Getting your infant to sleep through the night can depend on a lot of factors: your infant’s age and weight among others. Typically, the first three months or so of your newborn’s life will not include sleeping through the night on a consistent basis. This is because during the first few weeks of life, your baby will need several feedings during the night, and at regular intervals. But, there are things that you can do to help your baby start sleeping longer stretches at night, as early as possible. And remember, it is completely appropriate for babies to begin sleeping through the night for roughly 11-12 hours, around 4 months (on the early side), but certainly by the time they are 5 or 6 months old.
Don’t worry, we will help you get to that blissful state of sleeping through the night too and as soon as possible! What does that even feel like? Here are some things to consider.
Getting Started Right
If you feel that your baby is ready to start attempting to sleep through the night, then there are a few things that you can do to start the process, especially if they are over 11 pounds in weight and around two months old. Start with a set “bedtime” each night. It’s recommended that children under one year old have a bedtime that is between 6:00 pm and 7:30pm each night. This is a little difficult during the late spring and summer months since it gets dark so late, but it can definitely help. Building a routine will help them get used to understanding when it is time to get serious about sleeping each night.
Allow For Self Soothing
They will definitely wake up a time or two during the night. Try not to worry. It is normal even for adults. Let them fuss for a bit before rushing to pick them up to comfort them. They will typically go back to sleep by themselves within about five minutes. If they start to get worked up, then go ahead and grab them, but otherwise allow the opportunity to self soothe for a few minutes.
Increase Daytime Feeds Before Bedtime
To help them feel less hungry at night, you may want to start feeding your baby more during the hours leading up to bedtime. This will help them need less food at night so that they are less inclined to wake up hungry in the middle of the night. We all need a certain amount of food to keep us sustained through the night. Babies are no exception!
Put Baby To Bed Drowsy
It’s easy to get into the habit of not putting your little one into the crib until they are fully asleep, but that can actually be counterproductive. It’s much better to help equip your baby with the skills they will need to sleep through the night on their own. Start putting them in their sleeping space when they are just starting to show signs of being tired, but not asleep or on the very brink of sleep. Let them adjust and get used to falling asleep on their own in that space. That helps in a lot of ways, but it especially helps them not get startled when they wake up and they are disoriented because they are not where they fell asleep.
Sleep is vitally important to parents and infants alike! We hope these tips have helped you along your journey. If you have any questions about helping your baby to sleep better, or about your baby in general, please reach out to us HERE. We are experts in all things baby and sleep and would love to help!
If you have questions about your child, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We would love to help. Please reach out to us here! We look forward to hearing from you.