Need Some Sleep? Let’s just say…I don’t know since about the beginning of the last trimester of pregnancy, you haven’t slept well. Don’t you love it when people walk up to you at 35 weeks pregnant and they ask “How are you feeling?” The first thing that runs through your head is “Like crap thanks!” My best friend told me “once you get pregnant you’ll never sleep well again, oh for about the next 18 years.” Now that I’m a mother, I believe every word of her statement. Ok, so we had the huge Prego- body pillow that made sleeping somewhat enjoyable, but that was not enough.
Now your newborn is home and life as you know it is all of out wack. Trying to get your new baby into a routine with feeding and sleeping at times can be challenging. Here are some helpful tips to get you some much needed zzzzzzz’s. There is a light at the end of the tunnel…beginning at 3 months!
Have you considered Sleep Training your Baby?
This is a routine of helping your baby getting to sleep and most importantly stay asleep. During the first three months your newborn needs to eat every few hours. To keep yourself from sleep deprivation, sleep when your baby is asleep.
Before you decided to start sleep training consult with your pediatrician. Every baby is unique some may need a bit more time than others. Sleep training usually begins as the night feedings decrease. This will allow your baby to sleep a nice span of 8-12 hours.
Idea #1 Cry it out (aka the Ferber Method)
Placing your baby in the crib awake and letting them fall asleep on their own. Your baby will cry, comfort your baby, but DO NOT pick up your baby. Ferber believes that “in order for babies to fall asleep on their own and sleep through the night babies have to learn to soothe themselves.”
Idea#2 No Tears (William Sears author of The Baby Sleep Book)
Provides a sleep training method with a gradual approach; if the baby cries parent will comfort immediately. “Be prepared for one style of nighttime parenting to work at one stage of an infant’s life yet need a change as he enters another stage.”
Idea #3 Don’t Control Bed Time (Tracy Hogg, author Secrets of the Baby Whisperer)
Babies are looking to their parents to be the leaders and to teach them. A good nightly routine of consistency is important. “Sleep problems are common because so many parents don’t realize that they, not their babies, must control bedtime.”
As stated before every baby is unique especially if this is your second or third. More importantly each of us as mothers are different. We have unique personalities like our babies. I recommend that you at least check out these ideas. You may use some aspects of one and not the other. However, I will stress the earlier you start a routine the better it will be for YOU mom!
Babies and children love routines, make it fun and a time for family bonding. For example: have fun with bath time, play with ducky, water toys and books. After lotion and put on those favorite pajamas, bottle feeding, and then read a bedtime story. Don’t be so quick to give up, just be patient. You will see in a few short weeks as your baby matures, they look and enjoy the new routine you have for them…Nighty, night.