Babies sleeping through the night….the holy grail of parenting. It’s a subject that comes up almost daily for me. I have always advised parents that an infant less than 4 months does not have the developmental capacity to soothe themselves enough to sleep through the night. A recently published study proves me wrong! This study reveals babies can sleep through the night by 3 months of age. Sleeping through the night is defined as sleeping from 10pm to 6 am in this study. How can you get to that point?
Here are a few tips to help your little boo bear sleep from 10pm to 6 am.
1. Start preparing from the time you bring the baby home from the nursery. You want to have a consistent routine for bedtime. Some people advise bath, bottle and bed. Whatever the routine, do it every night.
2. Turn off the TV. Television has been shown to be a consistent problem in sleep disturbances in all age groups. Some researchers have found problems with brain development in infants who just hear television as a background noise. Just turn it off at least one hour before bedtime target.
3. Use music. Whether you sing or play music, sing the same songs every night before bedtime. Remember our consistent rule.
4. Put the infant in the bassinet or crib while drowsy, but not asleep. Imagine if you fell asleep in your bed but woke up on the kitchen table. Scary! If she falls asleep in your arms and wakes up in the crib…scary!
Getting your baby to sleep through the night is all about planning ahead and being consistent. You can do it! What I have recognized in my years of watching my patients grow up is babies who do not sleep well typically turn out to be brilliant.