Sleep is so important for everyone. Whether you are a newborn baby or a 40-year-old adult tucking in after a long day. The quality of your sleep directly affects your health and determines how the rest of your day goes. It helps your brain recover and rejuvenates so that it can learn new things. Babies are just adapting to the world and they have so much to learn. It looks like they are sleeping all day but they tend to stay awake at night a lot. Cultivating good sleep habits is important from a very young age so that they adapt to sleeping for longer at night and learn to be awake during the day.
Here are four things that you can do to make sure that your baby sleeps optimally at night.
Let them figure out how to fall asleep on their own
If your baby appears to be sleepy, do not pick them up and cuddle them and put them to sleep that way. Instead, place your baby down when they appear to be sleepy. Do this when they are still awake. Refrain yourself from rocking them to sleep. If they are calm and nothing is bothering them, let them figure out how to fall asleep by themselves. If your baby appears to be sleepy when they are being fed in the night, take the hint. If they seem to fall asleep, wake them up gently. Put them to bed and let them fall asleep over there. Your baby must figure out how to sleep on its own at an early age. This will reduce their dependency on you at all times.
Keep the nighttime calm and peaceful
Babies enjoy the distraction. They love to play. If they sense that you are energetic at the night, they will feel the same way. Do not play with them much as the night sets in. When your baby happens to wake up in the night, don’t engage them much. They might appear to be very excited and playful. Don’t give in to the temptation. Night time is for rest. Your baby needs to understand that nighttime is not the time to play or eat. Such things are best learned at a young age. Do not talk much to your baby and keep the environment quiet. If you feel that you have other things to discuss with your partner or others in the house, do it outside the room. Keep the lights dim and make the environment as cosy as possible so that your baby learns to sleep through the night.
Keep them extra active during the daytime
Reverse whatever you did during the night, during the day. Turn on as many lights as you want and keep the environment as bright and noisy as possible. Engage and interact with your child throughout the day. Do not worry about external noises. Do not make any attempt to cancel them either. This will teach your child that daytime is when people are active and things happen. Make sure that your baby does not happen to fall asleep much during the day. A short nap is fine. But try to keep them awake and play with them. Tire them out throughout the day. This is the best thing that you can do to make sure that they are sleepy at night. When bedtime closes in, change the environment slowly, resetting the environment from vibrant to cosy.
Understand when your baby gives you cues
Babies can be slightly weird. But it is not uncommon for adults either to find it difficult to sleep if they’re extra tired. Watch out for your baby yawning during the day and figure out the best nap times that work for you and them. When your baby is less than two months of age, staying awake for longer than two hours at a time can tire them a lot. Do not let them be overtired because this will not let them sleep properly. If your baby appears to be fussy, take it as a cue that they want to sleep. If they are rubbing their eyes or pulling at their ears, try laying them down to sleep. Watch and observe your baby every day. You will soon realize that you understand them much better and pick up these signs instinctively. When they display such signs of sleepiness, put them to bed. Give them some time to fall asleep and do not prompt it.
Something to keep in mind is that even falling asleep is very new for your baby. They have no idea that it is happening. Do not hurry them up or be worried if what you do doesn’t work immediately. With time and discipline, your baby will be dozing through the night. You will figure it out together.