Like adults, babies need a routine to help them unwind from the day. It would be unreasonable for us to expect them to simply fall asleep after hours of intense play. They need special cues so their bodies learn that sleep time is coming.
Starting a bedtime routine is a great way to get your baby in the mood for sleep. You can avoid spending hours rocking or cuddling your child until he or she is ready to fall asleep. Here are some tips that might help.
1. Start the routine early
You can start a bedtime routine as early as six or eight weeks. You want the patter to be ingrained so it’s the only thing baby knows. After several months, you’ll be able to make some slight changes (like earlier to bed so you can rise early and go somewhere the next day) without disrupting the schedule.
2. Give lots of attention
For some kids, bedtime is scary because it means separation from mom and dad. Make sure to spend at least thirty minutes giving cuddles and offering one-on-one attention so baby has nothing to fear.
3. Complete the bedtime routine in baby’s room
Ideally you want baby to fall asleep exactly where he wakes up so he isn’t afraid of the transition. Perform the bedtime routine in baby’s room and move him to the crib while he’s drowsy but still awake.
3. Have some active play before the routine starts
If you start the routine at 7:30, feel free to get the kids good and tired at 6:00. This will help them burn off any remaining energy for the day. Naturally, it’s easy to go to sleep when one is tired.
4. Give a warm soak
A bath is a soothing experience for everyone, babies included. For many, the warm water calms them down and makes sleep easier to come. For some, however, bath times are exciting. If your child likes to splash and play, leave bath times for the morning.
5. Get ready for bed the same way
Line up your bedtime-readying activities each night in the same order so it’s consistent. Wash hands and face, brush teeth and gums, and get into pajamas. This will get your baby mentally ready for calm down time.
6. Play a quiet game
To transition from active play, play something passive. You can play anything as long as it’s relaxed. This might be a puzzle book or toy without a lot of stimulation.
7. Read a story book
One of the best ways to end your routine is with a story book. This is an extremely passive activity and mom or dad’s talking will lull baby to sleep.
Keep in mind that you don’t need an overly complicated routine. Choose a few elements that work for your family and stay consistent.)
Written by Christine Barlow, Inventor of 5 Phases Eco-Friendly Baby Bottle System
Mom Christine Barlow is the inventor of 5 Phases eco-friendly and non-toxic baby bottles, the safest and healthiest way to bottle feed your baby. Her inspiration in creating an alternative to traditional feeding bottles came after the birth of her 1lb 7oz micro-preemie baby. Having a compromised child, she became aware how environmental factors were affecting our children. With all the concerns of plastics and infants being the most vulnerable, she felt there was a need for more options for parents who wanted to use glass. She knew she had to act – and the 5 Phases Hybrid Glass Baby Bottles were born.
5 Phases is dedicated to helping families achieve a healthier and organic lifestyle. Starting with baby, they develop products keeping both the environment and health of your family in mind. And when it comes to your baby nothing else will do – Christine knows, she’s a mom too!
For more information on 5 Phases, visit www.5phases.com!
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