Happy new year!
Are you planning on making any resolutions with your parenting in 2015? If you're anything like millions of other parents across the world, you might be planning on getting a little more sleep this year, right? If that's the case, then perhaps it's time to make some new year's sleep resolutions. Here's some tips to help you get started.
Don't worry about it
Ok, so you're not getting much sleep and that's pretty rubbish, but try not to get too hung up on it. Sleep IS important, but the ways in which you deal with lack of it will help you no end in your quest to get more. Start by accepting your newborn baby's sleeping patterns. Newborns are not supposed to sleep through the night because they are designed to have small tummies (to suit their small bodies) that need filling up regularly. That is why they will wake up, and there really is little you can do about it. If you spend all your energies trying to get your newborn to sleep for longer than four hours, your're likely to get yourself worked up about it all! Read up on our tips on coping with newborn sleep habits here.
Get real about sleeping through
You might be interested to know that 'sleeping through the night' is actually defined by five hours continuous sleep. That's coming from the sleep experts. So before you compare whether or not your baby is sleeping through in contrast to your friend's baby, think about what they deem to be sleeping 'through'. It's often not as long as you think! Read more on the truth about sleeping through the night here.
Get clued up on sleep cues
We can't stress it enough. Sleep breeds sleep. Good daytime sleep helps to promote good night time sleep, so if your little one is not napping well in the day, there's a good chance they are not sleeping well at night either. Watch your baby for sleep cues through the day, and act on them. Typical sleep cues include:
- rubbing eyes
- refusal to look at you
If you act on the sleep cues when they appear, you lessen the risk of baby becoming over tired and difficult to settle.
Sort your routine
Often a poor or non existent bedtime routine can play havoc on sleeping habits. How does yours look? If you think it could do with some tweaking, now's the time to do it. A good bedtime routine can work wonders for sleep!
Know how much they need
If you know how much sleep your baby needs, on average, it can help you to make the adjustments that are needed. You might also be surprised to see that they are getting enough...
It's no secret that babies need more sleep than we do, but it helps to have an idea of roughly how much they need so that you can address any issues you feel they have. For a quick guide to sleep patterns, see this post.
Sort your own sleeping habits
It's often all too easy to blame tiredness on the kids- and we're not saying that they aren't tiring, and early mornings/ night wakings don't take their toll. But sometimes it might pay to take a look at our own sleeping habits. If we're going to bed late then there's a good chance that waking in the night with the baby is going to be hard. If you can, take a nap or rest during the day when your little one is sleeping. If not, a few early nights might just be the best new year's resolution you can make.
Have you made any new year's sleep resolutions? We'd love to hear them!