There are four things that have done wonders for my baby's sleep schedule! Once I realized how important sleep is to new parents, I knew I needed to share the knowledge I've gained to hopefully help other new parents! So, here’s a list and some thoughts on why these products are ones I would buy again and again!
So, like most new parents, one of my biggest fear is SIDS, so we were very adamant on him sleeping on his back but I was so scared of him spitting up and choking that I knew I wanted him at an angle. My friend Ashley just had a baby a year before I did and she told me she used this
for her baby to sleep on! I loved the idea (she ended up buying me one when she found out I was pregnant). The pillow isn’t just a U shape like the commonly known boppy’s, instead the center is filled in forming a sort of chair/bed thing. It keeps him elevated enough that his drool, and more often spit up, just runs out of his mouth.
When we first brought Xavier home I didn’t plan to swaddle, mostly because I thought it seemed like a baby straight jacket. I thought the boppy would be just enough night to keep him feeling swaddled without actually being swaddled. Once Xavier was probably two weeks old we were both so tired of him waking up every two hours on the dot that we started trying new things. After doing some research and discovering they have a reflex that actually wakes them up, swaddling was the first thing we tried and it was amazing. He automatically started sleeping three to four hours! Now I know that doesn’t seem like much but when you’re an exhausted parent, one more hour can do wonders. We started out using the halo swaddles since those were the brand we had from the hospital and baby shower, but once he was about two and a half months he was getting too long for it. We looked for bigger sizes but none would still wrap around him the swaddleme size large and it has been just as amazing ever since we bought it. He is now almost four months old and sleeps in an 8 hour stretch then for another 4-6. (And the only reason it’s only 8 hours is because I wake him up to eat when my husband leaves for work) I couldn’t find the exact pattern pictured above but here is the link to a similar one!
The last product I wholeheartedly recommend is the project nursery sound machine. This was a gift from my parents before Xavier was born and it’s been a go to sound machine since day one! We use it all throughout the night as well as during naps. The battery life is amazing. We started out using the heartbeat sound, which worked to sooth him but not necessarily keep him asleep longer. During a birthing class someone gave us soothing tips for the baby and one was actually to shush in their ear... as loud as they were crying. To me it just seemed so harsh and loud to be shushing in a newborns ear as loud as they were crying! But it worked! So after days of just shushing him to sleep I remembered there was a sound on the sound machine that was white noise, close enough! Since figuring that out we have always played it when he goes to sleep, down for naps, or even when he is crying uncontrollably. Works every time without a doubt.
Last thing that has increased his and our sleep time is routine! Of course it is hard to have a routine for a three month old who eats, sleeps, and cries whenever he desires, but we do what we can. Since my husband gets up at 4am for work we have always been in bed relatively early. By that I mean very early, like 7pm early. So for that reason Xavier has always gone to bed at that time as well! We start the routine at 6:30 by playing lullaby’s on the sound machine, then, even if he ate at 5, we will still give him another small bottle at 6:30 to let him know bedtime is near. Then we change his diaper, swaddle him and either hold him for a little while or lay him in the crib. Then we put on his speaker on white noise to relax him and he almost always falls asleep on his own by 7. Even if it’s the weekend he is still in bed by 7. No matter what time we are in bed, his bed time is very consistent. While of course there are nights he isn’t in bed right at 7 we try not to let the time vary too much simply because babies love consistency. It gives them comfort when they recognize certain cues, it helps them relax knowing that for once, they know what is happening next.
Now all of these things may not work for every baby the same or maybe none at all! But these are just a few things we have found work best for us!
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