Life with a newborn can be a wild ride. One minute you're speechless, in awe of this amazing being you have created; and five minutes later your pulling your hair out because you're so bone tired and your baby won't go to sleep. It's in those moments that you start to brainstorm ideas, because you are desperate for some shut eye as well. Luckily, there are some experts out there who know all the newborn sleep hacks to help your baby fall asleep, because you can't survive on naps and coffee for very long.
In the parenting world, sleep is a hot commodity. The more you get, the better you feel. But chances are, if you're baby is not sleeping, then you are not sleeping either. Helping your baby fall asleep will be beneficial for the both of you. Not only will your baby learn to have positive associations with sleep and bedtime, but you will be able to get the slumber you crave. This is one of those rare situations where everybody wins.
If your newborn needs a little help falling asleep at night, try out these 11 newborn sleep hacks to have your little one drifting off to dreamland in no time.
1. Create A Routine
To help little ones be lulled into dreamland, creating a soothing bedtime routine can do the trick, according to What To Expect's website. Some tried and true components to a peaceful night-night routine include bath, lullabies, and reading books.
2. Make The Right Associations
According to the Baby Sleep Site, babies should fall asleep in the same conditions they may wake up to in the night. This means that if rocking and pacifiers are associated with sleep, babies may have trouble falling back asleep without these soothers. But if they learn to fall asleep without things such as this, they are more likely to put themselves back to sleep faster.
3. Put Sleep On The Top Of The List
Fostering good sleep habits in your baby means making sleep a priority. As Parents magazine pointed out, our bodies and brains need sleep to function, and the more value we place on sleep, the better our health will be.
4. Keep The Volume Low
Due to round the clock feedings and diapering needs, your newborn is going to wake periodically throughout the night. To help keep the sleepy vibes flowing, Kids Health recommended maintaining a quiet environment for midnight feedings and diaper changes.
5. Schedule It In
As your baby grows, her sleep needs will change. But Baby Center notes that establishing a sleep schedule for your newborn will pay off in the long run. The predictability will help your baby's body to regulate sleep times and awake times.
6. Make A Point About Daytime
Little ones can't seem to get those days and nights straight at first,, but that doesn't mean you're doomed. Today's Parent suggested exposing your baby to sunlight and noises in daytime (even when they're napping) to help their body learn the cues of night and day cycles.
7. Perfect The Conditions
Just like adults, baby's respond to relaxing cues that usher in sleep. As Parents magazine pointed out, creating restful conditions in your baby's room will increase their likelihood of good sleep. Try black out window shades, aromatherapy, and a cool 70 degree temperature to get started.
8. Drowsiness Is The Sweet Spot
Timing is everything , specially when it comes to putting your newborn to sleep. Take a note from Dr. Sears' website, which suggested laying your baby down drowsy, but still awake when it's bedtime.
9. Try A Dream Feed
Gently waking your baby for a midnight feeding can help your little one sleep longer, according to Baby Center. Known as a "dream feed," keeping lights and voices low while you give your baby that extra feeding may help them to saw some logs for longer stretches of time.
10. Stay Consistent
You may want to keep your baby up longer when they are in a happy and playful mood, but messing with the sacred sleep schedule can have some undesirable results. According to the Division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School, sticking to a sleep schedule helps increase the chances of getting the type of sleep you need. This tip works for babies and adults, alike.
11. Stay Positive
Having a newborn is hard work, and establishing consistent sleep can really frazzle your nerves. What helped me the most in when my boy were little was staying positive and not trying to get too discouraged. I kept reminding myself that sleepless nights wouldn't last forever, and now that I'm on the other side of newborns, I realize my attitude helped get me through those tough nights.