Hush Little Baby

Getting a baby to fall asleep and stay asleep are two slightly different things.   For most new parents, a baby’s sleep cycle can seem puzzling.  Aren’t babies supposed to just eat and sleep for hours on end?  Sometimes it is just not that easy.  In fact, newborns tend to awaken easily because they are typically in a light state of sleep called “active sleep”.  This means that your baby can sometimes be easily awakened at the slightest noise or glimmer of light.  So when your little one does not seem to want to cooperate, rather than throwing your hands up in despair, here are a few tips for ensuring that your baby falls asleep and stays in a deeper state of sleep!

– Make sure your baby is really asleep before putting him or her down.  It generally takes 25 minutes for your baby to complete his or her active sleep cycle before truly falling asleep.  Otherwise your baby may awaken if moved during this time.

– Increase your baby’s intake of DHA (Docosahexaenoic acid), an omega-3 fatty acid found in fish oil and other dietary sources.  This can improve your baby’s deep sleep cycle and extend the amount of time he or she spends in quiet sleep.

–  Boost your baby’s meal before your own bedtime.  This will help your baby sleep longer, and help you get some sleep in the process!

–  Attempt safe swaddling to improve your baby’s sleeping.  The goal is to avoid having the baby move his or her arms and awakening.

By trying out these simple tips, you may alleviate your sense of worry and even reduce your own stress level so that you can get some much needed sleep yourself!

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