Collaborative post with Emma’s Diary
How We’ve Established a Healthy Sleep Routine with our Baby
When you have a baby, sleep is one of those things that all parents want to crack right away. And it’s the first thing people ask you when you have a baby; How are they sleeping? Are they sleeping through yet? And most of the time my answer is no! Stop asking!
We’ve always been pretty strict though with our babies sleep routines. Good sleep is just so important for everyone. If we all sleep well, life is good! So today I’m sharing with you our bedtime routine. We’ve used it with our eldest boy, and we started it around eight weeks with our baby, Lew. And for the most, it works! Have a look at the Emma’s Diary Baby Sleep Advice too for tips on how to create a great baby sleep routine, as well as tips for helping your baby get a good night’s sleep.
First up, stick to the bath, boob/bottle, bed routine. Technically our baby doesn’t need a bath every single day but the warm water, soft scented bubbles and calm environment sets the tone for the evening. We also find a bath a great way for distracting a tired mind during those witching hours. Don’t get me wrong, if we’re late home or have plans, then we skip the bath. But on the whole, a bath signals bedtime!
Quiet Feed Time
Next up is feeding time. From around eight weeks we started taking our baby upstairs to feed before bed. Until that point I’d just stay down and take him up when I was ready for bed. And in those early days that wasn’t late! We bottle fed both our boys in the end. And this worked well in that my husband could do the feeds too before bedtime and during the nights.
For feeding, my main advice would be to keep lights down low and perhaps try some gentle, white noise. I love lava lamps and these work so well for providing dim light. We still use them now in my eldest boy’s bedroom.
Sleeping aids such as white noise can be useful. Whether you use an app or one of the many white noise bears on the market, the gentle sound of waves or a heartbeat can sooth an unsettled baby. Beware though, it’s not a sure fire way to help them sleep. I found our second boy was less fussed with the hums of Ewan!
After a feed, I give Lew a wind and then pop him down awake. We’ve done this since around eight weeks, and as a result, he self-settles really well. If he cries, I pop back in, gently place my hand on his chest and stroke the bridge of his nose. This really helped to settle him in the early days.
What to Wear
In terms of what we put our boys in, both wore sleep suits from day one. From around 3 months we started using sleeping bags. My first boy actually loved to be swaddled. This caused no end of stress because he was born in June and the temperatures at night were roasting! On the other hand, my youngest, born in January, was not fussed at all on being swaddled.
Lew is now one and although he is not sleeping through, he is great at settling himself to sleep for naps and bedtime. If he does wake during the night, it’s usually teeth or illness. Now he’s a little older, we’ll start introducing the next B to the routine…books! My six year old still loves a good story before snuggling down into dreamland.
If you’re struggling to get your little ones into a routine, try not to stress it. Start with a new change and stick to it. Consistency is key with children.
Disclaimer: Until your baby is six months old, the safest place for your baby to sleep is in their own cot, in the same room as you, whether it’s during the night or at nap time in the day.