How to Create a Bedtime Routine
When the sun sets, incorporate these simple tips into your bedtime routine, and both you and Baby will catch more snooze time.
Set your baby up to be a star snoozer -- and get more sleep yourself -- by following these steps at the end of the day.
- Don't Delay Even though your newborn isn't sleeping through the night, establishing a bedtime routine now will create a comforting rhythm that will pay off for you both later.
- Limit Distractions Infants need to unwind before bed just like grown-ups, so switch gears 30 minutes beforehand. Head up to her room and look at books together.
- Hatch a Habit Choose quiet activities, such as giving your baby a bath, feeding her, and singing her a lullaby, to do each night in the same order before putting her down.
- Wrap Her Up Some babies like being swaddled before bed, but when Baby can roll over on her own (by about 4 months) stop swaddling and use a wearable blanket.
- Stick With It Put your sweetie to bed drowsy, but awake, so she learns to fall asleep on her own. And aim for the same time every night. A schedule you can live with is key!
- Make feeding a first or second step in your routine, so Baby doesn't rely on it to fall asleep.
- If you use a white-noise machine, keep the volume low to protect Baby's hearing.
- When the sniffles or a trip interfere, get back on track when you can.
Originally published in the May 2015 issue of American Baby magazine.