Monday, July 20, 2009

Baby Sleep Help - Early Prep For Toddlerhood

------"Always kiss your children goodnight - even if they're already asleep." ~H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

You’re at your wits end, pulling out your hair, yawning all the time, and your eye lids feel the weight of the world. Instead of consistent sleep you are getting a couple of hours here and there because your baby cries for you throughout the night. You know you are not alone and you know this is all a part of parenting but what can you do to stop the interference of your sleep? How can you get your baby to sleep at night and through the night? 

Here is baby sleep help for you to put into action tonight, but it is important to remember that consistency is what will solidify your child’s nightly sleep pattern, and will be especially beneficial for you and your baby when they reach toddlerhood and preschooler years. Start early training for an independently sleeping toddler and preschooler by putting these tools into action.

A Solid, Warm, Cuddly Routine

As you may know by now babies feel more stable when they have can get idea of what to expect next, which is why throughout the day it is preferred for many things to be handled on a routine basis. Getting your baby to sleep at night and throughout the night is no different.

- Choose your baby’s bedtime and begin the routine no later than 45 minutes before hand. Adjust the time if you need to but there should not be a lot of time in between each piece of the routine. It should flow together one after the other.

- Calm, Cozy, quiet atmosphere. Turn the lights down and keep the noise down to a bare minimum.

- Consider a baby massage as opposed to a bath. It has health benefits, is less hassle, and much more relaxing to your baby and you. You can use this time to chat to your baby about the day and what exciting things they can expect tomorrow. Soft music and dim lights for a cozy atmosphere. No TV, no disruptions. All your attention should be focused on your baby.

- Consider taking your baby directly to his room after his bath or baby massage, put him in his bed, and read him a story and sing a song (a relaxing tune).
It is here that common mistakes are made that can start bad habits causing sleep interruptions and major toddler and preschooler sleep problems.

If you rock your baby to sleep at night you are starting a pattern in which you nor your baby will be able to break, and you will find within a short time your baby cannot sleep without being rocked and will wake up frequently as a toddler and preschooler unless you fix the problem. Do you have time as a parent and professional to undo things? Isn’t it better to simply not let bad habits start? Of course!

Skip the rocking altogether and replace it with a bedtime story and songs in his comfy cozy room. This doesn’t mean that you should never rock your baby. Rocking is enjoyed much by parent and child and of course is a wonderful time. You can rock with a story or songs during the day, morning, or early evening, well before bedtime. Just don’t let it become a bedtime ritual that will later come to haunt you.

Bedroom Enhancements

Your baby’s room should be ready in advance with a cozy, soft atmosphere.

- A very soft night light so baby is not alone in the dark and can see the lovely things around him in his room.

- My personal idea for a night light is a fish tank that your baby can see from his crib.
Baby Bedroom Secrets

- Soft music. If you can find something from his favorite baby show or cartoon, preferably soft, low key music.

- Leave your baby’s room door open when you leave the room and always tell him you love him and will check on him later.

Give him chances

Baby sleep help requires that you always give your baby a chance to fall asleep on his own. If he cries the minute you leave the room, give him a few minutes before you go rushing back in. Often times he will fall asleep on his own and this is good because it is preparing him for toddlerhood to be an independent sleeper which is what every parent wants! When you do enter his room adhere to the following:

- Do not talk to your baby

- Pat him on the back for a few seconds only (this is done to let your baby know that you are still around and have not completely left him)

- Leave the room again and continue this process as needed, each time leaving a two minute gap in between the time you re-enter the room.

Nine out of ten times your baby will fall asleep before you need to go in for the second time. When he doesn’t make sure he is okay with diaper wetness and that he is not ill. Otherwise, expect him to test your patience sometimes and it is then your responsibility to help him out and hold strong to the routine of the two minute gaps. No matter how dreaded it seems to listen to your baby cry for a few minutes, rest assured it will not hurt him and what you are dreading now is nothing to what you will dread a short time later when in toddlerhood.

If you begin doing this early, you will be doing yourself a huge favor and your baby. Toddler and preschooler sleep help is much more dreaded because your baby is older and can walk and talk, adding more complications to parents when their toddler has a tantrum at bedtime and won’t sleep through the night. Lack of sleep for you and your toddler massively disrupts many things including your child’s learning abilities in school and their behavior throughout the day. A child with solid sleeping habits is a better behaved child with a better attention span and is part of your child’s healthy lifestyle. Health Hazards stir Non-Sleeping Toddlers

Daytime Prep

There are things you can do during the day toward baby sleep help. These things will help with your baby sleeping through the night.
- Do not give foods that increase energy before bedtime.
- Your baby should have a nap daily.
- You should be supplying your baby a healthy diet, low in fatty foods.
- Limit television watching to half an hour a day. You can increase this to one hour when baby gets a bit older.
- Regular daily exercise appropriate for his age.

Put your baby on a sleep routine and stick to it on a nightly basis. Grow the routine to suit your child’s age as he grows into toddlerhood. Help your baby to feel comfortable and secure in his room alone at night by providing him a nightlight and some soft music and do your best to avoid starting bad habits toward future bedtimes. With this baby sleep help you will be able to get your baby situated into a nightly routine to help you both now and in the future, and will help you avoid toddlerhood bedtime battles.


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