55 Tips to Get Your Baby Sleeping Through the Night 

55 Tips to Get Your Baby Sleeping Through the Night 

As a mother of a little boy, I’m keenly aware of how difficult it sometimes is to get your child to sleep through the night. Or sometimes, the problem is that I can get him down, but he simply won’t go out cold. But I’m going to share with you the best 55 tips for getting your baby to sleep through the night, so that you can get a good night’s sleep yourself!

Do you have issues with your child waking up throughout the night? Take heart. All parents experience rough patches with their baby. Each child is different and what works for one baby isn’t going to work for another. Rest assured that one of these awesome 55 tips is going to work for you, helping you to establish an ideal bedtime routine.

There will be some sacrifice involved in order to achieve a perfect night’s sleep, but it’s going to be well worth the effort! Be sure to first check and see what the underlying causes of your child’s sleep patterns are, such as colic or digestive issues which make sleep-time quite difficult for your child. Also, if your child suffers from allergies, this could be another big issue keeping them up.

Below we’re going to explore the very best ideas that mothers swear by to help your baby fall asleep through the entire night, or at least long enough for you to get enough sleep. Are you ready for the best sleep of your parenting life? Let’s get started.

http://www.webmd.com/digestive-disorders/

http://parentinn.com/best-video-baby-monitor-reviews

#1 Be Realistic!

At the end of the day, you have a beautiful, lively baby that is trying to figure out how to be in the world, and every baby has sleep problems. Don’t expect to get a solid night’s sleep when your baby is new to the world. When you prepare yourself mentally to get up through the night, your attitude is going to be more positive, making the experience easier for both of you.

http://www.webmd.com/parenting/baby/sleep-naps-12/newborns

#2 Get your baby checked

There could be underlying medical reasons why your baby isn’t sleeping well, so it’s important to get your child checked for tummy aches, ear infections, fever, or digestive problems. When you rule out medical reasons for sleepless nights, then you can start to explore lifestyle tips that can make a real difference.

http://www.healthline.com/symptom/difficulty-sleeping

#3 Feed your baby a light meal before sleeping

With a full belly of food, your child will feel satisfied and will sleep better. Consider something like warm milk and baby cereal, or a formula/breast milk for newborns. No one can sleep well on an empty tummy, and neither can your baby.

http://www.fisher-price.com/en_US/parenting-articles/nutrition-and-feeding/when-to-give-a-baby-cereal

#4 Use the bedroom only for night sleep

Make sure that naps happen at the right time and in the right place. Use the bedroom only for nighttime sleeping, so that the child can learn that that’s the place to have a full night’s sleep, as opposed to just a short spell of sleeping, or light sleeping. After a 45 minute nap, be sure to wake them up, so they don’t go out for too long.

http://lifehacker.com/5950732/the-science-of-the-perfect-nap

#5 Is it too quiet?

A small white noise machine is going to help your baby sleep better. Mothers falsely assume that their child needs perfect quiet, but actually, a little noise like the hum of a humidifier or fan is going to help the baby sleep more soundly.

https://simplynoise.com

#6 Stop the blame game

New mothers are hard on themselves, but don’t fall into this trap! If your baby isn’t sleeping well, it’s not your fault. Some babies sleep better than others, and when they’re going through a rough patch, take heart that it’s only going to last for a little while.

http://www.webmd.com/parenting/baby/ss/slideshow-baby-proofing-essentials

#7 Use a stuffed animal or soft blanket

Use a baby-proof toy or a soft blanket to comfort your child in their crib. When they feel that security and warmth, they’re more likely to sleep soundly.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aCJhV1yAUSM

#8 Pay attention to the noise level

You don’t need to keep the house perfectly quiet when you lay your baby down to sleep. When you do this, each little sound is going to wake your child up. Instead, keep the noise level normal while they’re napping, and also quiet at night.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oewj_XEM1js

#9 Embrace swaddling

Your baby may not sleep well if they’re wearing loose clothing when they sleep. Babies love to be swaddled, so be sure to wrap them up tight. Swaddling helps the child feel safe and secure, and they’re sure to get a better night’s sleep.

http://www.babycenter.com/0_swaddling-your-baby_125.bc

#10 Dim or dark?

Even a little light in the room is going to disrupt your child’s sleep patterns. That’s why it’s important to keep the room as dim as possible. Make the night lighting and day lighting as distinct as possible so that your child knows when it’s time to sleep through the night.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oewj_XEM1js

#11 Put your partner to work

When your baby is getting up throughout the night, you shouldn’t be the only one that does all the work. Take turns tending to the baby, so that your partner has an equal opportunity to care for the child. You can also select which nights of the week your partner tends to the child, and which nights it is your job.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=josZkNl34NM

#12 There’s no need for a regimented sleep schedule

It never works. A regimented sleep schedule will not ensure that your child sleeps soundly. You’re going to need to always adapt and be flexible, because some nights your child will be sick, have bad dreams, or be too hot or cold to sleep soundly.

https://parenting.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/01/21/do-children-need-a-sleep-schedule/?_r=0

#13 Find your bedtime routine

Creating a nice bedtime routine will help to prepare your baby for sleep. A nice warm bath is the best way to calm your child down and lull them into a good night’s rest. Try to give your child a bath a half hour before their bedtime.

http://www.parentinn.com/tips-guide/baby-sleep/importance-setting-bedtime-properly

#14 Find a fun nightlight

When you use an entertaining nightlight, it can help your child to fall asleep without you having to do all the work. Find something that is not too bright, but still emits enough light for your child to see.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=josZkNl34NM

#15 Keep in mind this is temporary

Sleepless nights don’t last forever. When you realize this, it will help you to hunker down and do your best, and have the right, positive attitude. Your child will eventually sleep without any fuss.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eFdCV98-oyY

#16 Your baby will let you know when they’re tired

If your child becomes cranky, rubs their eyes, or yawns, it’s a signal that they’re ready to sleep. Keep in mind that your child will sleep better when they’re tired at night.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eFdCV98-oyY

#17 Don’t hold your child while napping

You may want to hold them in your arms, but this is just creating a bad habit. Eventually they’re not going to be able to sleep unless they’re in your arms.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YZf-X42JBTY

#18 Draw a bath

As we mentioned earlier, a nice warm bath sends a message to your child that it’s time to become sleepy. Make sure that the bath is a quiet experience, as well.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YZf-X42JBTY

#19 Limit naps

You want to limit the number of naps throughout the day because it will make them sleepier at night, which is a good thing.

http://www.babysleepsite.com/baby-naps-2/baby-toddler-napping-too-much/

#20 Change their diaper before sleeping

This will ensure a better night’s sleep, and you can increase the effect by giving them a special nighttime diaper which will hold more moisture for longer.

http://www.parentinn.com/reviews/baby-diaper/5-best-cloth-diaper-reviews

#21 Experiment with room temperature

Some babies like warm air, and some like it cooler. When you incorporate a humidifier you can more easily test what works for your baby.

https://www.babysleepsite.com/how-we-sleep/baby-sleep-temperature/

#22 Sleep when your baby does

It’s not recommended that you sleep in the same bed as your baby, but you can put them down in a room where you’re sleeping as well. This helps to calm the child.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ERCnLC0nDQw

#23 Experiment with noise levels

Similar to temperature, sometimes a baby sleeps with a little more background noise in the house, and sometimes they don’t. If the TV is on, experiment with what level of volume your child sleeps best with.

www.babysleepsite.com/tag/baby-sensitivity/

#24 Move things around

Sometimes the baby just needs a little change of scenery. Consider it baby feng shui. Move the crib to a different spot in the room and see if your child sleeps more soundly.

http://www.wikihow.com/Soothe-a-Baby

#25 All babies are different

What works for your neighbor’s baby might not work for your baby. And also, what works for one of your children may not work for the other. Focus on finding your child’s unique needs.

http://www.parentinn.com/plan-sleep-routine-baby

#26 Try different positions

See how your baby likes to lie in their crib. Some babies like to sleep on their backs, while others want to sleep on their right or left sides.

https://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/baby/sleep/Pages/Sleep-Position-Why-Back-is-Best.aspx

#27 Use a baby monitor

When you can reach your baby immediately as they start to cry, it prevents them from breaking into a full wail. Use a baby monitor so that you can reach your child instantly.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QpTJk1f5aoo

#28 Don’t turn the lights on

When you go to your baby’s room at night, be sure to not turn the lights on. This is too stimulating for the child and makes them too alert in the middle of the night.

https://www.buybuybaby.com/store/category/bedding-decor/room-decor/lighting/32273/

#29 Use warm pajamas

Babies like to be warm, but not hot. Try some warm pajamas and be sure to swaddle them in a blanket.

http://www.carters.com/carters-pajamas

#30 Avoid over-stimulation

Avoid too much stimulation when your child wakes in the night. When you come into the room to feed them in the middle of the night, try not to speak to them, as this is too stimulating.

http://www.mom365.com/baby/moms-health/12-great-newborn-mom-tips/

#31 Use aromatherapy

Sometimes a gentle diffuser with lavender oil will set the tone for your child. Even just a drop or two of oil on a cotton ball near their bed can do the trick.

http://naturaltransition.com/therapies-for-infants/aromatherpy-and-your-baby/

#32 Do not disturb your child when they’re asleep

Even though you may want to go into their room to watch them sleep or tuck them in, it’s important to not disturb your baby in the least once they’re sleeping.

http://kidshealth.org/en/parents/guide-parents.html

#33 Watch your caffeine levels

If you’re still breastfeeding, be careful how much caffeine you’re drinking during the day. Try drinking a cup of warm milk before you feed them at bedtime.

http://kellymom.com/bf/can-i-breastfeed/lifestyle/caffeine/

#34 Use massage

Sometimes giving your child a gentle massage before they sleep will help them to relax. When they feel warm, soothing hands it helps to lull them to sleep.

http://www.babycenter.com/slideshow-baby-massage

#35 Use a reward

When your baby is older, it’s fun to use a reward chart that notes when they successfully sleep through the night. This will help you and your child to set goals.

http://www.netmums.com/preschooler/improving-behaviour-with-reward-charts

#36 It’s all about routine

When there’s a comfortable bedtime routine in play, your baby gets the hint that it’s time to fall asleep. This can include a warm bath, massage, light meal, and a nighttime story.

http://www.themilitarywifeandmom.com/starting-babywise-top-10-newborn-baby-sleep-tips/

#37 Use a baby swing

A baby swing will help your child to rock back and forth, and this motion relaxes them and helps them to sleep.

http://www.babysleepsite.com/baby-naps-2/should-baby-nap-in-infant-swing/

#38 Research attachment parenting

When you wear your baby in a sling throughout the day, you’re practicing attachment parenting. The movement of the sling helps them to relax and feel more secure.

http://www.askdrsears.com/topics/parenting/attachment-parenting/7-benefits-ap

#39 Experiment with sleep during the day

Too much or too little will disrupt nighttime sleeping. See how much napping during the day leads to better sleeping at night. This amount will change as the child gets older.

https://www.preciouslittlesleep.com/are-you-making-these-baby-sleep-mistakes/

#40 Switch it up

Not every routine suits every baby. When you experiment with your nighttime routine, you have a better chance of finding the one that really works for your child.

http://www.parentinn.com/how-to-set-up-bedtime-properly

#41 Sleep training

With sleep training, you lay the baby down before they’re fully asleep, and even if they begin to cry, you give them a few minutes to calm down. This teaches your child to understand that it’s time to go to bed.

http://www.parents.com/baby/sleep/tips/ten-steps-to-sleep-training-success/

#42 Use your scent

By placing a t-shirt or article of clothing that you wore throughout the day in the crib with your child, they will pick up your scent and feel your presence and security.

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/smell-life/200811/comfort-smelling

#43 It’s all about consistency

Once you find the right routine, stick to it. This is going to give you the best chance of developing positive sleeping habits for your child.

http://www.mybabysleepguide.com/2014/07/consistency-and-sleep-training.html

#44 Make the space work for you

If you’re getting up a lot during the night to tend to your child, be sure that the space is set up to help you tend to your baby. Put diapers and baby wipes in a location that is easy to get to in the dark, and keep burp cloths nearby during feeding time

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=prlBj2pY7Xk

#45 Work on your feeding schedule

When your child is on a feeding schedule throughout the day, it’s going to ensure that they sleep better at night. When feeding and sleeping are like clockwork, your child is going to get in the habit of sleeping better.

http://www.parentinn.com/importance-setting-feeding-schedule

#46 Do some research on co-sleeping

Everyone has an opinion when it comes to co-sleeping, but it’s best to do some research and figure out what works best for both you and your child. Follow your instincts and do a little testing to see what is the optimal situation for your baby.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8h-J9Kb3Mjo

#47 Bedtime should be fun!

Have a positive attitude, smile at your baby when you bathe them, and sing pretty lullabies. This will make sleep time a happy time, and something that is not threatening. When you do this, your baby will come to enjoy the sleep routine, and will feel more secure throughout the night.

http://www.parents.com/baby/sleep/issues/best-bedtime-songs/

#48 Room decor

When the baby’s room is decorated in a soothing style, it teaches them that that space is where they can sleep and feel safe. Consider painting the walls with soothing colors, such as light blue or soft green. These hues are naturally calming.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ktNLTXRPvTQ

#49 Be sure that you’re needed

Sometimes you’ll hear something on the baby monitor, such as your child moving or lightly crying. Give it a beat to be sure that the child is indeed awake and calling out for you. If they’re having a dream and making noise, then you don’t want to wake them.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2760764/Mammals-respond-distress-calls-newborns-regardless-species.html

#50 Talk to other parents

Be sure to ask parents what has worked for them. Even though their tips might not work for your baby, it’s important to learn as much as you can from your fellow parents, because often they have special hints that could work for you.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-_gUeNMa3mA

#51 Read-up

There are tons of parenting books on the market, and these can really help in terms of learning tricks from the professionals. It’s best to read these books before your bring your baby home, so that you’re armed with knowledge.

http://www.parenting.com/blogs/mom-congress/melissa-taylor/10-best-books-thinking-parents

#52 Ask your pediatrician

Along with reading books, you can also ask your doctor for tricks that they have discovered in their practice. There’s always new studies being conducted which bring to light new findings and discoveries.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BiaqtiIbWJk

#53 Breathe

When all else fails, be sure to have a breath, and a sense of humor. Some babies are just going to be fussy, no matter what. When you breathe and center yourself, you’ll realize that the moment will pass, and your child will grow out of it.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FwkaEQ7xXe8

#54 Try to nap with your child

When your baby is seriously keeping you up at night, it means that you’re not getting enough sleep as well. It might be tempting to try to get things done during the day while your child naps, but it’s important that you get enough rest as well.

http://smarttereachday.com/should-moms-take-naps-thoughts-on-guilt-rest-and-how-to-feel-peppier/

#55 Fresh air and exercise

If you’re exercising during the day, be sure to bring your baby with you. A nice walk in the park with the stroller will do wonders for both of you, as you’re getting fresh air and experiencing the outdoors, which aids in overall wellbeing.

https://www.fitpregnancy.com/exercise/postnatal-workouts/8-new-mom-workout-moves-do-baby

Conclusion

Now you have 55 wonderful tips for how to help your baby sleep better at night! Keep in mind that sleep is a habit, and when you start building the right routine, you’re creating a ritual that will help your baby sleep soundly.

Don’t be frustrated if the routine that once worked stops working. Your child will continuously change as they grow. This is natural. It’s important that you be flexible, caring, and positive with your child. If they sense your frustration, they’re going to be more frustrated as well.

What I know for sure is that many of these tips completely changed the way that I put my child to sleep, and ultimately, has changed the way that I sleep as well, for the better!

Did you find this article helpful? If so, be sure to share it with a friend, or add comments at the bottom to spark a conversation. As parents, there’s nothing more important than sharing with one another so that we can all go on this remarkable journey together!

The Tale of the Green Vase

And is anything really that big of a deal?

I’m a dramatic person. I always have been. I cry a lot, I fret, worry, worry again, and then I make myself so exhausted that I sleep for twelve hours and get up and do it all over. But, on the outside I’m like a Sphinx.

I am housesitting for a dear friend in the lovely river village of Piermont in New York. The house is cozy, Victorian, lived-in, and perfect. Everything in the home speaks of a rich, full life of family, food, books, treasures, history……everything that makes me immediately self-conscious and clumsy.

It was my first day in the home. It was warm and inviting when I stepped in, which was welcoming after the massive snow storm that hit the day before. I was anxious, and yes, fretting. I felt off-balance. Maybe I was still jet-lagged from the flight to New York, or I simply felt like Goldilocks entering while the bears were off looking for honey.

Whatever it was, tragedy struck when I went to accomplish my first duty as houseguest. It was time to water the plants. Now, there are literally about 30 of them, and each has their own funky personality. I went around the house, introducing myself to the plants – my new friends and dependants for the next month. It was just us. We were in this together. I saved the big guy for last. Or is it a girl?

The large hanging plant, which I later learned is a philodendron – like someone later learns the name of the person that they hit and killed in the street – hung up high in the kitchen, and its numerous, luxurious vines spread across the entire room, up over the tops of cabinets, down the sides of the three-tiered hanging produce basket, and winding around vases, old sugar jars, and an unused toaster. The vines were so long that there were bound up around the produce basket, wound like a hose on its hanger.

Yes, I was told that there was a stool in the kitchen that was to be used to water said plant, but in light of my fretfulness, many unsteadiness, and my wacky brain, I did not remember this till later in the week, when my senses returned.

So, I did something so unbelievably stupid that I shudder to think of it. I gazed up at the plant, my brows knit, my bones chilled, my hands shaky, and I wondered how the hell I was supposed to water the plant. “Ah, look.” I thought to myself. “There is a long pole with a hook on the end. It must be used to reach up and take the plant down, as one does in a clothing store when they grab a hanger way out of reach.”

I would later discover that this pole was for the skylight above.

So, innocently, I took the pole and placed the hook at the end around one of the three spokes of the hanging plant. And lo, the bough breaks, and everything came crashing down. Including the green vase that the philodendron wrapped its tentacles around.

Plant down. Vines broken. Green vase crushed.

That vase would become a symbol for the next 31 days of my failure, my shakiness, my lack of place. My intrusion.

Terrible thoughts to have about one’s self, I know, but alas. I spent the entire month searching and searching for the appropriate vase to replace the old one. It was my obsession. Strolls through Manhattan would be consumed by window shopping, praying that the identical vase would be found, like the golden ticket to the Chocolate Factory. I became fascinated by periodicals about indoor plants. Any new garden store I went past was potential salvation.

Online, I would search ceaselessly, to find the appropriate size, dimensions, and perfect shade of Kelly green. I would stare at the kitchen endlessly, trying to analyze which choice was most appropriate for the design scheme. Then I would think, what if that vase was an heirloom? What if it used to hold their grandmother’s ashes? I felt like dirt.

The replacement that I chose came from Etsy. It seemed like the right color of green, the height was appropriate, and it didn’t cost $100. I ordered it, and temporarily, a weight was lifted from my shoulders. That is, until I had second thoughts. Surely, I must have made the wrong decision, I thought. What about that antique French ceramic pitcher that was my second choice? No. It was the color of grass. Not right.

In the wee hours of the night, when I lie in bed and everything feels like a huge mistake, nay, a disaster, in my life, that’s when I would start to imagine that I could fix something if I just felt this wave of power in my solar plexus. (Dramatic and weird). I would start to create this ball of power and send this ball down the stairs to the vase so that it would magically fix itself, and that the broken vines of the Philodendron would grow anew.

At three-thirty in the morning, half asleep, I actually believed that this was possible. I extended it to my life too. If I could feel this power at three-thirty in the morning, then I’d extend it to everywhere. I’d fix the hole that I had found myself in, the messes that I had made, the relationships that felt lost, the deep sense of failure that had come over me.

Then I’d wake up in the morning, look up at the ceiling, and think to myself, “damnit..”

The month went by. I continued to talk to the plants. The vase ended up being a fine replacement, and I put it in front of the broken one, so as not to conceal what I had done (and I couldn’t trash the old one in case it had been a bearer of ashes), but more so to just gently protect the eye from the turmoil that I had caused. It was a buffer, and it actually looked quite nice.

I continued to water the Philodendron, and each time I BROUGHT OUT THE STOOL to reach up towards it, I would say, “I’m so sorry…I’m so sorry…I’m so sorry….” Its long, broken stems were turning yellow.

Finally, it was the day of the return of the three bears. Well, actually, two humans and a dog. They were coming home late so I went to bed early, ready to explain my failure in the morning. I cleaned the house so it looked perfect, looked up at the plant, and said a prayer.

The next morning I came down, feeling hopeful and having slept like a dead person. (worry, fret, worry, fret, sleep……). When I looked up at the vase, it had been moved aside, exposing the broken one, as though it were the first thing they saw when they entered the house late at night.

For a moment I thought that I would vomit.

I ate an apple, which always helps with nausea. I sipped water. I embraced my fate.

There was stirring upstairs and I took a breath. Footsteps were heard, and the wife entered the kitchen, a smile on her face. I smiled back, surprised by her open face. She said “Your beautiful-(early morning stutter)-it was beautiful last night.” She was referring to the home. I smiled, I relaxed and finally said, “You must have seen this.” I was pointing to the vase.

“Oh, yes, it doesn’t matter.” She replied. It turns out the only reason she saw it was because she just happened to have bought some new dried stems to place in it while she was gone.

It doesn’t matter. That’s what she said. To think, for a month, I had this feeling inside that was beyond terrible. Like I drank poison. I know that feeling well, because I carry it around inside of me for many different situations, both big and small.

I doesn’t matter.

And I began to question the horrible feelings that I had about other aspects of my life. Did they really matter? Were my feelings about the darkness within me accurate? Was the darkness even accurate?

OR, was that powerful feeling of magic in the middle of the night actually what patched it all up after all?

Ooooooooooh. I like that option.

 

 

Bespoke

I had never heard the word before, which is funny considering that I’ve been writing for about 10 years now. I heard Kate Blanchett use it on a promotional video for SKII skin care. It’s a Japanese brand that has fermented something-or-rather in it, and when I put it on my face I look like I’m 14. It also costs a million dollars.

(Yes, I do hunt for skin care videos on YouTube with the same late night, bleary-eyed guilt that someone might, say, search for porn in the darkness of their room, the bright tablet illuminating their expectant face.)

Anyways, Kate Blanchett was going on and on about the new line for SKII, and she says, “It’s quite bespoke, really.” She made it sound like the damn most elegant word in the English language. From then on, I have been obsessed. But the thing is, because the word is suffused with the luminous elegance of Kate Blanchett, I want to use the word all the time. Albeit, all the time and inappropriately.

Say someone brings up politics. Such and such happened on Capital Hill today. I want to reply, “Oh yes. I did hear of that. It’s really quite tawdry and bespoke, if you ask me.” My friend makes a joke and I want say, “Oh friend, ha ha ha, c’est tré bespoke!”

The truth is that I don’t think I have to guts to misspeak bespoke.

BUT, I can at least use it in the safe recesses of my mind. When I peer into a shop window and see the sparkly new blouse that can change my life, I will think to myself. “How bespooooooooke.” (Drawing it out, thusly) And for a moment, I will feel like the classiest woman in the world.

And on that note, I actually need to remind myself what bespoke actually means again.