Being a new parent is really tough, especially when your sweet baby is awake all night. As a baby sleep consultant, I know how challenging it can be to manage your own sleep while also ensuring your little one is getting the rest they need. But don’t worry, with a few simple adjustments to your routine, you can get your baby to sleep through the night and give both you and your baby the rest you need.
Imagine having your baby falling asleep much faster at bedtime and even begin sleeping through the night! It’s absolutely possible! I’m going to share with 5 tips that you can begin implementing tonight to help get your baby sleeping through the night.
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Tip 1: Establish a Consistent Bedtime Routine
Establish a consistent bedtime routine. Babies thrive on routine. And a consistent bedtime routine can help your little one feel calm and ready for sleep. A simple routine might include a bath, a diaper change, a bedtime feed and a bedtime story. Whatever you choose, make sure you stick to the same routine every night.
Tip 2: Create a Peaceful Sleep Environment
Create a peaceful sleep environment. Babies need a calm and quiet environment to sleep just like we do as adults. Make sure your baby’s sleep space is cool, dark, and quiet. I like to set the temperature somewhere between 68 – 72 degrees.
Use blackout window covers or blackout curtains to get it as dark as possible in your baby’s room. In a perfect world, I would like for it to be pitch black in your baby’s room. But at a bare minimum, we want it to be at least dark enough to where you can’t read a book in there.
A white noise machine can help to drown out environmental noises and make your baby’s room more conducive to sleep.
I really like the white noise on the Hatch.
We want to ensure your baby is as comfortable as possible when going down to sleep. So change them into their pajamas and then put them into their swaddle or sleep sack.
Tip3: Avoid Overstimulation Before Bedtime
Avoid overstimulating activities before bedtime. Babies can become overstimulated before bedtime, making it harder for them to fall asleep. Avoid activities that are too stimulating before bedtime, such as playing with bright toys or watching television.
In fact, try avoiding television all together throughout the day. The American Academy of Pediatrics doesn’t recommend any screen time until after the age of two. Instead, opt for quieter activities like reading a book or singing a lullaby.
Tip 4: Be Patient & Consistent
Be patient and consistent. Getting your baby sleeping through the night is not always easy. And it can take time. Be patient and consistent with your routine. Don’t be discouraged if your baby has a few rough nights. With time and patience, you will see progress.
Tip 5: Teach Your Baby To Self Soothe
As your baby grows, they will need to learn how to self-soothe and fall asleep on their own. If your baby is under 3 months old, try putting your baby to bed when they are drowsy but not fully asleep, so they can learn to soothe themselves to sleep. Over time, this will help them learn to sleep through the night without needing your help.
If your baby is over 3 months old, that drowsy but awake strategy just doesn’t work as well because they are much more aware of their surroundings. Instead, try putting your little one into their crib fully awake, rather then drowsy or already asleep. This will allow them to be fully aware of their surroundings when going down to sleep and develop the skills needed to learn how to self soothe.
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How to Get Your Baby Sleeping Through the Night
Yikes! Did what I just say make your heart skip a beat? Did I really just say that you’ll put your baby down into their crib wide awake? Yes, that’s exactly what I said. And that’s the key to get your baby sleeping through the night.
Teaching your child to fall asleep on their own is an important journey that requires your love and support. You know what it’s like to help your child learn a new skill. It’s like riding a bike. Falling asleep is not different.
Fast forward a few years to when you’ll be teaching your little one to ride their bike. You will be there every step of the way for them. You’ll be cheering them on and helping them up when they fall. And just like riding a bike, falling asleep on their own takes practice and patience.
Of course, there may be a few bumps in the road. And your baby might protest the change. But you don’t have to leave them alone to figure it out on their own.
Gentle Sleep Training
In fact, in my Coaching Program, I almost always recommend that parents stay in the room with their child when they’re teaching their child how to fall asleep independently. Think about it. Your baby has been so dependent on you in order to fall asleep. Completely removing you from their sleep situation would be very tough on them. And it would probably be even harder on you.
You can stay with them, sitting by their crib or bed. Be comforting by letting them hear your voice. Be supportive by letting them feel your touch so that they know that you’re still there and that everything is ok. If you have a younger baby who responds really well to being picked up, then by all means pick them up if they’re crying. With your support and some time, your baby will learn the skills they need to sleep soundly through the night.
And do you want to know the best part? Your baby is going to learn how to fall asleep independently very quickly! The families I work with usually see HUGE improvements within 3 – 4 nights!
When you follow the steps I’ve outlined above, you will find that within a few nights, your baby will be falling asleep quickly and easily at bedtime and at nap time. But I understand that embarking on a big journey like sleep training can feel overwhelming.
Help Getting Your Baby Sleeping Through the Night
If you need help creating the perfect sleep plan for your child, I’m here to help solve your child’s sleep struggles and support you. At Live Love Sleep, I work with families to establish healthy sleep skills for life. Just imagine doing a 20 – 30 minute bedtime routine with your child each night, putting them down into bed, giving them a kiss, walking away, and knowing that they will happily close their eyes and fall asleep all on their own without anymore crying. And you’ll have your baby sleeping through the night!
Click here to schedule your free Sleep Discovery Call with me today so that we can dive into your child’s sleep challenges and to see if I’m the right fit to help your family sleep well.