Bedtime Routines

How to Establish a Bedtime Routine for Your Newborn Baby

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Having trouble sleeping as a newborn? Get your 0–3 month-old to follow a regular nighttime regimen by using these soothing advice and soft techniques to put an end to their crying.

Uploaded on:

20/2/2024

Last Reviewed:

10/4/2024

Reading Time:

6 min

Table of Contents

While those first few months with your newborn are filled with love and cuddles, sleep challenges can often steal the spotlight. But fear not, Parents! Setting up a consistent and calming bedtime routine can be the key to unlocking longer sleep stretches for you and your little one. 

✨ Remember, at this age, it's more about creating cues and associations than strict sleep training.✨

Why is the bedtime routine for a newborn important?

You should know that establishing a soothing bedtime routine early on has excellent benefits. Consistency helps your little bodies regulate sleep-wake cycles, allowing you to sleep longer. 

It also reduces nighttime confusion and creates positive associations with bedtime, making you less stressed and more rested. Click here and check the hours by age:  bedtimes by age 

“Following a bedtime routine is associated with a number of positive sleep outcomes, including an earlier bedtime, decreased sleep onset latency, reduced nighttime awakenings and increased sleep duration.” 
💡 National Institutes of Health

How many hours should a newborn sleep?

 Newborn sleep needs are a spectrum, not a strict schedule. Expect anywhere from 12 to 16 hours of sleep across the 24-hour clock. If your baby is 5 months old! Click here and check this out!  5 month old sleep schedule. Take a look at this chart:

Baby sleep chart

Newborn sleep cycles

There's an exciting reason your baby could seem erratic: sleep cycles! Babies sleep in significantly shorter spurts, typically lasting 40 to 50 minutes, compared to adults who sleep in longer, 40-50-minute cycles. 

Active sleep (REM sleep)

 Even though your baby's eyes may be closed during this stage, their brain is very active. They might even breathe erratically, twitch, and make strange faces. All of that crucial brain development takes place here.

Quiet sleep (NREM sleep)

This is when your child genuinely sleeps soundly, at the more profound, calmer stage. Their muscles relax, their breathing slow, and they may even have brief. 

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When is the right time for your baby to start a bedtime routine?

Around 3 months old, you and your child may be able to sleep through more excellent dreams if you establish a soft and regular bedtime routine. Recall that, at this point, creating favorable associations is more critical than rigorous sleep training.

How to create a bedtime routine for a newborn

While their little cooing and snuggling melt our hearts, getting them to sleep peacefully can seem like an Olympic sport. let's look at the first steps to creating an effective routine: To know more about routines, check this blog: morning routine for kids

1. Set a consistent bedtime for your newborn

Aiming for a consistent bedtime each night aids in your newborn's body's normal sleep-wake cycle development, even though they aren't yet able to tell time. Maintaining consistency is important, but it doesn't have to be minute-by-minute.

2. Create a calm environment

Dim the lights, turn off loud noises, and keep the temperature comfortable. This signals to your baby that it's time to wind down.

3.  Pre-bedtime activities

Incorporate relaxing pursuits like taking a warm bath, getting a soothing massage (try our Storybook app for guided meditations and peaceful stories), or listening to pleasant music. They foster favorable connotations with going to bed.

🛌 Include stories with a message. Look how!

4. Use a comfort object

As your baby sleeps, a familiar lovey or blanket can offer security and comfort.

5. Soft music or white noise

A calm ambiance can be produced, and domestic sounds can be muffled. Natural sounds or white noise generators might be helpful tools.

Discover bedtime routines tailored to your little one's specific age group!

Sample bedtime routine for newborns 

 Let's look at a practical example for your little one: 

  • Having a relaxing bath.
  • Get your little one comfy in fresh pajamas.
  • Unwind with some quiet cuddles.
  • Get cozy in a swaddle.
  • Place them in the crib
  • Drift off to sleep peacefully with some calming white noise.
  • Time to switch off the lights and say goodnight.

bedtime routine for newborns (0-3 months)

Common newborn's bedtime routine challenges

😭 Baby cries during the routine

Sometimes your baby may cry more than usual, 'It can be a bad sign.

  • Solution: if your baby cries more than usual, check the clothes and any discomfort he/she may feel in the body; remember to use creative resources to get your little one out of this little difficulty.

🕐 Challenges with timing

Finding the proper bedtime can be tricky, as some newborns may resist early and late routines.

  • Solution: Always be consistent with the routines you establish. Consider adjusting them gradually in 15-minute increments; you must be disciplined in this area; the routine will give your little one the best performance and health.

🌇 Day-night confusion

Sometimes an uncontrolled sleep disruption can cause your little one to sleep during the day more than at night.

  • Solution: Set clear bedtimes and, during daylight hours, have natural light inside the house. This point is essential, and they should avoid making the mistake of having this great confusion because it can have terrible consequences.

🤯Resisting the crib

 Due to bad habits or an inadequate crib, the baby tends to be rebellious at bedtime.

  • Solution: Is the crib secure and cozy? Is the space very bright, noisy, hot, or cold? Before going to bed, ensure the crib is cozy, the space is suitable to sleep, and your baby's basic requirements are covered.

Tips for a Successful Newborn Bedtime Routine

Sweeter dreams for you and your child may be unlocked by establishing a calm and regular sleep routine. Recall that, at this point, creating favorable associations is more critical than rigorous sleep training. Here are some crucial pointers to help you:

  • Start around 3 months old: This gives your baby's body time to develop natural sleep cycles.
  • Create a calm environment: Dim the lights, turn off loud noises, and keep the temperature comfortable.
  • Gentle massage: Include soothing stories or calming music (check out our App Storybook for more!).

✨ Remember: Every baby is unique. Be patient and flexible. These tips are a starting point; adjust them to find what works best.

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References

More Bedtime Routines