Everything you need for restful baby sleep...well there's no magic wand, but it's most things you need.
It's the first thing everyone asks when they see you, how's the baby sleeping?...whether you're an experienced mum or it's you're first time, we all find those first few months hard. But it's ok, here are our top tips for how to get baby to sleep.
1. Lead by example - your baby will take their cue from you. I know it's easier said than done, but try to relax, be calm, and talk softly. If you're stressed and rushing and your heart is racing baby will feel it.
2. Learn the signs - if you've been to NCT cor other parenting classes you'll have learnt about the visual cues that babies often provide to let you know they're sleepy. This can be anything from obvious yawning to less obvious rubbing their eyes. Learn your baby's cues and respond to them.
3. Follow safe sleep advice - the Lullaby Trust sets out guidelines for ensuring your baby will be safe in their sleeping environment. This is important for you to feel comfortable in following number 4 and 5.
4. Walk away - After a month or two you should be able to lay baby in their bed while they're still awake and then walk away, leaving them to fall asleep on their own. I don't know about you, but I find it very difficult to fall asleep while someone is talking to me or moving me around. Let baby drift off to sleep on their own. It may not work the first, second, or even fifth time you try it but it is worth trying again.
5. Don't rush in - this is a big one. When you put your baby down it's likely that they will make some noise, babies make noise. If you've followed safe sleep advice and you can see that baby is safe then you've no reason to panic or to rush in. A cry of pain is very different to a grumble, or a shout of frustration. A cry of pain is the only one you should always rush in for. For anything else, use your judgement but give baby the space to fall asleep. You don't have to leave baby crying, but you can go to them, comfort them and then put them back down in a way which is calm and not exciting.