Those first few weeks with a new baby in the house – who didn’t come with a manual – can be very tough. Between the endless feeding and lack of sleep, things can really start to feel like they are caving in.
There is light at the end of the tunnel, however. By employing some of my little tips and tricks you can start to establish healthy sleep habits in those early weeks that you will see the benefit of in the months and years ahead.
I can’t tell you how wonderful swaddling is and it works. It helps a new baby feel secure in their new environment. It also protects them from being woken by their startle reflex and also their hands – which they have no control over! You will find lots of videos on YouTube that show you how to swaddle – here is one – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I6BdAtlV79g You can also purchase swaddling blankets in the likes of Mothercare. Please ensure you dress your baby appropriately for the bed to avoid overheating.
Put your baby to sleep on their backs only. Ensure that their sleep environment is a safe, secure flat surface only. Cots, Moses baskets & cribs are recommended. No loose blankets, toys, teddy’s or cot bumpers are to be placed in this sleeping environment. Bed-sharing is not recommended.
This will help them get their nutritional needs during the day and so help limit their requirement for feeding through the night. This does take time to establish however with a good feeding structure through the day you will see the rewards at night.
Never allow a baby to sleep through a feed. You will only see the impact of this through the night where they try to make up on the nutritional needs that they have missed. Always wake a baby during the day to feed.
This will help avoid creating sleep associations between feeding and sleep. Practice a feed, play, sleep cycle.
If you find this has come to your door simply give your baby a little chance to settle themselves. Often by giving your baby a little space they will have settled in minutes. Study their cry’s and get to know the difference between each one.
Give yourself a break and remind yourself that you are amazing! Those first few weeks can be very tough but it will come together.
Firstly I am Mom to 3 wonderfully crazy kids: Quinn, Kate & Patrick – they alone keep me super busy. I am a wife to Liam, my amazing and super patient husband and we live just outside Naas, Co Kildare but I am originally from Cavan.
I love to run – ask anyone, I am mostly seen in my running gear!
I thrive on being super organised, I love routine & adore schedules.
I know I hate the sound of me too!
I am one of those people who simply cannot get enough – 8 hours sometimes doesn’t cut it! So when we started to have children the fact that we may never sleep again absolutely freaked me out. I knew that my sanity and my marriage would not survive years and years of sleepless nights.
I have endlessly researched and read almost everything I could to help my family achieve our sleep goals. However, that did not prepare me for the sleep-deprived mess that I was to become. Quinn nearly broke me. I both physically and mentally did not cope with sleep deprivation. However, I gained control over the situation & never looked back.
My dream is to help as many families as possible have as many good night’s sleep as possible. Did I mention that all of my brood sleep 12 hours at night – even the 8-year-old?! Empowering families to get the sleep that both parents and little ones need is my passion. When I overhear Moms chatting in the playground about how little sleep they have had for the last few years I want to pop over to them with a coffee and ask them how I can help.
How am I qualified to advise you on your child’s sleep?
Really good question! Prior to becoming Mom, I graduated from the University of Limerick with a BSc in Business (Account & Law). I hold an MBS in Strategic Management & Planning from the Smurfit Business School (UCD) and also a Post Grad Dip in Event Management and PR. Last but not least I am a Family Sleep Institute Certified Child Sleep Consultant (www.familysleepinstitute.com).
Let me tell you that sleep is not a luxury. Sleep is a necessity. Like food, shelter and water – we need sleep to function and survive. Children need it even more than we do. They need it to grow, they need it to function, they need it to develop. Establishing good sleep habits will only benefit your family.
Get in touch with Babogue today and the Gift of Sleep could be as little as two weeks away!