Help Your Baby Sleep Sans Tears
Set a schedule
The consistency of a pattern is very comforting to babies and little ones. Creating patterns in your day will help baby understand when sleep time is coming. Even if you’re a mom that doesn’t live by a schedule, you can create consistency for baby by sticking to a pattern.
Start a routine
Much like that pattern of how each day will go, babies respond well to routines. Before nap or bedtime, create a routine that you can follow each and every day. Whether its feeding baby, reading to him, bathing him or having some tummy time before nap or bedtime, baby will become accustomed to his routine and understand that sleep time will soon follow.
Set the stage for sleep
Encourage sleep with the follow tips:
- Before nap or bedtime, change baby into a fresh diaper and comfortable clothes
- Swaddle newborns
- Dim the lights/turn on a nightlight
- Use a musical toy with lights
- Read stories
- Give baby a massage
- Rock baby
- Sing to baby
- Use shushing sounds
Put baby to bed
Experts suggest not allowing baby to fall asleep in your arms, as this will discourage him from learning to soothe himself to sleep. Once you spend some time lulling baby, put him down in his crib or bassinet groggy but not completely asleep. Giving baby the tools to fall asleep on his own will become a priceless tool (for you!) once he's too big to rock to sleep every night.
If baby cries when you put him down or leave the room, give him a minute or two to try to settle himself. If he’s still upset, go back into the room and whisper soothing words like, “Mommy’s here.” Resist the urge to pick him up. Rub his belly or back, sing or “shush” him until he’s quiet, then leave the room again. This may take a little while for baby to get used to, but soon he’ll understand that Mommy isn’t gone forever when she leaves the room.