When you became a parent, you want to know everything about How To Help The Baby Sleep Through The Night. Every year in the world are born 3,988,076 children, and parents are struggling with the sleeping pattern of their child.
As a mother, from the moment I held my daughter in my arms, I wanted to be informed about any subject related to her. All my attention, since that time, has been turned to her health and her well-being in total safety. They have been so many activities that my daughter involved in, day and night, that I started to learn for, all these things in detail, step by step, as much as I write these things for you. Sure, her sleep was one of the most important things and, I was worried a lot in the beginning, but I received some advice for the life and development of my child from his pediatrician and my sister.
During the daily hours, I was caring that she will get a good nap, but the night hours were significant for my baby’s sleep. Lack of sleep meant a lot of physical and mental fatigue for her and me, too.
I am going to break down some of the main issues related to baby sleep, to know how to help our babies for having healthy and secure sleep during the night.
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The Importance and development of baby sleep
Every baby spends most of their time in a sleep state during the first year of his life. Knowing that fact, every parent wants to learn how to help the baby sleep through the night. The quality of a baby’s sleep impacts the maturation and development of the brain. Sleep is very significant for the overall functioning and future cognitive, psychomotor, and temperament development. It is essential to human life and involves both physiologic and behavioral processes. The baby sleep environment impacts the overall quality of baby development and safety. Baby crib, mattress, bedding, and other nursery items play a significant role in baby sleep. You can read our Best tips for baby crib Furniture Set for more information about cribs, or The Best Baby Tips Sleeps Ever to learn more about how to use your baby nursery items safely.
Sleep is treated as a behavior, though it is primarily a biological process. The child learns how to sleep through practice. Every time that a baby sleep has the opportunity to learn how to fall asleep and wake up by himself. Experts say that the ideal bedtime for an infant fall between 6 pm and 8 pm, with the classic wake-up time tumble-down between 6 am and 7 am.
Every child is diverse, and each child’s sleep becomes regular at different ages within a particular range. Every parent should spend time to know her baby. As we see in the table, during the first year of life, infants sleep not less than 14 hours, but my daughter during the first year of life slept on average from 8- 9 hours per night and in total not more than 12 hours.
Below are some of the most frequent pediatrician recommendations that I have followed to help my daughter for healthier and better sleep. Some of them are valid still now, and the others have been useful in the first weeks and months of my daughter’s life.
- Caring for your baby at night: Feeding the baby during the night is a need and essential. Babies grow fast in the early weeks and months of their lives and have small stomachs. For this reason, they need to feed many times to meet their needs.
- Getting some rest: It’s significant to make sure to create the right environment to help your baby and you to get rest as much as possible. Keep the room fairly dark. My daughter likes the dark during sleep, and I try to keep the room dark, also during her nap time.
- Keep your baby close to you: Recommendations call for infants to share their parents’ bedroom for at least the first six months and, optimally, for the first year of life, based on the latest evidence. Place your baby to sleep by the side of your bed. In this way, you can hear your baby and respond to her needs before she cries, and you can catch her easily. My daughter slept in her room by herself for the first time when she was 18 months old.
- Try not to stimulate your baby too much: At an early age, mainly the first six months, offer her a feed as soon as she starts walking. Talk to her softly and avoid changing her nappy or clothes unless necessary. I have continued to breastfeed my daughter at night, even at the age of six months.
- Your baby’s routine can be any combination of regular bedtime activities. It is better to play lively games during the day and quiet games in the evening. In this way, your baby will be quieter right before bedtime but gets tired from the day’s activities. Play new games with your baby every day, in this way she will be more interesting to spend another day full of energy. My daughter gets a good sleep after played new games.
- Keep activities the same and in the same order, night after night. Make every activity in serenity and peaceful, especially toward the end of the routine. Many babies enjoy bathing right before bedtime, which calms them down. Save your baby’s favorite activity for last, and do it in her bedroom. In this way, this will help the baby look forward to bedtime and associate her sleep space with things she likes to do.
My daughter likes very much listening to music before sleep, I was listening to classical music during pregnancy and, since the first week of her life, I have practiced classical music with her. I also have practiced reading books and singing lullabies to her before sleeping time.
- Make nighttime conditions in your baby’s bedroom consistent. If she wakes up in the middle of the night, the sounds and lights in the room should be the same as when she fell asleep.
The Benefits of A Healthy Sleep
A good sleep at babies is the key to good growth. The Baby’s brain needs sleep to restore resources that are used up during the day. Some areas of your baby’s brain are even more active while they sleep well and have a positive impact, especially on the baby’s Learning, Mood, and Growth.
Most of the baby sleep benefits in Learning are
- mature brains and consolidated memories;
- higher cognitive scores are more creative;
- can concentrate on tasks for longer;
- have better problem-solving abilities;
- are better able to make positive decisions;
- are more able to learn and remember new things.
Mood benefits have an “easier” temperament;
- being more approachable;
- less distractible, and more adaptable;
- have more energy during the day;
- create and maintain good relations with others
Growth: are at a lower risk of being overweight at the age of 3 years old.
Recommendations for a safe sleep
According to AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics) and the other International Pediatric organizations, find below some of the key and mandatory recommendations to implement to have the safest sleep in our baby. Implementation of these recommendations minimizes and avoids the risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome).
- Place the baby on her back on a firm sleep surface like a crib or bassinet with a tight-fitting sheet.
- Avoid the use of soft bedding, including crib bumpers, blankets, pillows, and soft toys. The crib should be bare.
- Share a bedroom with parents, but not the same sleeping surface, preferably until the baby turns one year old but at least for the first six months. Room-sharing decreases the risk of SIDS by as much as fifty percent.
- Avoid baby’s exposure to smoke, alcohol, and illicit drugs.
- Skin-to-skin care is recommended, regardless of feeding or delivery method, immediately following birth for at least an hour as soon as the mother is medically stable and awake, according to the report.
- Breastfeeding is recommended as adding protection against SIDS. After feeding, the AAP encourages parents to move the baby to his or her separate sleeping space, preferably a crib or bassinet in the parents’ bedroom.
Symptoms of the lack of sleep
If our babies don’t get enough sleep every night, they can have negative consequences. Find below some of the signs and symptoms of lack of sleep at an infant age.
Some of the physical symptoms:
- Baby has difficulty to wake up in the morning;
- fall asleep right away he wakes up;
- feeling tired;
- preferring to lie down during the day;
- crying often, and has a lack of appetite.
- reduced immune system function, so they may be sick more often.
Some of the cognitive (mental) symptoms:
- lacking interest,
- motivation and attention during daily activities;
- emotional symptoms;
- moodiness and irritability;
- increased impulsivity;
- Stressful throughout the day.
Reasons for lack of sleep
From the first weeks of his life, our baby can face different problems that cause a lack of sleep. Most of them are biological and come as a result of our baby’s development. Every parent should keep calm and act cautiously to solve the problems that endanger his baby’s sleep.
I’m going to briefly down some of the problems I have faced with my daughter. They can impact the quality of baby sleep.
Abdominal Cramps or gaseous colic: My baby had abdominal cramps in her first four months of life, and they were typical of the evening, before bedtime, but we also encountered them during daily hours, especially when the weather was rainy. I used to calm my daughter by holding her over my chest (my heartbeats calmed her very much), or I put my baby on my knees, and I massage very lightly on her back. Chamomile tea is another tranquilizer that I have used.
Abdominal pain from the addition of gases: The increase of gases is associated with both ingestions during feeding, (especially in abductees) and production during food processing. Make sure your baby takes out the gases after her feeding.
Decrease of immunity after vaccination: A few days after each inoculation injection, my baby had a runny nose. I cleaned her nostrils with physiological water and a nasal aspirator. We have to care that the inflammation of nasal tissues does not lead to various otorhinolaryngology infections.
Hope this post help you learn how to help the baby sleep through the night
Becoming a parent is a very particular time. Getting to know your new baby and learning how to care for her needs can be one of the most rewarding experiences in your life. Respond to your baby’s needs as your baby needs. Children grow up so fast during the first year that no day resembles another. Every month your baby goes through a new stage of development, and this includes bedtime, too. You are the guide for his development. I suggest always getting information before bringing your baby to life, as you will face different situations together with her. There are many books and guides about baby sleeping, you can find here some of the best guides for your baby sleeping.
I hope you feel more secure after reading this post on how to help the baby sleep through the night.
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Enjoy the growth of your child!