• Sat, Sep 12 2009

10 Ways to Get Baby to Sleep

Whether you are a first time parent or already have a child, sometimes one needs a little help in thinking of ways to coax that baby to sleep. A newborn baby is adjusting to a lot of changes in his/her new world, no longer is it muffled and dark but now there are things all around them and noises they don’t quite understand. It’s no wonder they don’t always want to go to sleep when they need to or when you’d like them to sleep.

IMG: Elizabeth Ferree

IMG: Elizabeth Ferree

Here’s a few ways to help them sleep:

Ways to Get a Baby to Sleep:

Develop a routine- This doesn’t work with every child, in fact you may already have a routine and suddenly your baby just stops sleeping. This could also be a sign that the baby may be sick, teething or scared. But if this is an issue of just coming home from the hospital the parent will want to quickly establish some form of routine. By developing a constant routine you are showing the newborn that there is day and night, even naptimes. Many like to give the baby a bath, bottle/breast and then bed, this way they know once this has happened they go to sleep.

2 Rocking the Baby- While this method doesn’t always work it has been one I’ve tried many times with success. Simply hold the baby against you so he/she feels secure and rock or sway gently back and forth, this works perfectly in a rocking chair.

Singing to Baby- Believe it or not the baby loves your voice, even if you are the worst singer in the world. Simply sing a soft lullaby or something you sang while the baby was in the womb and watch the magic work. You’ll soon see a sleeping baby, no I’m not sure if it is a response to you singing beautifully or so horrible the baby desperately wanted to sleep.

Play some Soft Sounds- Babies seem to like to feel that others are nearby, try playing a tape of soft sounds such as waves hitting the shore, rainsdrops landing on the ceiling, birds chirping, etc. Or just a lullaby CD, this can become a habit that will be hard to break later,. But it will definitely help your baby sleep.

Leave Baby Alone/let baby cry-  Don’t start throwing rocks my way just yet. Many people swear by this and believe if you let the baby get him/herself to sleep they will be able to rely on themselves and not the parent. Place baby in the crib, blanket, playpen and walk away, even if the baby is crying. (I’d still peek in on them)

Lightly stroke baby’s face-  This is the one that has always worked for my children. Lightly stroke your baby over the eyes and down the nose until they finally fall asleep.  It’s the light touch the baby likes but since it is so light and they expect it they finally drift off to sleep. Sometimes stroking the hair works with this routine as well.

Go on a Walk-  Grab the stroller, your baby and head out the door. Most of the time a baby will fall asleep as the surroundings in front of them come and go as if it were rocking back and forth in front of them. Or maybe it is being out in the air that puts the baby to sleep and the quiet hush of the world.

Take a Drive- Place your baby in their carseat and head out for a drive. It doesn’t matter where you go, most of the time your baby falls asleep before you get to that designation, especially if they know you want them awake.  If not do your business and after drive home slowly to see if that doesn’t do the trick.

Feed baby- Giving your baby a full belly can definitely help them sleep. What’s the one thing you do after you get full from a meal? Most people want to take a nap, this works the same way for your baby. Sometimes a baby can’t sleep just because they are hungry, give them something to eat/drink and see if that helps.

10  Safe Place- Only you know where your baby sleeps best, just because you want to put him/her in their brand new crib doesn’t mean that your baby will. If you have already started your baby in a playpen, blanket on the floor, sleeping on you or with you in bed that is where they’ll want to sleep. Place them there until they fall asleep and then very carefully place them where you want them.

Here are a few more ideas on how to get your baby to sleep. Got any other ideas?

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