Riding The Storm Out

As parents, there are some things you simply can’t avoid. Your baby is going to cause you a few sleepless nights. Even after you’ve gone through the checklist of all of baby’s needs and done everything you know how to do, feeding her, burping her, changing her, making sure she’s warm and comfy, she still might not go to sleep. And whether she’s up crying and fussing, or happy and gurgling, it means you won’t get to sleep either. On nights like these, sometimes the only thing you can do is ride the storm out and remind yourself that it won’t last forever.

Babies don’t have the well-defined sense of nighttime and daytime that adults do. This is partly because babies have legitimate needs that genuinely can’t wait until morning, and partly because their sleep cycles simply differ from yours. Unfortunately, there really is no foolproof way to make a baby sleep at night. Babies sleep when they get tired, and wake when they are ready.

If your little one is often awake at night, there are a few things you can do to encourage him to change his sleep schedule. First, when taking care of his nighttime needs, leave the lights off or keep them dim. Make sure that you feed, rock, and change him somewhere that doesn’t leave him surrounded by things to look at.

Make sure to stay calm when taking care of baby at night. This is often a frustrating time for parents. There’s nothing like a little sleep deprivation to drive even the best parent over the edge, but getting frustrated with baby won’t help her go to sleep. If anything, it will make it harder for her to relax. Make sure you get as much rest as you can during the day. If you go into the night knowing that you’ll have to get up, and make sure to get some rest during the day, it’s easier to stay relaxed so you can focus on baby’s needs. And treat this as a team effort. It’s important for baby to bond with both parents, and one of the best ways to do that is to share the nighttime parenting responsibilities. So, relax, work together, and remember that before you know it, these days will be past and baby will sleep through the night.