4 Effective Approaches For Your Little One To Sleep Soundly
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Welcoming a baby into this world is undoubtedly a sacred blessing. For mothers, nurturing their child into a healthy, happy adult is a dream come true. But despite the bliss that a newborn brings into your life, the joy of embarking on motherhood comes at a hefty price: sleep deprivation.
First-time mums often find themselves drained and fatigued after the arrival of their little one. Since an infant's sleeping patterns are erratic, parents are kept up at night. For instance, loud cries or fussing in the wee hours of the morning are common disturbances to expect when caring for your baby. Remember, your child hasn't learned the rhythms of night and day – and they certainly don't know when to sleep!
It takes time before your precious one gradually adapts to their designated sleeping hours. During the process, you may be discouraged if your baby doesn’t respond well to sleep training. Fortunately for new mums, this comprehensive guide will arm you with several tried-and-tested hacks to get your newborn to slumber soundly throughout the night.
1. Use white noise to mimic the sound of the womb
A baby’s sense of hearing typically develops at approximately 18 weeks. From that time till birth, all your child hears and gets accustomed to are the muffled sounds of your womb. Upon ushering your newborn home, they may struggle to adjust to the sudden onslaught of sounds and lights. This can cause them to feel disturbed and refuse sleep time. As such, investing in a baby white noise machine can do wonders in calming down a disgruntled infant before bed.
White noise works miracles with fussy newborns and is an excellent tool to boost baby sleep. Not only does it drown out jarring noises in the background, but it also mimics the familiar, mellow sound that infants hear in the womb! This helps calm your child’s nerves as they adapt to their new environment, allowing them to feel safe and secure.
Some machines are also armed with instrumental lullabies or the sound of a heartbeat, which can be highly comforting for babies.
2. Avoid overstimulation during the day
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Welcoming a new member of the family into the household is always an exciting occasion. As a parent, you may feel inspired to begin bonding with your child immediately with a host of activities. But amidst your enthusiasm, it’s easy to forget that your newborn is still adapting to the environment around them! They’re taking in unfamiliar sights and smells for the first time, and they could experience a sensory overload.
As such, one common mistake that first-time mums tend to make is overstimulating their children with toys all day. Due to overstimulation, you may notice them withdrawing from your touch or demand to be held for extended periods. Furthermore, resisting sleep time is yet another side effect of overstimulation in a child.
Your newborn requires time to wind down before bed. Ideally, it would be best to halt all activities a few hours before bedtime and slowly soothe them to sleep. This way, your young one can enter relaxation mode and settle into a sleepy state with ease. Before long, they’ll be able to sleep peacefully throughout the night!
3. Swaddle your newborn
Swaddling works like absolute magic for parents struggling to soothe and calm a cranky newborn to sleep. That’s why when you’re on the hunt for baby supplies, be sure to include a swaddle blanket for their sleeping needs! Similar to how white noise mimics the sounds inside your womb, swaddling your baby brings them utmost comfort. This is because a swaddle ‘hugs’ your little one and establishes an environment akin to that of your womb. Hence, your infant will feel safe enough to fall into a deep sleep.
Additionally, some infants encounter difficulty falling asleep on their backs because they startle themselves awake. When they’re swaddled, it prevents them from waking with a shock from a startle reflex. Swaddling ensures that your child does not enter dangerous situations, such as rolling onto their stomach or getting their head caught in loose blankets.
4. Put your baby into their crib before bed
Newborn babies love curling up in the arms of their parents while they sleep, but it’s not a viable solution in the long run. Mums, don’t underestimate the importance of ample rest to recharge and fuel. Rocking your child to bed throughout the night will eventually take a toll on your physical health! In fact, being sleep deprived will result in over-exhaustion, and you’ll not be able to respond to your infant’s needs well.
If your little one needs to be held constantly to sleep, it’s best to start instilling independent sleeping habits as soon as possible. For instance, gently lay your baby down in their crib as soon they’re about to drift off to bed. Should whining or crying ensue after the transfer, your sweet words of affirmation are acceptable but, resist picking your newborn up.
While the first few weeks of implementing this change may be extremely chaotic, so long as you repeat this bedtime routine enough, your little one will eventually get used to self-soothing. From then on, they’ll be able to sleep independently without any fuss.
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With infants, you’ll go through plenty of trial and error before figuring out the sleeping technique that works best for your child. But even if you don’t meet with success immediately, don’t be in a rush to get it right! You have all the time in the world to accustom your baby to their new environment.
When things get rough, don’t hesitate to lean on your spouse for support. Together, you’ll have the strength to overcome all obstacles and build a stronger family bond with your precious one.