Many parents suffer from a lack of sleep because their babies don’t sleep well. As any parent who has suffered sleepless nights knows, parenting when you are lacking sleep is painful. When you haven’t had a good night’s sleep, you are overtired, irritable and impatient. When babies don’t get enough sleep, they can be the same way. Fortunately, you can teach a baby to fall asleep, stay asleep and get a solid night’s sleep, using a few amazing baby sleep secrets.
Swaddling Helps Babies Sleep
Swaddling is the art of wrapping a baby snugly in a blanket. While, traditionally, a large square shaped blanket is used to swaddle a baby, there are many “swaddle blankets” on the market for those who have not mastered the art of swaddling. Swaddling helps a baby to feel secure and warm. Swaddling also helps to prevent a baby from waking himself up. Babies are born with a startle reflex that causes them to open their arms and legs in response to hearing a loud noise. Since the babies’ arms are wrapped snugly against his body when swaddled, he is unable to extend his arms or hit himself in the face, which is a frequent cause of waking.
Sound Machines Help Babies Sleep
Sound machines, also called “white noise machines,” can help babies fall and stay asleep. White noise masks the sounds that can disturb babies during sleep. White noise machines also play sounds that are familiar to babies. While a baby is in his mother’s womb, he is constantly hearing the sounds of fluids swishing, foods digesting, and more. In the womb, sound is constant. White noise machines can recreate those constant womb sounds, which can be calming to a baby.
Solid Sleep Habits Help Babies Sleep
Babies sleep better when they have a predictable sleep schedule that is part of their daily routine. By 3 months of age, babies should have consistent bedtimes, naptimes and mealtimes. When putting a baby to bed each night, the routine should be consistent and may include a bath and a story. Babies should be put in their bassinet or crib while they are still awake but drowsy. Babies who are rocked to sleep or held until they fall asleep have a more difficult time staying asleep because they haven’t been taught to fall asleep without assistance. The baby’s sleep area should be dark and cool. The temperature should not be set higher than 70 degrees F. A room that is too warm can cause a baby to feel uncomfortable which can lead to sleeping issues.