How to Get a Baby to Sleep

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Let’s face it.  Babies are really cute when you see them out and about grinning and cheerful however you know as a parent they aren’t always like that – particularly when sleeping is involved.  One of the fundamental issues with infants is the waking up throughout the night.

One of the primary explanations as to why an infant doesn’t sleep or wakes up during the night is that they have had a busy, exciting day.   Don’t forget all of this world is new to them.  They might have been faced with new people, sounds, scents, colors and the like.   Every day is literally a brand new day for your baby!

Each day is different.  Some days your baby may sleep well and other days he or she will be restless and awake.

One reason your child may not be sleeping through the night is that he or she is sleeping at different times during the day.  Remember with babies it’s all about routine, routine, routine.  The more routine his or her schedule the more sleep your baby (and you!) will get.

Whatever routine you decide upon it’s important to do it night after night after night.  That way your baby will know what comes next and he or she will know that this is preparation for ‘sleep time.”
Sample Bedtime Routine:  bath time, feeding time, burping/snuggling, lay them in their crib with dim lights, read them a story and/or sing to them, leave the room.
The earlier you begin a routine the better it will be not only now when your baby is young but also later when your baby becomes a toddler.
Okay, but let’s be real.  No matter how much of a routine you have sometimes your baby just doesn’t go to sleep or sleep through the night.
Here are some more tips that can help make your life easier and get your baby to sleep:

– Teach your child that day and night are different by your actions and engagement with him or her.   For example, during the day talk to her when she eats and engage in play with her.   When you feed your baby at night don’t do these things as they stimulate her.  When you feed at night don’t talk or play.   Feed her in dim light and soothe her but don’t engage so she thinks this is a regular ‘fun’ meal time.

– Babies don’t yet have the skills to go back to sleep on their own.  If this is the case with your little one then pat her back and make soothing noises until she settles herself back to sleep.

– Your baby is totally tuned in to you and your moods.  He or she can feel your anxiety and stress.  If you are anxious and upset about how your baby is not sleeping you better believe he will pick up on it which will make it more difficult to get him or her back down.  The more of a routine you have with your baby the easier this will become and the less stressed out you will get.

– Make sure to burp your baby thoroughly before putting him down for the evening.  Babies with gas are uncomfortable and this can prevent a sound sleep.

– Make sure your baby has a clean diaper and is wearing comfortable clothes to sleep in.  If a baby feels constricted they don’t sleep as well.

– Babies often rub their hand on their ears or rub their eyes when they get tired.  Be mindful of this cue and put them to bed then.  Once your little one starts yawning they are ‘overtired’ which can serve to prevent a sound sleep.

Just remember – every tip and technique doesn’t work for every baby 100% of the time.  There will be times when your baby just wakes up in the night but you can greatly increase your chances of him sleeping through the night if you use these tips and establish a solid routine.