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How to Establish a Bedtime Routine

Follow these steps to turn your baby into a good sleeper.

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-A consistent routine at night is an important step toward turning your child into a good sleeper. Start creating a routine with a set bedtime 4 months when your baby is getting most of her sleep at night and he's beginning to establish a more set day and night cycle. Some babies have a hard time winding down, so start switching gears about 30 minutes before bedtime. Turn off the TV if it's on even if it's just providing background noise instead, focusing on more relaxing pursuits like reading or listening to soothing music in a quiet room. Like most adults, children need a calm space for sleep. Choose a few activities that will signal to your child that sleep is approaching. Many parents rely on the 3 B's (Bath, Books and Bottle or Breast). Some parents find that their babies sleep better after a light massage or when soft music is playing. Through trial and error, you'll figure out what works best for you and your child. Whatever you choose, be sure to put your baby to bed when she's drowsy but not fully asleep. Babies need to learn to soothe themselves to sleep so they're not always relying on you. Once you created routines, stick with it. If you're constantly changing your child's sleep times and activities leading up to it, you'll have difficulty getting her to nap and sleep through the night. Aside from special occasions like holidays and vacations, be sure your child stays on schedule and you follow your daily routine. Creating a healthy sleep habits now will help you and your child in the long run.