Your challenge: Baby seems to be a pro at sleeping-until somewhere around 2 o'clock in the morning. Desperate for some shut-eye of your own, you want to help them get back to sleep, but also know the importance of providing a safe sleep space.
The solution: For such little people, babies can have big opinions of their own regarding everything from whether they like to be swaddled to pacifiers. It may take some trial and errors, but it is possible to help baby sleep better without compromising on their safety.
Say hello to your new roommate: For the first months of baby's life, experts agree it's best to keep them in your room but not in your bed to reduce the risk of SIDS. Fortunately for today's parents, there are plenty of options designs to make baby safe + comfortable whatever the space available, whether it's an attached co-sleeper, a bassinet or rocking sleeper. Also key: Always put newborns to sleep on their backs without loose pillows, blankets or toys in the sleeping space.
Help establish healthy sleep habits: It may seem like the list of what you shouldn't do to help a newborn baby sleep is long. But, don't get too intimidated: There are plenty of non-feeding ways to help soothe a baby-and then teach them how to soothe themselves. For starters, although pacifiers can get bad raps, researchers have found they are greatly associated with reducing the risk of SIDS. Some gentle music, a mounted crib soother and dimly lit room can also signal it's time to get some shut-eye.
A swaddle can promote security + sleep: It's a healthy part of development, but for the first few months of baby's life, the Moro reflex can also pose a problem when they have finally drifted off to sleep. To prevent baby from waking up startled by their own flailing arms, a swaddle can help keep them feeling warm and secure, just like the cozy womb where they spent the last nine months. Experts just recommend ditching the swaddle by the time baby learns to roll on their own.
Make sure everyone knows safe sleep habits: You know Back is Best when it comes to putting baby to sleep, but what about Grandma? Sleep recommendations have changed in the past few decades, which makes it all the more important to give anyone who will be responsible for putting baby to sleep a refresher on the latest guidelines.
Pro tip: The best way to remember safe sleep guidelines? The ABCs: Alone, on their Back and in a Crib away from Clutter.
You've got this.
Motherly + Kids2 provides information of a general nature and is designed for educational purposes only. This site does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
Return to Go2Guides for Sleep & Soothe