Getting a baby on a night time schedule can be a hard thing to accomplish, but it is possible! Trust me, I was lucky and I got my now 15 month old son on a schedule pretty early on. The sooner you do it, the better!
Most babies start as early as just a few months old. You will start to recognize patterns among your baby when it comes to their eating and sleeping schedules. If you follow that you can easily get into a routine and stick with it.
So where to even begin? Here are 5 great tips for you to follow so you can find a routine that works best for you and your baby.
1. Start off Slow and Work Your Way Up
You don’t want to start as soon as your newborn comes home from the hospital. Start off after a few months when you start to realize when your baby is tired at night and stick with that.
2. Log Baby’s Sleep
Start Logging when your baby goes to sleep each night and that will help you set a schedule. By logging their sleep, this will help you notice patterns in their sleeping schedule and you will know when to put your baby down to sleep.
3. Start a Routine and Stick With It
All parents are different, but for me I have a routine that I follow each night.
By 7:30 p.m, I prepare for my son’s nightly routine and he knows when it is that time. Every other night, he gets his nighttime bath and that helps calm him down and puts him in that “sleep mode”. The nights where he does not get a bath, I usually start to calm him down by putting away toys, reading and getting him into his pajamas.
4. Put them down while they are still awake
Waking a sleeping baby is never fun so by putting your child to sleep as they are still awake is ideal. Now we know most babies will not fall asleep right away. For me, I start off by giving my son his bottle when he is not in his crib yet and after a few minutes of him drinking his milk, I carry him into his room with his bottle and lay him down. By the time he is done, he is usually asleep. Works like a charm! (Hopefully it can for you too.)
5. Setting the scene
You want to make sure their room to be nice and cozy. Keep the bedroom at the right temperature between 65 and 70 degrees. Block out any light that might come in or else this might distract them and keep them awake. If you need light, buy a night light that isn’t too bright yet you can still see.
Every night will not be perfect so be prepared to have those occasional nights where he or she just might not want to sleep right away. Rule of thumb, just stay consistent. You will eventually discover your own schedule that will work for you and your baby.