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June 14th, 2024
By Faith McNamara

Sleep Scheduling: Experts’ Advice on How to Get Your Baby on Track

Everyone needs their beauty sleep, especially babies and toddlers. To maintain the health of your little ones you must establish a sleep schedule - sleep is crucial to their development.

At each growth stage, a baby needs a different amount of sleep so parents must understand their baby’s sleep patterns to make the perfect schedule for them. We’ve spoken with a Sleep Well Trainer and a Sleep Coach, so you can make an informed decision for your baby.

What are the different stages of sleep?

Newborns sleep around 2-4 hours at any given time as they wake up frequently for feeding. Unfortunately, this means a few sleepless nights, especially for breast-feeding mums.

As babies grow older, they tend to sleep longer in the night and take fewer naps during the day. This aligns more with how the rest of us sleep and eventually, as time moves forward they will sleep throughout the night, though this means they are more likely to wake up early in the morning with lots of energy.

At six weeks old, babies begin to develop their circadian rhythm, which helps them to regulate their sleep cycle. Parents and Nannies need to set a schedule so that this rhythm can be formed correctly and the baby can sleep better.

However, it is important to note that sleep requirements differ from baby to baby. Parents should closely watch their baby's sleep patterns to ensure they are getting enough sleep.

How to create a routine for bedtime

Establishing a bedtime routine is the perfect way to help babies start to form a healthy sleep pattern. Soothing before bed can unconsciously trick their brain and body into feeling tired. Steps such as taking a bath, reading a story and singing a lullaby are great first steps in a routine. With every routine, repetition and consistency are key so it helps babies to recognise when it’s time to sleep.

A baby should be put in their crib when they are drowsy but still awake as it helps them to develop their own self-soothing skills. This allows them to form healthy independent sleep habits so that they can drift off on their own. To know when the baby is tired, parents and Nannies are advised to look for signs such as rubbing their eyes or tugging at their ears.

Making sure your baby is ready for sleep is paramount to a good schedule. This means cutting out anything that could be distracting or overstimulating to them. Things such as bright light, loud noises and too much physical activity before bed should be avoided. A calm, tranquil environment should be created to help soothe a baby to sleep.

Like every part of parenting, setting up a sleep schedule takes time. Parents need to remain calm, patient and consistent. Sleep troubles will only last for a few months. Before you know it, they will grow and sleep better.

Insights from Two Sleep Experts

H5 Gill - Little Ones Course Trainer

We recently spoke with Gill, a Sleep Well Course Trainer for Little Ones. Gill's expertise lies in assisting Nannies in setting effective sleep schedules for babies and infants under their care.

With years of experience in the field, Gill provided enlightening thoughts and insights on the significance of sleep for little ones. She also shared methods to establish a consistent and beneficial sleep routine.

Gill emphasised the crucial role of sleep in a baby's overall development and well-being. She explained how quality sleep is vital for their physical growth, cognitive development, emotional regulation, and general health. Understanding the importance of providing babies with the best possible sleep environment, Gill outlined the significance of a consistent sleep routine.

During our discussion, Gill shared practical tips and strategies for establishing a consistent sleep routine for babies. She highlighted the importance of creating a soothing and calm sleep environment, such as maintaining a comfortable temperature, minimising noise and distractions, and ensuring a safe sleeping space.

Gill also emphasised the significance of establishing consistent bedtime and naptime routines. This includes relaxing activities like a warm bath, gentle lullabies, or a cosy story before falling asleep.

She also advised new parents to remain confident in their abilities to nurture their child's development and refrain from succumbing to societal pressures. Parents can ensure that their child receives the best care and attention, tailored to their needs.

Ellanee Wilson - Private Sleep Coach

We also spoke with Ellanee Wilson, an expert Sleep Coach. Throughout our discussion, she generously shared her wealth of knowledge and provided invaluable insights into sleep schedules. Ellanee's expertise extends to a wide range of inquiries and concerns related to general sleep schedule concepts.

What sets Ellanee apart is her specialisation in working closely with parents. She understands the unique challenges and dynamics that come with parenting and the impact it has on the sleep patterns of both children and adults.

With her extensive experience and deep understanding of the subject matter, she can offer personalised guidance that is tailored to the specific needs of each family she works with. Whether it's establishing healthy sleep routines for infants, addressing sleep difficulties in toddlers, or providing strategies for better sleep habits for parents, Ellanee approaches her work with compassion, patience, and a commitment to finding solutions that work best for each family.

She recognises that there is no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to sleep. Therefore, she takes the time to truly understand the unique circumstances and preferences of the families she assists.

By combining her expertise, evidence-based practices, and a deep understanding of individual family dynamics, Ellanee empowers parents to make informed decisions and create optimal sleep environments for themselves and their children. Her personalised guidance helps families improve their sleep quality and enhances their overall well-being and quality of life.

Both of these highly knowledgeable professionals, with their extensive expertise in the field of baby sleep, offered detailed and comprehensive advice on how to foster healthy sleep habits for infants.

Their insights are invaluable not only to childcare professionals who are entrusted with the care of babies but also to new families who are navigating the joys and challenges of parenthood.

To delve deeper into the precise answers and recommendations provided by these experts, we encourage you to visit our social media channels. There, you can find detailed posts, articles, or videos that capture their insights and offer a comprehensive understanding of the strategies they suggest.

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