits. It is a process that will take time and can’t be achieved in a few days. This can be a struggle, especially when you are sleep deprived and feel constantly tired yourself. All babies are different and will start sleeping through at different times. There also needs to be a degree of flexibility around sleep routines. For 4 month sleep regression guidance it may be useful to enlist the services of a sleep consultant.

Don't Rush To Feed Your Baby At Night

Wind-up swings for winding down babies are a boon to parents who have neither the time, energy, or creativity to muster up rituals of their own. Tired parents will pay anything for a good night’s sleep. Once in awhile a moving plastic seat may be more sleep-inducing than a familiar pair of arms. Fresh air and light in the late afternoon helps regulate body clock. So a walk in the pram or some outdoor play in the afternoon is a really good idea. A simple firm, flat, waterproof mattress with no loose bedding is the best advice. Use firmly tucked in sheets and blankets, or a lightweight baby sleeping bag. Place your baby in the feet-to-foot position and avoid using quilts, pillows or duvets. Cot bumpers are also best avoided. Avoid filling your baby's cot with soft toys - a clear cot is the safest option. One can unearth more intel appertaining to Baby Sleep Specialists on this NHS article.

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