Baby Sleep-What to Expect When Your Newborn Arrives
Welcome To The World Of Baby Sleep!
If you are new to parenting you will find that getting your baby to sleep can be a challenge, but thankfully there are several techniques you can try.
Every baby has a different personality and baby sleep requirements. Some babies are great sleepers and stay that way throughout infancy and others end up staying awake more.
How Long Should My Newborn Baby Sleep?
You can expect your baby to sleep anywhere from 10 to 18 hours per day during their first few months of their lives. Your baby will need to eat a lot during their first months of their life.
Babies also do not differentiate between night and day during the first 6 to 8 weeks of their life, and their “awake time” may end up being throughout the entire evening.
Breastfed babies need to be fed at least every 2 hours, while bottle fed babies can be fed slightly less often.
So, you can expect to get a lot less sleep during your baby’s first few months. but there are techniques you can start implementing start at about 8 weeks at the earliest.
Helpful Baby Sleep Tips
One of the most helpful ways to get your baby to sleep is to develop a rhythm and a routine which we will discuss in this guide.
You should also be aware of the basics of toddler and baby health so that you know when there are issues with your child’s health instead of standard problems.
Does Sleep Training Work?
There are also several sleep training methods that can be very helpful for getting your baby to sleep at the times you prefer.
These methods have been designed by leading baby sleep experts and.
There are many different approaches to sleep training, and there is no such thing as a “right” approach. Each approach has been proven to work in different circumstances.
The approach that you decide to use for sleep training, if any, depends on your comfort with that particular approach and the advice of your pediatrician.
Use Common Sense
Be forewarned that none of our advice constitutes medical advice and that you should always speak with a pediatrician before implementing any of the advice in this report.
There may be unique considerations for your baby such as medical conditions that require attention during the evening, and other unique circumstances that may need to be discussed with your pediatrician.
You may also need to be aware of symptoms or other health issues with your baby, and as a result of these factors there is no guide that can be fully comprehensive on baby sleep.
However, the methods described in this guide have been developed by leading baby sleep experts and there is detailed information on different techniques and tricks you can try to help your baby get to sleep.
You will find that these methods can be very effective, and you should only try the routines and methods that you feel your baby would respond best to and that you feel comfortable with as a parent.
If you are new to parenting everything will be a unique experience, and you will have to learn as you go, but we hope that this guide will prove to be a valuable tool as you learn effective ways to help your baby get a good night’s sleep and stay healthy.
Sleeping tips for babies from birth to 3 months
From birth to 3 months of age your baby will be sleeping a lot, and it is never too soon to start establishing the important routines and sleeping patterns that will become an important part of you and your baby’s life.
During the first few weeks of your baby’s life you can expect her to sleep up to 17 hours per day, but she will only stay asleep for a few hours at a time.
As a new parent you can expect to have major changes in your sleeping schedule, as you will need to wake often throughout the night for feeding, comforting, and diaper changes.
But soon you’ll adjust and you’ll be able to handle the regular nighttime wakeups that may become common.
When you can expect your baby to sleep longer?
At around the age of 6 to 8 weeks your baby will start to sleep for longer periods of time in the evening, but she will wake up regularly to feed in the evenings.
Her sleep cycle will also change from having longer REM sleep cycles to longer periods of deep sleep instead of REM sleep.
Your baby may start sleeping for long periods of 8 to 12 hours at a very young age of 6 weeks, but this is not common.
Most babies will need to be at least 5 or 6 months old before they are able to sleep for this long.
Why newborn Baby sleep in short intervals
Newborn babies have a shorter sleep cycle than adults, so they spend much more of their sleep cycle in REM sleep.
REM sleep is thought to be necessary to the rapid development that babies have from the time of birth, and this type of sleep also happens to be much more easily disrupted.
As a result your baby will wake up regularly during the first 6-8 weeks, but the awakenings will gradually start to slow down.
You should start researching sleep training methods for your baby, but you will not want to start any type of sleep training until she is at least three months old unless your pediatrician recommends otherwise.
Help your baby sleep without day/night confusion
Day/night confusion is going to be a problem for your baby for a while, as she will not be able to distinguish daytime from nighttime for up to 6 weeks.
You can help her with this transition by ensuring that she gets more activity during daylight hours.
In general keep the days upbeat and full of activities and once the sun goes down minimize activity and focus more on relaxing, winding down and sleeping.
You can also start establishing nighttime routines as early as 6 weeks.
Use white noise and swaddle your baby to sleep
Baby White noise has shown to be very important for newborn babies, and helps to mimic the sounds in the womb.
You can use a noise machine or a CD or a fan to mimic the whooshing and other loud noises that your baby heard in the womb.
Swaddling also mimics the enclosed and comforting feeling of the womb, and you should learn a good swaddling technique which will help your baby fall asleep faster and for longer periods.
Setting up a baby sleep bedtime routine
Planning out a bedtime routine for your baby is one of the most important things for getting him to sleep on time on a regular basis, and you should come up with your own routine that suits him.
You might think it’s too soon to start a bedtime routine but the opposite is true; it’s never really too soon to start a routine, and you can start planning out a bedtime schedule at the age of 6 to 8 weeks.
Babies can greatly benefit from a routine because they need to wind down from the day just like adults and it will help them with their transition into childhood.
Decide on a bonding activity
Your baby will have to deal with being separated from you when it’s bedtime, which is a difficult thing for both you and him to deal with.
To make it easier you should set up 30 minutes of bonding time during the evening as a part of your routine.
The bonding time can involve playing a game, reading a nighttime story, or if he still has energy you can play a more active game that involves dancing or using a baby bouncer.
If you decide on a more rowdy activity you should follow it up with a calming activity like a bath.
Night time baths are a good choice for a baby sleep routine
A nighttime bath is a good choice for a routine because it will help to calm your baby down and establishes a more regular ritual.
Warm water is also shown to make both adults and babies more tired after a bath, and it’s another great bonding activity that will decrease separation anxiety when it’s time for him to sleep.
Some babies don’t enjoy baths as much, and if this is the case you can choose to leave bathing out of the ritual.
Babies only really need a bath every other day or a few times per week.
Singing a song or reading is a good bonding activity
Your baby may really enjoy it when you a sing a song to him at bedtime or a lullaby, or he may respond better to book reading.
It’s your choice as to what you think is a good bedtime bonding activity based on your baby’s responsiveness to reading or other activities.
Reading a book will help your baby build up his vocabulary and studies have shown that it is very helpful for building language skills and intelligence, so it’ never a bad idea to read to your baby every evening.
Play relaxing music at baby bedtime
Babies enjoy rhythmic sounds and it can be very helpful for getting them to sleep, so consider playing classical music or CDs with soothing white noise.
There are a number of CDs and MP3s of songs that are specifically composed to help babies sleep.
Sound machines that are designed to produce soothing white noise can also be a great way to help your baby get to sleep and can cut off external noise that may be bothering them as they try to sleep.