Getting your baby to sleep or nap is not only a restful time for your little one but also for you.
However, putting your baby down to nap or helping your baby stay asleep through the night can feel like mission impossible at times. It is even tougher in those first few weeks or months after their birth.
Besides, when it comes to getting your baby to fall asleep, there’s no one-size-fits-all technique for achieving this feat. What works for your baby may differ from that of other babies.
One of the best ways to lessen the stress of getting your baby to sleep is to set your baby’s sleep schedule. Understand which parts of her sleep routine are in your hands — and which aren’t.
Despite the tussle of being able to get your little angel to sleep, the best and most loving part is finally watching that sweet and innocent face asleep.
Nonetheless, it’s not just enough to get your baby to sleep. It’s important to create a safe sleep environment that changes with your child’s age and developmental stage.
That’s because it’s not uncommon for a baby to die suddenly or unexpectedly during sleep. This is mostly as a result of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) or accidental deaths from suffocation or strangulation – resulting from a baby’s sleeping position.
Nevertheless, these are some recommended tips that can help create a safe sleep environment for your baby. So, whether your baby sleeps in a cot close to you, a crib, a car seat, or shares your bed – these tips can make your baby’s sleep as safe as possible.
1. Babies below a year should sleep on their backs for all sleep times—for naps and at night.
It is commonly known that babies who sleep on their backs are much less likely to die of SIDS than babies who sleep on their stomachs or sides.
However, some parents worry that babies are more at risk of choking when they sleep on their backs. On the contrary, the baby’s airway anatomy and the gag reflex will prevent such from happening. Plus, babies who have gastroesophageal reflux (GERD) are also advised to sleep on their backs.
On the other hand, the risk of allowing a baby to sleep on the side position may allow the baby to roll more easily onto the stomach.
When put to sleep, some babies will roll onto their stomachs. In case such happens, try to change the position to the back. However, if your baby is comfortable rolling both ways (back to tummy, tummy to back), then no need to worry. Just be sure that there are no blankets, pillows, stuffed toys, or bumper pads around your baby so that your baby does not roll into any of those items, which could cause blockage of airflow.
If your baby falls asleep in a car seat, stroller, swing, infant carrier, or sling, you should move him or her to a firm sleep surface on his or her back as soon as possible.
2. Put your baby to sleep on a firm surface
Your baby should sleep on firm surfaces like a firm mattress. It is one of the safest places for your baby to sleep.
Placing babies to sleep on a soft surface, like a couch, is more like to lead to sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) or other sleep-related causes of infant death.
3. Keep your baby out of your bed
While it is good to share a room with your baby, it may be a bad idea to share a bed with your baby.
Although it’s hard to tear away and not want to cuddle with your little one, it could be risky to do so for some reasons.
For instance, if you unknowingly fall asleep in the process, you could mistakenly roll onto your baby or the blankets could fall on the baby’s face.
To be on a safe side, provide your baby with his/her own sleep space.
4. Keep your baby’s head uncovered during sleep
It’s much safer for your baby without soft bedding items around them. Avoid such soft items like pillows, quilts, duvets – blankets are safer. Soft toys that are likely to end up over a baby’s head should be kept away.
More so, tuck the sheets firmly, or fitted snugly so that they don’t come loose. Loose sheets can cover and suffocate.
5. A crib is safer
While it may seem okay to make the crib warm and comfy for your baby, you should avoid putting anything soft or unnecessary extra into the crib. Such item includes soft bedding, blankets, or stuffed toys.
You may think these items are protective measures for your little one but they can be hazardous. For instance, a loosely kept blanket lying on a baby’s crib can strangle or suffocate a baby while they toss on the bed.
6. Transfer your baby to a toddler bed once they outgrow their crib
It is very common for toddlers to try to climb out of their crib once they know they are capable of doing so.
To be on a safe side, make a transition from their crib to a toddler bed for them.
Asides that, you should also keep the entire room toddle proof and remove any unnecessary toys – and other items. Also, cover electrical outlets.
With all being said, if you put these tips into use, your baby should be able to snooze without you being worried while you get your beauty sleep.