6 Helpful Baby Sleep Techniques
Sleep training for babies is as important for the baby as it is for the parents. If your baby wakes up constantly during the night, it will disturb your sleep pattern as well which makes it difficult for you to function properly during the day and can sometimes also lead to depression. However, with the help of a few tips and strategies, you can make it easier for your baby to sleep.
- Experiment with night time routines and rituals
While one night time technique may work for some parents, it may not be of much help to others. Try experimenting with a few routines until you find one that works for you and your baby. Sticking to a routine just because it works for someone else is not a good idea. Like adults, all babies are different and have different night time temperaments. Stay flexible in your approach and try out different methods before you find one that works best for you. Introduce your baby to bedtime rituals such as a warm bath, massage, or story readings. An enjoyable bedtime ritual helps by making it easier for the baby to sleep and for longer stretches of time.
- Try different night time associations
Just like night time routines, try different sleeping methods for your baby. You can rock your baby to sleep, nurse them to sleep, sing lullabies to them, use tape recordings, and/or switch duties with your partner. When a baby sleeps at night in a particular way, they will expect to sleep the same way when they wake up. Trying various sleep associations can help you in creating a healthy sleep attitude for your baby and better sleep for the parents.
- Daytime nap routines
Help your baby in setting up daytime nap routines. When you feel exhausted or tired, lie down with your baby and get them to sleep. These daytime naps will also allow you to rest with your baby while they nap. Studies also show that babies who nap during the day are more likely to sleep for longer periods of time during the night making it easier for parents to get a good night’s sleep with no disturbances.
- Sounds and music to help sleep
Sounds can help your baby to sleep at night. Monotonous sounds like that of a ceiling fan, vacuum cleaner, or air conditioner can lull your baby to sleep. You can even use tape recordings of sounds of waterfall, ocean or even womb sounds; these remind the baby of the sounds they heard while in the womb. A recording of your baby’s favorite lullaby played continuously can also be helpful.
- Fulfilled appetite
Babies have small stomachs which allow them small feedings every few hours throughout the day. Their digestive system is designed to allow them frequent feedings every three hours. Try feeding your baby a spoonful of baby cereal before putting them to sleep. This might help in getting your baby to sleep for an extra hour or two.
- Physical comfort
For a baby to sleep peacefully it is important that they are physically comfortable when you put them to bed. Clear your baby’s nose before bedtime to make clear breathing passage. Make sure the baby’s bedroom is clean and tidy without any dust particles or anything prone to cause allergies. Also try to remove any airborne irritants such as paint fumes, cigarette smoke, plants or baby powder dust. Put your baby in comfortable clothing so they are warm and cozy when they sleep. Make sure their dress isn’t too tight or too loose.
Uncomfortable clothing can disrupt their sleep. Be sure to change spoiled or wet diapers as they can be very uncomfortable and cause irritable rashes. If your baby is teething, consult a doctor for medication. Teething is a painful and discomforting process which can disturb your baby’s sleep making him irritable and grouchy.
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