As early as possible, you should establish a ‘baby sleep routine’. This means that you are getting your baby on a sleep schedule. By doing so, you are helping them have a healthy sleep not just when they are still infants but also in the years to come.
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How Early Should You Establish A Baby Sleep Routine?
During the first few weeks, it can be hard to establish a sleep schedule for your baby. However. after a couple of months, their internal clock will be a bit more predictable. As soon as this happens, you can already create a schedule.
When your baby turns 3 months old, you will notice that their wake-up, nap, and bedtime will fall on the same schedule every day. You must be observant so you would know what and when to act.
Remember though that a baby’s sleep routine should be taught when they are already 4 – 6 months old. You might want to check this video to learn more.
The Best Time for Babies to Sleep
There’s no standard answer for this as our babies are different from each other. They might be sleeping at the same time at night, but others could be early risers.
How Many Hours Should Your Baby Sleep?
Your newborn could sleep between 14 – 17 hours within a 24-hour period. They might sleep for two to three hours before waking up again. If your baby is sleeping for more than four hours, we recommend that you check with your baby’s pediatrician if this is normal for them.
Starting A Baby Sleep Routine
If you want to train your baby to have a regular sleeping schedule, you must remember the following.
Apart from starting at 4 months and carefully observing your baby’s routine, you should be flexible. What do we mean by this? This means you should stick to their natural rhythms. You must also be on the lookout for their sleep cues. This includes yawning, rubbing of the eyes, and even crankiness.
We understand that you might have set up a beautiful room for your baby. But if you want to train them to have a good sleep schedule, we recommend letting them stay with you in your room. Have a crib or a multi-functioning bassinet so that they could stay on their own. Plus, that’s safer than letting them sleep beside you. Being in one room means it’s easier to check your baby and to observe their sleep-wake patterns.
When your baby reaches 3 months old, they start to learn how to self-soothe. Having said that, we discourage that you pick them up when they start to make noise. Wait for a couple of minutes and see if they can already go back to sleep.
A pre-sleeping routine could also be established. You can start feeding them, giving a nice warm bath, some massages, cuddles, and even sing a lullaby.
Speaking of lullaby, you might want to try the Bedtime Mozart for babies.
For years, experts believe that classical music can stimulate one’s brain. And in fact, they encourage expecting mothers to listen to the genre while they are still pregnant. With this musical album, parents shared that their babies sleep like an angel. Plus, it’s beneficial for them as well as it could help them focus on other tasks.
A quick note. Do not get frustrated if you can’t get your baby to follow the schedule right away. More often than not, you need to adjust your ways. And yes, trial and error is a must.
Meanwhile, if you want to try a night light to help you create a sleep routine for your baby, here’s a product that has become a favorite of many.
We’re not surprised that a lot of parents are buying their babies their own sound machine and night light. And if you are looking for one, then Hatch has the best product for you. They have an entire library of sounds that can make your baby sleep. Plus, you can set programs that could help your baby transition from daytime to nap time to bedtime.
And while we encourage you to keep an eye on your baby, there might be times where you need to get something from the other room. Don’t worry as this product has a two-way audio monitor.
Getting Your Baby Used to Night And Day
It’s always a great idea to teach your baby that daytime is different from night-time. To teach them such, open your curtains in the morning, play games, and allow everyday noises when they take a nap.
Now, when it reaches night-time, ensure that the lights are low and there is minimal noise. Put them down once they are fed, and do not change their diapers unless there is a need. And lastly, do not play with them as this can interrupt their sleep.
Don’t Forget to Take Care of Yourself
It’s not going to be easy to have the perfect sleep routine right away. And sometimes, it makes you question your ability as a parent. However, you need to make sure that you are taking care of yourself as well. It’s normal to feel stressed, anxious, or even angry. But that doesn’t mean you should let these emotions consume you.
If possible, squeeze in some time to read a book. Or perhaps, ask someone to look after your baby while you walk around the block. Another way to take care of yourself is to meditate. This shouldn’t eat up a lot of your time. There are meditations which you can do for only five minutes. Do this while your baby is having a nap.
Creating the best ‘baby sleep routine’ is not an overnight success. It could take days or even weeks. And that is why you have to be patient. Just think of the benefits it could do for your baby. And while it can get frustrating at times, don’t forget to breathe and make time for yourself. Sooner or later, you would realize that all your efforts will be worth it.