Helping Your Baby To Sleep
Some babies sleep much more than others. Some sleep for long periods, others in short bursts. Some soon sleep through the night, while some don’t for a long time.
Your baby will have their own pattern of waking and sleeping, and it’s unlikely to be the same as other babies you know.
It’s also unlikely to fit in with your need for sleep. Try to sleep when your baby sleeps.
If you’re breastfeeding, in the early weeks your baby is likely to doze off for short periods during a feed. Carry on feeding until you think your baby has finished or until they’re fully asleep. This is a good opportunity to try to get a bit of rest yourself.
If you’re not sleeping at the same time as your baby, don’t worry about keeping the house silent while they sleep. It’s good to get your baby used to sleeping through a certain amount of noise.
Routines For A Happy Baby
When you bring a newborn home, life becomes a blur. Your baby might have her days and nights reversed, need to eat every and nap in fits and starts. Your life might be just as chaotic — sleep when you can, eat when you remember, shower with some luck. But here’s a tip: Babies thrive on routines. They give rhythm and predictability to a baby’s day, so they’re very reassuring. “Imagine how confusing a baby’s world could be,” says Jodi Mindell, Ph.D., author of Sleeping Through the Night. “Routines give them a scaffolding, a structure, and their days don’t seem so random.” And that means that you, the parents, can start to thrive when you have a plan in place, too.
Simply beginning a bedtime ritual, for instance, can lower your anxiety, because you know you’re working toward closure to the day. Predictable naptimes give you a break, so you don’t have to be “on” all the time. But while routines can help parents feel in control, sometimes it’s hard to know when and how to institute them. It’s next to impossible to put a newborn on a nap schedule, and for the first few months, babies need to nurse on demand, so a mealtime routine won’t work. When the time is right, the four routines on the following pages will bring baby a sense of security and you a sense of peace.
What Is A Newborn Feeding Schedule
Because breast milk is so easy to digest, most breastfed babies eat more often than those on formula, usually between eight and 12 times a day. Frequently that works out to a feeding every one-and-a-half to two hours, usually around the clock for the first few weeks.
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Gradually Implement A Pattern Or Mini Routine In Your Day
eat. sleep. poop.
is pretty much what one thinks when you think of a pattern for a newborn and honestly it is pretty much as simple as that.
Basically getting your baby into any simple pattern like this, and repeating this pattern throughout the day can be the start of any newborn routine.
If you havent heard of the E.A.S.Y. routine, most famously from the book, The Baby Whisperer, this can be a good place to start. If youre not down to read or dont have the time to read the book , there is so much information on the EASY routine on Youtube/Google, just give it a search!
What Is The Easy Baby Routine
Getting a newborn into any kind of routine may sound difficult, especially as new mothers are told to feed on demand, but the EASY baby routine for newborns simply means following a set order each day: Eat, Activity, Sleep, You-time.
How often you have to repeat the sequence in the EASY baby routine will depend on how long your baby takes to eat and sleep and no two babies are the same!
Thats it. Of course, each day will be a bit different, but this EASY baby routine is so simple that youll be able to cope with it, even during those first few weeks when your brain feels like cotton wool and sleep is a distant memory.
The important thing is not to get stressed out if your baby is suddenly having longer gaps between feeds or sleeping less. As long as you follow the correct order for the EASY baby routine throughout the day eat, activity, sleep, you your baby will grow and, just as importantly, you will still feel as if you have a bit of you-time. Even if it is just a bit.
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What Is The Easy Method
The EASY method is a baby routine with a dedicated order for eating, playtime, and sleep, as well as time for the mother or caregiver to have to themselves. This method was developed by Tracy Hogg, author of the book Secrets of the Baby Whisperer.
When you follow the EASY method, you never feed baby on demand. Instead, you guide baby through their daily routine in a specific order:
Learn more about the EASY method from Bumps to Bundles & Giggles to Tumbles:
Every baby is different, so every baby will take different amounts of time to eat and sleep. And often, baby’s eating and sleep amounts will change as they grow. Don’t worry if baby seems like they’re sleeping less, or if there are longer gaps between feeds.
The exact times of day, eating amounts, and sleeping amounts don’t matter in this method, as long as you always follow the EASY order for when baby should eat and sleep in sequence. If you follow the steps, baby will still grow and thrive— and you’ll reclaim at least some valuable time for yourself. Now, let’s go through each of the steps of the EASY routine in sequence.
When Should I Put My Newborn On A Routine
Renowned experts like British maternity nurse and parenting expert, Gina Ford who has authored popular books on parenting, among them being them being a book on the secrets to establishing a newborn routine, offers a routine that begins a week after birth. Other parenting experts like Tracy Hogg, Author of Baby Whisperer , offer a loose routine that starts at birth.
Whichever approach you choose, put the interests of the baby first. This means following a schedule while taking the pediatricians advice seriously and following your own gut feeling/common sense when determining what is best for your baby. With that said, heres how to begin and
maintain a healthy daily routine for a newborn baby.
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A Newborn Routine That Works Every Time
Ready to organize your familys daily routines so you can enjoy your life without the stress?Family Routines Reboot can help!
If youve been going around a tired mom like a chicken with your head cut off, heres a good sample newborn routine for you. I think itll go a long way in helping you survive the newborn phase.
Id like to start off by saying that I feed my baby when he is hungry. I love routine and think theyre great, and we work towards a routine each day.
But even if its off schedule, I feed my babies when they are hungry. In case you are a troll. Or a routine hater. Or about to send me hate mail.
I just wanted to tell you.
How To Clear Up Day And Night Confusion:
- During the day when baby is awake and feeding, open windows, turn on lights, and keep things very bright
- At night, 8:00 pm and later, do all feeding, hugging, cuddling, diaper changing, in very dim or dark conditions
- After feeding your baby during the day, attempt to keep them awake for at least a few minutes by singing, cooing, playing, and bonding
- If your baby seems fully awake in the middle of the night, try turning on very bright lights which will cause baby to shut their eyes
- Dont allow more time than 3 hours between feedings during the day, even if they are still sleeping. Wake them up and feed them again if they continue sleeping. You dont want a 5 hour stretch to happen during the day, you want it to happen at night
- At night, feed them whenever they wake up and are hungry, but let them determine how frequent that is
- At night, avoid stimulating, playing, cooing, singing, or any other behaviors that will encourage baby to stay awake
- Work on your swaddling with these helpful tips.
At this point your baby is getting the hang of the outside world and you are getting the hang of this period.
If baby is napping quite long stretches during the day, then saving his fussiness for night. this could be day/night confusion.
I have had a few babies who would sleep well all day for naps and then would have a two hour stretch at night where they were fussy and not able to be consoled.
This was day night confusion.
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Reasons Youve Got A Whiny Baby
Ready to organize your familys daily routines so you can enjoy your life without the stress?Family Routines Reboot can help!
Got a whiny baby on your hands? Dont worry, there are only a few reasons babies get fussy, irritable, whiny and out of sorts. Read on for solutions!
When a baby is sweet and precious and cooing and sleeping its like the best thing ever.
They smell good.
Just looking at them releases happy hormones.
But when they are whiny and fussing and irritable and not sleeping Life Is Hard.
Since they cant really tell us whats going on, it can be tricky. Luckily, if we have a few things working for us then its Much Easier to figure out why baby is whiny.
Lets dive in.
Snuggle And Rock Him To Sleep
If you have a rocking chair like this in your house, use it to rock your newborn baby to sleep.
The rocking motion from the chair is a simple reminder of his time in mamas belly and can help ease him into a comfortable sleep with little effort on your part.
This right here played a huge role in our lives when my kids were still establishing their respective routines. I remembered putting them in here after I snuggled with them. As soon as it stopped, I moved them to the bassinet.
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When Will Baby Drop Naps
Just when you think youve got the whole nap routine down, here comes a curveball: After age 6 months, and again at around age 1, your baby will most likely drop one of his naps from his daily schedule. The exact timing for dropping a nap varies from baby to baby, but generally speaking, when your baby is ready to move from three naps to two or from two naps to one, its because hes ready.
Babies drop naps as they age, and parents would be wise to adapt their schedules to make sure theyre getting enough nighttime sleep. Somewhere between the ages of 3 and 4, your toddler will give up naps entirely. It may seem like an inconceivable loss: Without that afternoon nap, how will you have any time to yourself? The good news is that when your child is ready to give up naptime, bedtime tends to become easier. If your toddler is running at full steam all day, by evening hell usually be tired enough to drop off to dreamland without much of a battle.
From the What to Expect editorial team and Heidi Murkoff, author of What to Expect When Youre Expecting. What to Expect follows strict reporting guidelines and uses only credible sources, such as peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions and highly respected health organizations. Learn how we keep our content accurate and up-to-date by reading our medical review and editorial policy.
How Much Should I Formula Feed My Baby
Most healthy formula-fed newborns take 2 or 3 ounces of formula per feeding, and eat every 3 or 4 hours. By one month of age, most have increased on their own to about 4 ounces every 4 hours. By six months, the amount at each feeding has increased to 6 or 8 ounces, but the frequency has dropped to 4 or 5 times a day.
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How Much And How Often To Feed Infant Formula
You can start by offering your baby 1 to 2 ounces of infant formula every 2 to 3 hours in the first days of life if your baby is only getting infant formula and no breast milk. Give your baby more if he or she is showing signs of hunger. Most infant formula-fed newborns will feed 8 to 12 times in 24 hours.
How To Stop Cluster Feeding At Night
Aint no mama want to be up every hour at night. The good news is you dont have to be.
Even if you are feeding every hour through the night, you can shift that and begin getting longer stretches at night.
Whats the only way to stop cluster feeding at night?
Make sure baby is getting as much milk as they can throughout the day.
Dont let baby snack while nursing. 10 minute feeds throughout the day mean baby will be up all night because baby is hungry and needs milk.
When you start giving baby full feeds throughout the day and baby settles into a predictable routine then theyll sleep longer stretches at night.
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Feed At Regular Intervals
Plan to feed during the day at a set interval, every 2-3 hours, depending on your babys preference up to this point.
If your baby is showing signs of hunger before its time, try to distract or play with them to stall feeding them for a few minutes until the designated time.
Of course, if your baby is crying due to hunger, you should absolutely feed them even if its not quite the scheduled time.
And remember feeding at regular intervals also includes
Feed Your Baby After Waking Up
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With a newborn, dont base your activities by the clock, but rather on a general flow to your day. One of the best ways to establish this rhythm is to feed your baby after waking up.
In Secrets of the Baby Whisperer, Tracy Hogg talks about the E-A-S-Y routine, which stands for eat, awake, sleep, and you .
Once your baby is awake for the day, youd then feed him, followed by awake time. After hes been awake, then its back to sleep, followed by eating, and so forth.
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