So you’re a new parent and just got your bundle of joy back home. You are quite eager to begin your journey as a kind and loving parent. But then you realize that your baby does not always want to sleep at the same time you do. In fact, it may just appear that they fight sleep. Once they go to sleep, they don’t stay that way for too long. There are four reasons why this happens. Let’s take a look:
- Sleep window
The 1st thing which you need to understand is that they have sleep windows. This is the time when they sleep quietly and with no complaints. They are tired at this point and know that it’s time for them to sleep. But if you miss this window, they are going to be overtired and will resist sleep later. The only possible remedy to this is to move their bedtime completely. If they are fighting sleep, try the earlier bedtime, it tends to work better.
- Excessive sleep
The next reason why they may not be sleeping is because they have already slept too much even though they weren’t tired. This is something that toddlers are likely to do though, not newborns. In order to fix this problem, you will need to shift the bedtime of the baby back a little.
- Separation anxiety
Another reason why they may not be sleeping enough is because they are suffering from separation anxiety and simply miss you. This is most likely to happen in the case of older babies. If this is the problem, all you need to do is be there to reassure them every now and then.
- Personality and temperament
The last reason is that it could be due to their temperament and personality. Social and perceptive babies tend to fight sleep simply because they enjoy being awake and find it more interesting. They don’t like missing out on any fun. What you should do here is keep playing with them till they tire out and go to sleep.
Sleep regression is something that a baby may start facing till 4 months. They don’t really have a proper sleep cycle formed at the time like us adults. We can go between light and deep sleep but babies can’t. At 4 months, their brain starts maturing and their sleep pattern starts becoming like adults. The problem here is if your baby is waking up from light sleep, getting them back to sleep is going to very tough. The changes which happen at this time are more or less permanent and that is a good thing. You do want them to mature properly right? Do not hesitate to call on your other family members for help here since you shouldn’t deprive yourself of sufficient sleep.
Here are a few suggestions to help keep your baby asleep:
This can sometimes help your baby to fall asleep just like a pacifier does. It makes them feel secure, safe and warm. If they like their binkie, give it to them, it will help them feel content.
If you have tried rocking your baby to sleep and it worked, keep doing it. Don’t change position each time until they are fast asleep. One more thing you could consider is using a cradle or a swing. This motion is soothing for them and will certainly induce sleep.
- Dream feed
Then there’s the dream feed. Here, all your baby needs to sleep is a bottle. Do not pick them or wake them up though. Just put a bottle in their mouth and wait for them to complete drinking. This will help them sleep longer for sure.
Now that you know where to start, being sleep training for your baby right away. One thing to remember is to try your best to wait till your baby is drowsy before putting them to bed. This will help ensure they fall asleep the moment their head hits the mattress.