Speak to any parent of young children and the first thing you will hear about is sleep. Babies disrupt sleep. In all this, we often fail to remember that the babies are struggling too. Their environment is new, they are growing by the hour, and they are – all too quickly- exposed to so many stimuli. While we often hear about how life begins the moment you’re out of the women, the 9 months of life inside the womb should not be forgotten.
Babies felt safe inside the womb, there were no visual stimuli, subdued sounds, voices, or warmth and they received all their nutrients without having to eat, drink or cry out. Additionally, they lack language skills, which are essential to communicate needs. One can buy 1.5 tog sleeping bag with legs online to provide them physical comfort, but there is more to child care.
Sleep – The Backbone Of Growth And Health
- Quality sleep is perhaps the most underestimated of all human needs. An adult requires 6-8 hours of sleep at night. This can vary according to the individual. It is also favourable to sleep through the night. This is because of how our body works and the circadian rhythm.
- Babies, on the other hand, sleep from 17 to 20, sometimes 22 hours a day. This is necessary for their growth. Human babies are not fully formed when they’re born and as such, they need a lot of care through their early years.
- Now, back to the circadian rhythm. Just like speech, crawling, or walking, babies develop their circadian rhythm over time. This can begin at various ages depending on the child and their genetics.
- Moreover, the younger they are, the faster they grow. This is often why ‘weeks’ are used to refer to their age when they’re young. They need energy and good rest to provide them energy to handle such rapid growth.
- Additionally, quality sleep is necessary so that the baby can grow their ability to learn languages, attention span, impulse control, and cognitive performance. Recent studies also show that sleep issues at an early age translate to a lack of social skills, health issues, and terrible quality of life as they grow.
- So the baby’s sleep is not only a matter of how it affects their parents, it is about building a strong foundation for the child’s future.
This covers the most important facts about sleep. With that stated, let’s move to the topic at hand. Let’s look at how you can develop a healthy sleep routine for your baby.
Sleep Associations And Sleep Hygiene
Sleep hygiene has to do with the routine that surrounds sleep. For children, especially younger than toddlers, sleep hygiene begins with associating certain things and actions with sleep.
It is the nature of the human brain to create patterns even where there is none. Because of this, if you do something repeatedly every time you put your baby to sleep, they will notice the pattern. This will, in turn, associate, said action to sleep in their minds. This is the essence of sleep hygiene and forming routines around sleep.
Changing And Dressing
Being with changing their diapers and dressing them up for the night. Experts recommend buying sleeping bags to help them fall asleep with safety and security. Be sure to buy the sleeping bag according to the room’s temperature and weather. For instance, Buy 1.5 Tog Sleeping Bag With Legs Online for temperatures ranging from 20 to 22 degrees Celsius. The material can be cotton and lightweight for that temperature.
Feeding The Baby
Once you’re done putting fresh diapers on them, put them in a sleeping bag and get ready to feed them. It is recommended to feed them right before bed. This way, they will not go to bed hungry. Infants have small stomachs and hence need to feed every 30 minutes or so. As they grow older, you can speak to your doctor and reduce feeding. When you feed them once or twice at night, try not to wake them so they are trained to sleep through the night at an early age.
Feeding During The Day
Try gently waking them up whenever you feed them throughout the day. Waking them during their day feeds and keeping them asleep during night feeds is a healthy way to regulate their circadian rhythm. As they grow into toddlerhood, this will be second nature to them. While you can Buy 1.5 Tog Sleeping Bag With Legs Online for them, don’t put them in it during the day.
To Rock Or Not To Rock?
Singing lullabies, gently rocking the baby, and patting their backs are all associated with infanthood and toddlerhood. In the last two or three decades, we’ve seen growing disapproval for this from many a parent. This leaves us wondering, is it healthy or not? Are we spoiling our children?
Well, you can relax. The world has yet to witness a 15, 20, 25-year-old, or even middle-aged person require lullabies to fall asleep. Much less rocking and patting their backs! No matter how much you ‘spoil’ them, so to speak, they will grow out of it. These actions are simply gentle ministrations provided to a young infant. Feel free to sing to them, pat them lightly, and cuddle them until they can sleep.
Pacify With A Pacifier
Give them a pacifier so they are comforted during their sleep. Breastfeeding is naturally comforting for babies. It finishes their hunger while simultaneously providing warmth and closeness to their mother. This is why pacifiers are comforting to babies. Though it may not be the same thing, it has positive associations for them.
While you can try all of these things, there is no guarantee that they will work. Always remember to not frustrate yourself and understand that your child may simply be different. Moreover, this lasts only for a short duration. Once they are 4 or 5 years old, or once they start school or preschool, their sleep will fall into a pattern automatically. So accept your child as they are and enjoy each stage of their life.