Expect frequent stirring at night. Babies often wriggle, squirm and twitch in their sleep. They can be noisy, too. Sometimes fussing or crying is simply a sign of settling down. Unless you suspect that your baby is hungry or uncomfortable, it’s OK to wait a few minutes to see what happens.
Keep nighttime care low-key. When your baby needs care or feeding during the night, use dim lights, a soft voice and calm movements. This will tell your baby that it’s time to sleep — not play.
Respect your baby’s preferences. If your baby is a night owl or an early bird, you might want to adjust routines and schedules based on these natural patterns.
Keeping it in perspective
Some babies sleep for long stretches at night right from the start, only waking for feedings. Others have trouble lulling themselves back to sleep. Take as much time as you need to understand your baby’s schedule and ways of communicating.
If you’re frustrated with your baby’s sleeping habits — especially if your baby still needs attention several times during the night by age 6 months — ask your baby’s doctor for suggestions.
Remember, getting your baby to sleep through the night isn’t a measure of your parental skills. It’s simply a goal you’re working toward. The result will be a good night’s sleep for everyone.
For links to great books on developing healthy sleep habits for your baby, go to the next page.
Article Courtesy of The Mayo Clinic