If you know me personally or follow this blog even a little, you know that there are no sleeping beauties in this household. I am pretty much always awake. In fact, I should be sleeping right now. My daughter apparently inherited the sleep avoidance trait along with my curly locks.
“Sleep when the baby sleeps,” they say. What if your baby does not sleep? And what if that baby grows into a toddler that also refuses to nap and forget about sleeping at night. My little one likes to tap me on the shoulder in the middle of the night to regale me tidbits about her day.
Do you feel my pain? Well, McKenzie Brower is here today to give us the tips we need for slumbering success. I am trying every single one and can only hope these tips will work their magic on me, too!
6 Tips to Get Your Little One A Perfect Night of Sleep
Little ones lack the ability to differentiate between day and night because their cognitive development has not reached the stage to enable them do so. As a result, they can be asleep or awake at any time irrespective of the place or circumstances. To ensure that they adapt the normal sleep patterns, it is critical to begin training them so they can adapt to a healthy sleep pattern.
The training can begin as early as when the baby is a couple of weeks old. Remember, it is all about conditioning your baby; hence, the earlier you begin the training, the better. This article explores a few practical tips you can apply to ensure that you child gets a healthy sleep.
Bathing your child with warm water causes relaxation in his muscles, which soothes him to a healthy slumber. Be sure to use a soft washcloth when bathing your child. Massage the child gently with the cloth during bathing so the child can feel that bathing is a soothing experience.
Strategic Use of Light
While lights trigger your child to stay active, darkness creates a sense of inactivity, sending the child into a sleep mood. This is because when you put your child in the darkness, his brain is stimulated to release a sleep hormone called melatonin. Therefore, exposing your child to light and darkness during the day and night respectively prompts him to learn that while light means staying awake, darkness means sleeping. You can train your child to internalize this by doing the following:
• Installing dim lights in your bedroom to induce sleep at night.
• Allowing the child to spend the daytime outside in the light or opening the windows and doors in the daytime to let enough light into your room in case the outside environment is not conducive for him.
• If your bedroom is located in a place where light from outside creep in at night, consider installing proper shades such as opaque window curtains to prevent light from distracting your child’s sleep.
Good scents can soothe the baby to a sleep thanks to their ability to fight anxiety and trigger body relaxation. Examples of fragrances that you can use to induce sleep include lavender oil. Make a few drops of this oil on a tissue and place near the bed for your little one to inhale the scent. However, fragrances may only be suitable for children with six months and above. This is because it may cause allergic reaction among younger children because their skins and noses are very sensitive at this age.
Despite the fact that your child may not have developed enough to understand the importance of stories, storytelling during bedtime ensures that your baby gets a healthy sleep. Your soft and soothing voice at this time gently soothes the baby to a sleep. Also, reading a tory at bedtime helps your baby to grow up with a reading culture.
While in the womb, your child was used to your frequent heartbeats and stomach grumbles. He needs a continuation of the same noises after birth. Therefore, switching on a white noise machine throws his mind back to the days he was in the womb, causing him to have a perfect sleep.
Napping is crucial for a perfect sleep of your little one because it ensures that the child has enough rest to regain his physical or mental state normalcy. The mental and physical relaxation in the daytime extends to the bedtime, affecting your child’s sleep at night. Although some mothers prevent their children from daytime napping in the hope of a proper nighttime sleep, this backfires in most cases.
In a nutshell, a healthy sleep is essential for proper development of your little one, both physically and mentally. As a mother, it is your responsibility to ensure that your child gets a perfect sleep. Although applying these tips may work for your child, it is crucial to note that some or all them may not work for him. This is because every child is unique and needs to be handled in a unique way. Therefore, understanding the unique condition of your child is crucial because it helps you apply the right sleep tips.
McKenzie Brower is a contributing writer and media specialist for Newton Baby. She regularly produces content for a variety of family blogs based around tips and tricks to parenting as well as child safety needs.
What are your best tips for getting your little one the perfect night’s sleep? Please comment and share below!