7 Essential Newborn Sleep Tips

Newborn Sleep TipsAh, the newborn days. I miss my chunky little ones, but not the sleepless nights!

Helping your newborn sleep is one the hardest things for any new parent. It’s important to keep in mind that babies don’t know how to sleep. They have to learn.  

If you are having a hard time getting your newborn to sleep, these tips will help!

1. Swaddle – Early in life, children have a startle reflex that jolts them awake. This can happen as much as a few times an hour. You can reduce the effects of this reflex by putting them in a snug swaddle. It also helps them fall back asleep quickly when they are startled awake. Make sure to have a Zipadee-Zip on hand for when your little one starts to roll or break free from the swaddle!

2. White noise – In the womb, children experience a LOT of noises – from outside and within mom. Putting them in a silent room can actually make them feel uncomfortable. Use a white noise machine, some soft soothing music, or a fan to add some background noise.

3. Dreemfeed – Once you do this, you’ll wish you could every time! Newborns sleep well when they have full bellies. If your baby is asleep, but you know their usual feeding time is approaching, you can squeeze more shut-eye out of them by feeding while they sleep. The sucking motion is mostly reflex, so just offer your breast or a bottle and baby will feed while he or she snoozes.

4. Bedtime routine – Yes, even newborns can benefit from a bedtime routine. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be as elaborate as a toddler would require. When it comes time to sleep, turn off everything (except your white noise), including the lights. Do this 10-15 minutes before you expect them to nap. Then start speaking in hushed tones and hold them close. Whatever you do, do it the same every time.

5. Rushing in – When baby cries out during the night, pause just a moment to give him/her an opportunity to settle themselves. Don’t let a newborn cry for too long, because crying means they have a need to be met. But always see if they can soothe themselves first.

6. Drowsy, but awake – During the first couple months, it’s safe to do everything in your power to help your baby sleep – even if that means holding or rocking them to sleep. Around month three, however, you should put your baby down when he/she is drowsy but still awake so they begin to learn to fall asleep on their own.

7. Diaper changes – Changing a diaper is almost guaranteed to wake your baby up. Newborns don’t tinkle much, so give a diaper to check to see if it needs changing before you go through that process in the middle of the night. If you can, change diaper strategically so you don’t have to at night (but if baby needs it, don’t let them sit in their urine).

What worked to help your newborn sleep?

Written by Stephanie Parker from Sleepingbaby.com, inventors of the Zipadee-Zip

The motto for Sleeping Baby, makers of the Zipadee-Zip, is: "Inspiring Dreams One Night at A time," and that, in a nutshell, is how it all started…with one little dream that has since become the Parker family's reality. When Brett and Stephanie Parker's daughter, Charlotte, was born, the feeling that welled up inside of them was indescribable; they never realized until first looking into those baby blues of hers that they were even capable of that kind of love.

When it was time to transition baby from swaddling, the Parkers tried every sleep sack on the market and every swaddle weaning trick they could find for nearly two weeks and nothing worked to get baby Charlotte to fall and stay asleep.

Stephanie became determined to restore sleep and sanity to their household and set out to find a solution that would soothe Charlotte's startle reflex and provide her the cozy womb-like environment she loved so much but still give her the freedom to roll over and wiggle around in her crib safely. Out of sheer desperation and exhaustion, the Zipadee-Zip was born. The first Zipadee-Zip(R) Stephanie put together on her little sewing machine worked like magic!

To date tens of thousands of Zipadee-Zips have been sold and all from word-of-mouth marketing. It is so rewarding for the Parkers to see other parents and babies getting the sleep they both need and deserve!

Interested in writing a guest blog for Sleeping Baby? Send your topic idea to social@sleepingbaby.com.

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