Why is it necessary to develop good sleeping habits for your 0-3 months baby?
Good sleep is important for your baby, as it is for you. The right amount of sleep will ensure your baby’s well – being and a healthy lifestyle. Good sleeping habits start from birth. Babies who sleep early and have the right amount of sleep function properly are not cranky often.
Every child is unique and different. While some sleep less, some sleep a lot. Newborn babies have an erratic sleep schedule but by the time they reach 6 months of their age most of them develop a proper routine. It’s recommended to put your baby to sleep early, so that, your baby will eventually adapt to his routine.
Why is it so important?
Imagine you haven’t had a proper sleep? You wake up fussy and irritated. The same goes for babies too. It is vital that they get a good and peaceful sleep and as a parent, it is your responsibility to make sure of that. It’s a win-win situation as; if he sleeps peacefully you can grab a good sleep too.
• Your baby’s brain is bubbling with curiosity and for proper brain development; he requires a good and proper sleep without any disturbance. It stimulates your baby’s brain and helps in overall development.
• It’s in the initial stages that your baby develops a good sleeping habit and this routine is set up for the next years to come.
• After a day full of activities your baby requires sleep or else they might be cranky and fussy. They might also cry more often and wake up at odd hours in the middle of the night
• New parents tend to get very much tired of taking care of their babies. They are also under a lot of pressure in the initial months as this is very new for them. They suffer from a lot of sleep depravity due to stress. So if your baby is sleeping, don’t waste that golden opportunity and try and sleep at that time.
In the first few months, the sleep requirements of a baby, vary a lot. Newborn babies tend to sleep a lot. They usually sleep 14-16 hours in a day with 4-5 hours at a stretch. They might wake up in the middle of the night and you need to feed. But as they grow older their sleeping hours will stretch longer.
You have to develop a good sleeping habit in them. If you make them sleep at a particular hour, they’ll get acquainted with it over time and form a routine. After 3-4 months their sleep schedule is formed and is quite predictable too.
During their first few months, infants experience a lot of changes in their sleep and they tend to wake up frequently. Inculcating good sleeping habits is very necessary. Some of the ways are:
Swaddle: Babies usually possess a startle reflex and get startled easily in the middle of the night. Keeping a tight swaddle prevents them from walking with a jerk; they tend to sleep longer and snugly.
Feeding: Feed them before putting them in their crib. It’s better for your baby to sleep well-fed so that your baby doesn’t wake up in the middle of the night.
Soothe your baby: Find what soothes your baby. It takes time in the first few months for them to sleep. You can swaddle them or hold them and rock them till they fall asleep. Your presence and touch make it easier for them to sleep.
Develop a sleep routine: The most important of all is to develop a sleep routine for your baby. Encourage them to sleep at a particular time. If they are fussy or cranky and not sleeping try rocking them or holding them, till they fall asleep. Developing a sleep routine in the earlier months helps later.
Safe Sleep Environment: It is very important for your baby to have a safe sleeping environment. They should be placed in a firm flat space on their back preferably in a bassinet or a crib till they reach 12 months of their age. Make sure her environment has a moderate temperature with minimal lighting and noise.
Napping: It is vital that, you encourage napping in your baby. It is believed that the more they are rested, the more easily the sleep comes. But there should be a limit on napping too. Make sure that you wake your child, feed him and let him stay awake for some time and then sleep again. Napping is healthy for your baby.
Sleep patterns: Try and keep your baby’s daytime active and alert and filled with different activities. During the night the atmosphere should be calm and peaceful for your baby to fall asleep easily and develop a routine.
Fall asleep on their own: After 3 months or so allow them to fall asleep on their own. They have a slight idea of their routine now. It is recommended to allow your baby to sleep on its own. If your baby wakes up crying or irritated, give them time to settle on their own before you attend.
Patient: The first few months can be tough on you. Babies tend to sleep less and cry more. As a parent, you have to be very patient with your baby and give them to settle down.
Good sleeping habits will help your baby as they grow. With a spoonful of positivity and patience, you can help them attain these habits. If your baby is suffering from sleep depravity, consult your doctor for better results.