There are few things in life more exciting than bringing home a brand new baby!
Babies bring joy, excitement, and fulfillment to life, but they can also leave you feeling exhausted.
You'll need energy, though, to care for your baby, and a great way to get the energy you need is by establishing a baby sleep schedule.
Now, this isn't going to happen overnight. But, it can happen a lot faster if you are intentional with it.
Here are some helpful tips you can use to create a good sleep schedule for your little child.
Start When Your Little One Is a Few Weeks Old
It's not easy to train a brand-new baby to stick to a schedule, so don't try to rush this. Instead, wait until your child is at least a few weeks old before implementing a sleep schedule routine.
If you start too soon, you may feel discouraged when your plan is not working. Be patient, and start slowly. It will take some time for you to learn your baby, and for your baby to learn a routine.
Your baby will most likely adapt well to an established routine by the time he or she is a few months old.
Keep Day and Night Separate
Babies aren't born with a sense of night and day, so helping them learn the difference is key to a successful sleep schedule. You can start right away!
During the day, keep the blinds or curtains open to let lots of daylight in. When your baby isn't napping, give them lots of stimulating play, conversation, and eye contact. At night and nap time, turn the lights and volume low.
When your baby wakes to feed at night, turn on the dimmest light possible, keep talking to a minimum, and resist the urge to gaze into their eyes (they find it really stimulating!). They'll soon start to realize that day is for activity and night is for sleep.
Create a Routine Before Bed
As your baby begins growing, you should create a routine to use before bed. A lot of parents like bathing their babies before bed. Next, they may read a story to their child. After that, they may cuddle them and sing them a lullaby.
These are all great activities to incorporate into a sleep schedule. As your baby develops, he or she will get used to the order of these events and will know what to expect next.
Having a schedule is essential for a baby's cognitive development. Babies will even sleep better when they have a schedule to follow.
Let Him or Her Fall Asleep Alone
One aspect to include in your bedtime routine is letting your baby fall asleep on his or her own. Don't wait to put your newborn to bed until he or she is sleeping. Instead, let your child learn how to fall asleep alone.
Offer a Safe, Nurturing Environment
It's also essential to provide your newborn with a safe, nurturing environment to sleep in. Your baby should sleep in a room that is dark and cool. It should be free of drafts, too.
You can play white noise in the background to offer a soothing sound for your baby, and you should always put your baby to sleep in the same place for naps and bedtime.
Learn More About Developing a Baby Sleep Schedule
Creating a baby sleep schedule is vital for you and your child. If you start working on it and stay consistent, you'll have a good routine to use each day.
If you would like more information about parenting a new baby, check out our blog for more helpful articles.