Newborns cannot tell if it is day or night, that is why it is quite hard to keep a sleep schedule. But as soon as the baby is over the first weeks of life, he can gradually learn the differences. Also now is the ideal time to be established the habits for a healthy sleep.
Of course, it is wise to take into account that the baby isn’t hungry, wet or passes through spurts such as the 4-month sleeping spurt, 6-month growing spurt or his teeth spurt. As well sleeping can be disturbed by illness.
If there isn’t the case, then here are some tips from experts in the field that can help anyone in this process, especially for the first time mothers.
Use light in your favor
As with adults, “the light is what naturally tells the child to wake up,” explains Elizabeth Pantley, author of The No-Cry Sleep Solution. On the other hand, darkness transmits to the brain to release a hormone called melatonin, also known as sleep hormone.
So, the best solution is to illuminate them as much as one can during the day, even in winter, when it gets dark early, and to use strategies through which lighting can be used intelligently, to induce their sleepiness in the evening.
Here are some things that can easily be put into practice.
During the day, natural light must be let into the house as much as possible and the baby must be taken for a walk, when the weather is beautiful. When sleeping during the day, the room must be well-lit.
Using a light at low intensity can induce drowsiness in the evening. There are bulbs specially created to allow the adjustment of the intensity or devices that allow the control of all the bulbs in the house, even from the mobile phone, through an application.
For this trick to work, the intensity of the bulbs must be reduced by at least two hours before bedtime.
An equally effective trick is to use lighting fixtures at night. The ones from the Alecoair will help the baby to fall asleep in a dreamy atmosphere, transforming the ceiling of the room into a starry sky.
When the baby wakes up in the night, keep the lights off. If you open the lights, the baby will understand it is time to wake up. Instead, a small candle can be used while breastfeeding or changing him.
During the day if the baby can’t fall asleep or wakes up too soon, matte curtains can be helpful to filter the natural light, which can be too strong for him.
The baby should be placed in the crib when he is about to fall asleep, not when he is already asleep
It is a difficult task, especially for mothers who are breastfeeding, but it will help the mother and her little one to rest better. Eventually they will learn to fall asleep again if they wake up during the night or calm themselves down without any intervention.
Visits to the baby ‘s room at night should be limited
If the baby sleeps in a separate room, it is not recommended for the mom to jump out of bed at every sound heard on the baby monitor. In this way the mom will form the habit of waking up more frequently.
It is ideal that for her to wait a few moments to see if the baby falls asleep alone and calms down. If this does not happen, go to the baby before he wakes up completely and starts crying. If this ideal moment is caught, the situation when the baby is too agitated to fall asleep again can be avoided.
The baby mustn’t be looked in the eye
Many babies are very sensitive to contact, even visual one. If he wakes up during the night and eye contact is made, he can involuntarily understand that it is time to play.
Parents who can’t help it, encourage their children to get out of sleep, explains the experts.
The more the parents interact with the little one during the night, the more he is motivated to wake up completely.
What can one do instead? Besides the lack of eye contact, the baby mustn’t be talked to out loud or to. A soft voice and tender movements work best.
The newborn it is ideally to be fed between 10 and 12 at night
If the baby has trouble sleeping at night, it is ideal to be fed between 10 pm and midnight. This will help him sleep more.
Using a light bulb with the lowest possible intensity and lifting the baby from the crib using gentle movements can also help. Placing him in the table position and after he shows that he has eaten enough, putting him back in bed without hitting him on the back to eliminate the excess air can be an efficient method.
Gentle massage on his belly
Either the belly, or on the back – it depends on how the baby sleeps. It’s a simple way to make the child fell mommy is next to him, but without taking him in the arms. It works one time out of ten, it is a very pleasant method for the parents.
The baby can be left to cry for 10 minutes and then caressed on the belly.
“White” sounds or noises
There are some sounds that calm babies when they are agitated and grumpy and that can make one feel sleepy. Experts say that white sounds are soothing for the little ones. These sounds can be from nature: the sound of flowing waves, wind, rain, but also other ambient sounds.
Even the ticking clock, the washing machine in operation, the hairdryer or the carousel of the bed can be useful in putting the child to sleep. In stranger cases, even the fan, the faucet flowing or a simple hum is a solution.
Certainly this trick has been used not once worldwide, but several times to put a baby to sleep, especially during the day.
Why not in the evening?
The child can be put in the car seat, and if all other techniques fail, a few laps with the car can be taken until he falls asleep. It often proves to be the fastest and most economical (both time and effort) method of putting children to sleep.
Leave a “piece” of mommy with him
Babies would sleep if they could, only in their mommy’s arms. It is the safest, most loving and most peaceful place in the world for them.
Then he can be fooled a little and after breastfeeding, left in the crib and next to him a cotton swab soaked in a little milk or a handkerchief with which mom wiped her breasts when sucking can be placed.
That way he will feel that mommy is always by his side, even if not physically.
Massage between the eyebrows
If the cats or puppies’ are massaged between the eyes they start purring and fall asleep, well, so do babies. When the mother is tired, she can massage the baby between the eyebrows and kiss him or her. Sleep is guaranteed.
Motherhood is a hard but beautiful period. It is the time when kids are most vulnerable and bond with their parents. With some tips and tricks, the overwhelming issues such as sleeping can be solved.