Today, I'm featuring Becca Campbell of Little Z's Sleep Consulting, who has penned a wonderful blog about how to set yourself and your baby up for the best sleep during those early newborn days. Read on for her excellent advice!
Congratulations! You are awaiting…or have already welcomed your sweet baby into this wide and wonderful world! That’s a tremendous accomplishment and I urge you to take pride in the work your body did these past nine months. You are incredible!
By now you probably realize your baby only does a few things. Sleeps, eats, poops…and sleeps…and eats…and poops. It’s a pretty simple daily routine yet can cause tremendous stress on new moms.
As a Pediatric Sleep Specialist, I like to guide new moms in what to expect…and what not to expect during your child’s first 0-12 weeks of life. I find it to be freeing and powerful when you know the basics around newborn sleep, so I am opening up to you now in hopes that these few foundational strategies will take some of the New Baby stress away.
- Tiny Baby, Tiny Clock. The birth day of your baby is quite an event! Typically your child will spend the majority of their first few days catching up from the exhausting journey into your arms. Once they begin to open up their eyes and explore the world using their senses, remember not to overload them. Up until 3 months old, your baby can really only handle about 45-60 minutes of awake time. Learn your baby’s cues (typically yawning at this stage) so you can time the next nap easily.
- All About Routines. From the beginning establish a solid bedtime routine (between 8-9pm). A bedtime routine helps cue your little one that it’s time for night now, and begins to teach their body the difference between day and night. Even though their circadian rhythm isn’t set until 6 weeks, every little bit you do to help is beneficial. An example of a bedtime routine would look like: bath, massage/lotion, diaper, pajamas, feed, into crib/bassinet.
- Relax! Remember to take time for you. Even if your newborn is only down for 30 minutes, use that time to lay down yourself. Every moment you can take to reenergize and refocus is key. Go easy on yourself, and again, praise all the hard work your body has done!
If you are a new mom (or a fourth-time mom!) with lots of questions about your baby’s sleep, I invite you to book a free 15 minute discovery call. I would love to hear your birth story, your baby’s story, and help get everyone on track. My ultimate goal and passion is to help families find peaceful sleep so they are all happy and healthy.