Sleep. It’s the five-letter word that New Jammies babies need a lot of and parents dream of having.
According to Stanford Children’s Health, newborns sleep about 8 to 9 hours in the day and about 8 hours at nighttime. With smaller stomachs than the rest of us, infants often wake about every three hours to eat. And while each baby is different, sleeping through the night for 6-8 hours without waking might not come until at least three months, as growth continues. Finding that ideal sleeping schedule can involve a little patience and plenty of trial and error.
OK, maybe a lot more than just a little patience.
When it comes to helping kids achieve an early healthy sleep schedule, Stanford Children’s Health suggests establishing routine at bedtime.
“Not all babies know how to put themselves to sleep. Most experts recommend allowing a baby to become sleepy in your arms, then placing him or her in the bed while still awake. This way the baby learns how to go to sleep on his own,” says the hospital, on its tips on newborn-sleep patterns at www.stanfordchildrens.org.
“When it is time for bed, many parents want to rock or breastfeed a baby to sleep. However, be sure that the baby does not fall asleep while eating or in your arms. This may become a pattern and the baby may begin to expect to be in your arms in order to fall asleep. When the baby briefly awakens during a sleep cycle, he or she may not be able to go back to sleep on his or her own.”
Stanford Children’s Health suggests playing soft music to create a calm routine as babies start to become sleepy.
“I like to sing Brandt a little song everynight about the Farm Animals hanging over his bed and let him snuggle his stuffed cow,” says New Jammies founder Nicole Ludlow. “After he falls asleep I remove the cow from the bed, since they are not supposed to have anything in there. It usually works, but not always of course.”
Colorado dad Jeff Rice remembers soothing music playing at bedtime as integral in helping his small children establish a sleep routine. It’s a tradition passed down from his own father.
“My dad played for us, I’d play guitar like ‘Puff the Magic Dragon,’ for my kids, and even my granddaughter will literally fall asleep on my lap while I play open mic,” Rice recalls. “Music is key. Anything soothing and harmonic like that is key.”
Indianapolis grandmother Charlene Smith said she always used a calming, lowered voice and had story time with her kids to create a consistent bedtime routine.
“Stories of the past always put them to sleep at a certain age. Reading to little ones is as rewarding to adults as to the kids. I remember many a night falling asleep right after they did,” she said.
The Birch family of Indiana, which includes a set of pre-teen triplets, recalls playing music from “Winnie the Pooh” videos to help soothe their three tired babies as they prepared for sleep. The Birch triplets’ parents also followed the advice of healthcare professionals in suggesting not putting their babies to bed with a bottle propped for feeding.
“This is a dangerous practice that can lead to ear infections and choking,” Stanford Children’s Health says.
The Birches also say they passed on any sugary juices and drinks before bedtime for their triplets to avoid the stimulant effect and for proper early dental care.
For more healthy sleep tips for babies and kids, visit http://www.stanfordchildrens.org.
Snap a photo of your cute sleepy baby, toddler or child wearing their favorite pair of New Jammies to enter our new Fall Photo Contest. One lucky winner will score a year of free pajamas (4 pair), featuring a brand-new pair every new season. Winners will pick from any style and size each season.
Enter online here at http://newjammies.com/blog/category/photo-contest with a fun photo of your favorite little guy or gal in New Jammies, and tell us why you love our pajamas. Online entries will be accepted through Oct. 14. One entry per contestant and contest, please. The New Jammies Fall Photo Contest winner will be published on our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/NewJammies.