Persistent sleep problems that make it hard for your baby (and you!) to get the rest you both need could be a sign of a bigger issue. Parents may think that elevating the crib mattress to relieve symptoms of reflux is safe, but it is not, nor are any types of sleep positioners or wedges in a crib. Furthermore, however safe the crib may be, any new parent can attest to the fact that all babies will end up sleeping in many other places.
There are lots of things you can do now to help support your baby to sleep at their biological best. This will also give you the rest and emotional support that is so needed in your infant’s early years. Make sure their sleep space is dark and quiet, with the exception of white noise sleep aids to encourage relaxation. The ideal room temperature for your baby to sleep in sits between 16-20 degrees celsius. Layer their sleepwear as appropriate, or use baby sleeping bags in varying togs to help regulate their temperature as they rest. Regular dummy use is the best way to use a dummy. This means offering your baby a dummy each time you put them down for a sleep, day or night. You and your baby will also find it easier to have a regular sleep routine. If the dummy falls out of your baby’s mouth during sleep, you don’t need to put it back in. Before trying any sleep-inducing program, you be the judge. Run these schemes through your inner sensitivity before trying them on your baby, especially if they involve leaving your baby alone to cry. If you're looking for a compassionate, effective and evidence-based approach to sleep or just advice on one thing like sleep training
then a baby sleep specialist will be able to help you.
There Is A Light On The Horizon
Many parents notice sleep problems begin around 4 months, when babies become more mobile and their sleep patterns change, and again around 8 or 9 months as separation anxiety increases. Follow safe sleep guidelines. At least until your baby is 12 months old, be sure to lay your baby in the cot on their back. Make sure the cot is free of loose bedding, blankets, pillows, bumper pads and toys to help lower the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and prevent suffocation. Avoid falling asleep with your baby in a chair or on the sofa. Your infant’s sleep may be disrupted by outside commotions like bright lights or daddy’s snoring—or by inside discomforts like teething, hunger, stuffy nose, and constipation. And when she’s roused, her discomfort or desires (like her love of social contact) may cause her to awaken completely and call for her favorite buddy and playmate - you! Babies are noisy sleepers, prone to grunting, wheezing, whining and even crying in their sleep. Most nocturnal noises are nothing to worry about; even the occasional cry or shout doesn't mean you should rush to your baby. If you're travelling, you will just need to prepare in advance and make the necessary adjustments. Bring a portable bed like a bassinet or a playpen. You will also need a room where you can do the nighttime routine and put your baby down for the night. Sleep consultants support hundreds of families every year, assisting with things such as ferber method
using gentle, tailored methods.
Your infant’s brain needs to mature to allow for longer sleep cycles. When your infant has less sleep cycles there is less potential to wake during the night. Typically, this happens around 9-12 months. An infant’s digestive system needs to have developed to support longer periods of night sleep and their calories and nutritional needs must be met during the day. We tend to see this happening between 9 -18 months. A regular bedtime ritual creates a sense of comfort that can be especially helpful during trying sleep periods for you and your baby, such as when you're sleep training (which you can try between 4 and 6 months old) or when your baby is going through a sleep regression. By the first birthday about 70 percent of parents have moved their baby to another room. When’s the best time for this move? I recommend doing it by six to seven months. After that, infants become much more tuned in to the particulars of their surroundings and may have trouble with the change. In warmer weather, you can dress baby in a sleeveless and legless onesies for bed, or just a nappy and singlet. For cooler weather, a full suit will keep baby warm. Having a baby is a steep learning curve and aspects such as sleep regression
come along and shake things up just when you're not expecting them.