Learn how to cope with some of the most common baby sleep problems.
We’re sure that you have seen quite a few baby sleep solutions floating around online and on social media.
While some of these may actually work and help your baby get to sleep, others are less based in evidence – though we will all try anything to get our babies to sleep!
At SnoozeShade, we are not only parents but have lots of access to great baby sleep experts. Here are a few tips and tricks to help you solve three of the most common baby sleep problems.
Problem 1: My Baby Will Only Go to Sleep If I Feed, Rock, Swing or Hold Them
Firstly, know that you are not alone. And if you are currently happy to soothe your baby to sleep, then that’s not a problem – very small babies do need help getting to sleep. That said, babies who depend on a 'sleep prop' to fall asleep tend to rely on that same prop when they wake in the night. This makes it harder for them to learn to fall asleep independently. That doesn't mean they won't learn eventually, but it could mean a few sleepless nights for you. If that's a problem, here are some things that you can do about it.
- Go cold turkey. Remove the sleep prop and encourage your baby to sleep without it. This is not easy but there are lots of articles out there than can advise on the best method for you.
- If your baby usually feeds to sleep, change your routine a little. Offer the feed earlier than you would normally and don't put her to bed directly afterwards.
- If your baby likes to be rocked or swung, you can wean her from this gently. Start by slowing down the action gradually until you are not moving at all. Each night, reduce the length of time that you rock or swing until your baby falls asleep without it.
- If your baby likes you to hold her, it might be an idea to enlist the help of someone else at bedtime. They may have sleep associations with you that could make it tricky for anyone else to put her to bed. Get your partner to take turns putting your baby to bed and they will learn that it doesn’t always need to be mummy when it comes to bedtime!
Problem 2: My Baby Will Only Fall Asleep In The Car Seat.
By now you will have heard the latest guidelines when it comes to babies sleeping in car seats. If not, you can read them here. If your baby does prefer to sleep in her car seat and refuses to sleep elsewhere, it is likely to be a movement issue. That means that she is used to being lulled to sleep by the motion of the car and that can be a tricky habit to break. It’s also worth noting that the snug position of the car seat is very comforting for babies, especially those with reflux. The best advice here is to gradually break the habit by reducing the length of time your baby is in the car seat and ensure that naps are taken at home in bed, or in the pram where she can lie flat. Use SnoozeShade to eliminate distractions.
Problem 3: My Baby Wants To Sleep With Me, In My Bed.
Again, if this is not a problem for you, then don't sweat it – many of us love co-sleeping. But if you want your bed back, there are ways that you can get it! Co-sleeping is not for everyone and if you do it, it's important to do it safely. So, how do you gently ease your baby out of your bed?
- If your baby is very young, use a Moses basket or bedside crib so that she is near to you but in her own sleeping space.
- Put your baby's cot alongside your own bed and each night gradually move it a little further away.
- Put a mattress down on the floor in your baby's room and sleep with her for a few nights until she is able to sleep alone.
- Work on day time naps - if your baby is able to sleep in her own room during the day, it will be easier to make the transition at night time too.
What are your current sleep problems?