How to tire out a newborn

How to get your baby to sleep

Getting your baby to sleep can be tough, but there are plenty of ways to encourage healthy sleep habits. Open up the blinds and let plenty of light in during the day, then keep things dark when it's time for bed. Put your baby to bed when they're drowsy, but haven't fallen asleep quite yet. When your baby wakes up in the night, wait a few moments to see if they'll settle and fall back asleep on their own. If they stay awake, keep things calm and quiet while you feed them or change their diaper.

It can be frustrating – not to mention exhausting – when your baby just won't go to sleep or stay asleep. Those first few weeks with a newborn are bound to be chaotic, since newborns have day/night confusion and need to eat every few hours around the clock. They may snooze through the afternoon and then be up all hours of the night, even after you've fed and changed them.

But once your baby is a few months old, you can start to coax them into a more normal sleep routine. Whether you're figuring out the best way to get your baby to settle in for the night or trying to get them to go down easy after a midnight feeding, these tips, drawn from a number of leading baby sleep experts, can help.

Use light strategically

Light is a powerful biological signal – daylight wakes us up, while darkness triggers the brain to release melatonin, a key sleep hormone. Keep your baby's days bright and their nights dark to help them figure out when it's time to sleep.

  • During the day, allow plenty of sunlight into the house or take your baby outside. Put your baby down for daytime naps in a well-lit room (unless they have trouble falling asleep at nap time).
  • To induce nighttime sleepiness, consider installing dimmers on the lights in your baby's room, and also in other rooms where you both spend lots of time. Lower the lights in the evening (up to two hours before bedtime) to set the mood.
  • It's fine to use a night light in your baby's room, but choose a small, dim one that stays cool to the touch. (And don't plug it in near bedding or drapes.)
  • If your child wakes up during the night, don't turn on the lights or take them into a brightly lit room. The shift from dark to light tells their brain it's go time. Instead, soothe them back to sleep in their dark bedroom.
  • If early morning sunlight prompts your child to wake too early, or if they have trouble napping in the afternoon, consider putting up blackout curtains.

Put your baby to bed when they're drowsy, not asleep

This is a tall order, but master the timing and both you and your baby will rest easier. Babies who drift off on their own are more likely to learn to soothe themselves to sleep.

Put your baby to bed as they're quieting down, just before they nod off. When your baby is about 6 to 8 weeks old, try creating a sleepiness scale from 1 to 10 based on how they behave when they're getting tired (1 being wide awake, and 10 out cold). Then wait until your baby hits 7 or 8 to put them down to sleep.

Wait a moment before going to your baby

If you jump at every squeak heard over the baby monitor, you're encouraging your baby to wake up more often. Wait a few minutes to give them time to settle back to sleep on their own. If they don't, and it sounds like they're waking up, try to reach them before they escalate into a full-blown howl. Stepping in before a meltdown means you'll catch them before they're too worked up to fall back asleep.

Either way, it's okay to turn down the volume on your baby monitor a bit. Set the volume so you'll be alerted when they're distressed but won't hear every gurgle.

Try not to stimulate your baby

Many babies are easily stimulated. Just meeting your baby's gaze can engage their attention and signal it's playtime.

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Try not to engage too much with your baby when they wake up – this could inadvertently encourage them to snap out of their sleep zone. The more you interact with your baby during the night, the more they're motivated to wake up.

Keep it low-key instead. If you go to your baby at night, don't talk excitedly. Soothe them back to sleep with a quiet voice and gentle touch.

Only change their diaper when necessary

Resist the urge to change your baby every time they wake up – they don't always need it, and you'll just jostle them awake. Instead, put your baby in a high-quality nighttime diaper at bedtime, and apply diaper-rash cream as a preventative measure.

When they wake up, sniff to see if their diaper is soiled and change only if there's poop.

Wait until they're ready for sleep training

Following these tips helps establish healthy sleep habits, and you can start to work on these as early as the first month of your baby's life. But as desperate as you may be for some solid shut-eye, your baby won't be ready for formal sleep training until they're 4 to 6 months old. By then they'll not only be ready to sleep for longer stretches, but they'll also be much more receptive to the techniques you use.

Brace yourself for sleep regressions

If your baby starts waking up during the night again, don't panic: It's probably just a temporary hiccup. Babies and toddlers often have minor sleep regressions around major developmental milestones or changes in routine, like travel, illness, or a new sibling.

Many parents notice sleep problems begin around 4 months, when babies become more mobile and their sleep patterns change, and again around 8 or 9 months as separation anxiety increases.

To get through it, go back to basics: Stick to a predictable, consistent schedule during the day and a soothing bedtime routine in the evening. If your baby is old enough, choose a sleep training strategy and try it. If you don't see improvement, reassess and try a new approach.

If you find yourself in need of more help, check out Baby Sleep 101Opens a new window, BabyCenter's virtual, on-demand course led by a pediatric sleep doctor. 

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Top 10 Baby Sleep Tips That'll Help Baby Sleep Longer Stretches

Sitting on the couch with my swollen legs propped up on pillows, I looked over at the stack of newborn baby sleep books on the coffee table. Over the course of several hours, I devoured each book, skimming through the pages.

I was determined to learn how to make a newborn sleep.

Then…my son was born.

And….he didn’t sleep.

Imagine that. A baby not sleeping the way a book says 🙂

I fumbled through it the first six weeks. I was so unsure of myself.

Thankfully, we pulled ourselves together, armed ourselves with some key infant sleep facts, developed a plan and implemented it.

We stuck with it, and at 4 months old, our son was sleeping 11-12 hours at night and naps extended to 1.5 to 2 hours. Woohoo! We’ve experienced sleep regression, sleeping on the go, sleeping through teething…and so much more!

post contains affiliate links for your convenience.

Getting your newborn to sleep longer stretches at night is not a perfect process. There is an ebb and flow. It’s all about trying new things and finding something that works well for your baby.

We used these tips for our daughter, and she slept so well during the newborn phase, my husband and I enjoyed a generous amount of time hanging out.

Here’s the best part: When your baby sleeps better, you will notice a more patient, more tolerant, more engaging baby after a good night’s rest or quality nap.

1. Swaddle

From birth to about age four to five months, babies innately possess a startle reflex, in which they feel as if they are falling. The sensation of falling causes jerking movements, and the baby will incidentally wake up.

Keeping a tight swaddle prevents babies from startling themselves awake, helping the newborn baby sleep both better and longer. I like to think of the baby as ‘snug as a bug in a rug,’ and I used to tell my son this every time I’d swaddle him snugly.

I love the HALO SleepSack Cotton Swaddle

 but the Woombie is amazing too!

Both help keep the baby swaddled snugly yet safely.

Even if your baby seems to dislike the swaddle I would keep trying. If you think about how it was for them in the womb, it is a very familiar feeling for a baby to enjoy a snugness around them.

We stopped swaddling once our son could regularly get his arms out and roll over. We continued to use the Halo Sleep Swaddle and just swaddled around his torso, leaving his arms out.

2. Dreamfeed.

The dreamfeed is the feeding given to the baby right before you (mom or dad) go to bed, and it helps prevent the baby from waking up just after you finally drift off to sleep.

Isn’t this the pinnacle of sleep deprivation?

You just fall asleep and the baby wakes up.

The dreamfeed can help your newborn baby sleep for longer while you sleep. We used it until about age 4 months. After than time, it can start to disrupt sleep and create more nighttime waking.

Here’s an example of a newborn sleep schedule that we loosely used during the first 3-12 weeks.

  • 7 am – Wake up, eat, play
  • 8 am – Nap
  • 9:30 am – Wake up, eat, play
  • 10:30 am – Nap
  • 12:00 – Wake up, eat, play
  • 1:00 pm – Nap
  • 2:30 pm – Wake up, eat, play
  • 3:30 pm – Nap
  • 4:30 pm – Wake up, eat, play
  • 5:30 – Cat nap
  • 6:00 pm – Wake up, eat, play
  • 7:30 – Eat again (cluster feed), then down for the night.
  • 9:30 pm – Dreamfeed.
  • 9:30 pm – 7 am – night feeds as needed.

Generally if you can get a newborn to go 3-4 hour stretches during the night from birth to 6 weeks that is pretty good! From 6-12 weeks if you can get a  4-6 hour stretch that’s great. Some babies will go 8-9 hour stretches with the dream feed.

When most author’s taut “getting baby to sleep through the night” they are referring to a 6 hour stretch of sleep. A newborn’s stomach is very small and I typically like to feed at least 2.5 hours during the day, cluster feed in the evenings AND dreamfeed. The more calories you’re able to feed during the day, the less they may need at night.

If you’re looking for more baby sleep schedules, check out my book Routines, Rhythms and Schedules. Inside there are 20+ printable schedules from birth to age 5.

3. Limit the

length of naps during the day.

I know it’s hard to wake a sleeping baby, but sleeping too long of a stretch during the day can rob nighttime sleep. If the baby sleeps past the 2 – 2.5 hour mark, I would go ahead and wake the baby up, feed him, keep him a wake for a bit, and then lay him down for another nap. If you feel the baby truly needs longer naps, feel free to increase the nap limit to 2.5 hours. Breaking up sleep during the day will help your newborn baby sleep better at night. It also enables you to get more feedings in during the day, which is very helpful.

There were, of course, times where our son was overtired and needed a little recovery nap. We would allow him to sleep for a little bit longer for just that one nap and then we started getting back on track with our daily routine.

Related: How to Help Baby Take Longer Naps

4. Use white noise.

No one wants to miss a party, so if your baby is listening to all the fun going on in the house it can be hard to fall asleep and stay asleep.

I place a fan on medium in the baby’s room rather than directly next to the baby, so it does not blow directly on him or sit too close to his sensitive ears. Using white noise also helps immensely when we are traveling! We are usually able to avoid asking friends or family to be quiet 🙂

I’ve used both a regular fan and a white noise machine in the past.

5. Follow the eat, wake, sleep cycle.

The baby wakes from sleep and immediately eats. Then the baby is awake for a while to play. Then the baby goes back to sleep….

This cycle has several purposes. First, it encourages full feedings by allowing the baby to eat immediately after waking. The baby will have the most energy immediately after waking, making him more inclined to take a full feeding and go longer between feedings.

Also, by feeding the baby after sleep rather than before sleep, the cycle prevents the baby from associating food with sleep or using food as a sleep prop. When using this cycle, a feeding before bedtime is typically only feeding before sleep.

Of course, there were times where I definitely fed my baby before sleep. He needed a little TLC for a certain nap, and I was totally fine offering it when he needed it. But for the most part, I tried to avoid feeding him right before sleep.

Note: Newborns require frequent feedings and rest to ensure healthy growth a development in the early months. Always feed your baby as frequently as your baby needs to ensure healthy weight gain.

6. Use a pre-nap and bedtime routines.

It is well known that babies thrive on routine, structure, and predictability. Routines are also an excellent tool to help newborns get settle before sleep at night. Creating consistent routines will help bring order to a very chaotic world for your infant.

Choose a pre-nap routine that works for you.

A pre-nap routine may include taking the baby to his room, close the blinds or curtains, place the baby in his sleep sack or wearable blanket, turn on the white noise, sing a quick song (e.g. Twinkle, twinkle), give a few cuddles, and say your sleepy words “I love you. I hope you have a good sleep.”

A bedtime routine would typically be a little longer.

It may include a bath, a massage, reading a story, offering a feeding, placing the baby in a wearable blanket or swaddle, turning on the white noise, a few cuddles, and saying your sleepy words. Following the same exact routine as consistently as possible cues the baby for sleep, and over time the baby will learn that sleep immediately follows the nap and bedtime routines.

Use these printable (and adorable!) baby sleep routine cards to keep parents, grandparents and babysitters ALL on the same page.

Inside the baby sleep printable pack, I also include a chart to help you know how much a newborn should sleep. It’s a great resource to use when creating your own custom newborn sleep schedule.

7. Change your baby’s diaper strategically…

Changing the diaper before a middle of the night feeding prevents the baby from waking up too much after a feeding is finished. When the baby wakes up change the diaper and re-swaddle to prepare him for sleep immediately following a night feeding. If you change the diaper after the night feeding, the baby may become too awake, making it more challenging for him to fall asleep.

Now, I’ve also heard from parents of very young newborn babies (Think: Birth to 3 weeks) sharing that the baby poops right after a night feeding. This is very common during the early newborn phase when babies are still working out the flow of their digestive tracts.

If your baby is consistently stooling after a night feeding, then certainly, just wait to change the diaper until after the feed. Once your baby’s gut matures and he or she stops stooling immediately after a night feed, you can go back to changing the diaper before the feed.

8. Understand how a baby sleeps.

The more your baby sleeps, the more they will sleep.

It’s backwards but true!

If your newborn won’t sleep, there’s a very good chance, he’s way overtired.

Keeping a baby awake in hopes of tiring him out will actually result in over-stimulation, and he will experience both difficulty falling asleep and staying asleep. It is very likely an overtired baby will sleep shorter, not longer.

Note: Sometimes this tip confuses readers. And it’s no wonder. First I said limit naps during the day, and now I said an overtired baby will sleep shorter, not longer.

Let me be more clear:

  • Limiting the length of naps is important to support night time sleep. You want the baby to get in as many feedings as possible during the daytime. Think: More daytime feeds = less nighttime feeds. 
  • You don’t want to keep the baby awake for long stretches. Your baby will get over-tired, fussy and have difficulty falling back asleep.
  • Bottom line: Encourage lots of naps AND feedings during the day following the eat, wake, sleep cycle.

Related: 8 Infant Sleep Facts Every Parent Should Know


Don’t rush in…

We may inadvertently encourage the start of a bad sleep habit by rushing in when a baby cries or rustles during the night. Often times, babies wake up babble and go back to sleep.

The baby may even cry briefly or babble and still be asleep.

Give the baby some time and see if he will resettle himself. Avoid rushing in and disturbing this process in order to help your newborn baby sleep better.

Waiting anywhere from 2-10 minutes to see if your newborn settles is a good place to start. There’s no exact science. Listen to your baby’s cries. If your baby is starting to escalate, it’s usually a good sign he needs some extra comfort and support.

10. Lay the baby down awake, but drowsy.

The most important way to encourage your newborn to sleep in the long run is to teach him to fall asleep independently, which is essentially the beginnings of teaching independent sleep.

Babies, like adults, will naturally wake up during the night. Without knowing how to get back to sleep, a baby will cry out after waking regardless of actual need, resulting in night waking droning on for much longer than is actually necessary.

Once a baby gets older, falling asleep independently enables a baby to drift back to sleep after waking in the night, ultimately helping your baby sleep better in the long run.

You can start by settling your baby into a drowsy state with your newborn baby routine, then lay your baby down in their safe sleep space. If needed, place a gentle but firm hand over your babies chest while he drifts off.

Print your free baby sleep checklist!

Chances are…you won’t remember the tips from this post. This printable simplifies it! Plus, when you grab this printable, you’ll get instant access to my free 3-day baby sleep eCourse.

Download your free printable

  1. Download the checklist. You’ll get the printable straight to your inbox, plus get my Free 3-Day Baby Sleep eCourse!
  2. Print. Any paper will do the trick, but card stock would be ideal.
  3. Place it on your refrigerator. Use it as a quick reference and don’t forget a thing!

Want more on baby sleep?

  • 8 Infant Sleep Facts Every Parent Should Know
  • The Newborn Routine That Will Help Baby Fall Asleep Fast
  • This Baby Bedtime Routine Is Easy and Works Like Magic
  • 6 Tried and True Baby Sleep Schedules That Parents Love

I've created a free email series just for you! If you are struggling with finding a routine, rhythm or schedule, this email series will help you find one that will work for YOUR family. Yes, really. I've seen my sample routines work time and time again for parents. I know it can work for you too.

This free email series will help you:

  • Free sample routines for your child
  • Best morning routine tips and tricks your kids will actually follow
  • All-time favorite parenting hacks for getting more cooperation at bedtime
  • Step-by-step guide for using a printable daily schedule with kids

Click here to sign up!

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Putting the child to sleep: useful tips and recommendations

Author, editor and medical expert - Muraeva Yulia Yurievna.

Views: 207 562

Last update date: 06/23/2022 G.

Average Reading time: 12 minutes


Rhythm of children's sleep
How to properly post sleep baby
How to help your baby sleep
How to teach a child to sleep in his own crib?
Bedtime rituals
What are the bedtime rituals?

Sleep is an important part of life, so it must be regular and of high quality 1 . But often the first year of a child's life becomes a real test for parents. Even such a seemingly simple action as putting a newborn to sleep sometimes turns into a task of increased complexity.

The difficulty is that in infants, sleep is still being formed, and circadian rhythms differ from those to which parents are accustomed 2 .

Rhythms of baby sleep

Before birth, the alternation of sleep phases in the fetus is subject to circadian (daily) rhythms and fluctuations in the hormonal background of the expectant mother. After giving birth, it takes time for the child to mature its own regulatory system 2 .

A term newborn sleeps an average of 16-17 hours 2 , and the total duration of sleep is not affected by dark and daylight hours 3 .

Babies up to 2 months have 2 sleep phases 2.3 :

  • Active sleep. Starts after falling asleep. This phase is important for the stimulation and development of the central nervous system. During active sleep, you can observe the baby's mobility, rapid eye movements and a weakening of reactions to external stimuli (light, sound, touch).
  • Peaceful sleep. Follows the active phase. During restful sleep, the heart rate slows down, the movements of the eyeballs stop, and the baby stops moving his arms and legs.

Together these 2 phases form a cycle. Each cycle begins with active sleep followed by restful sleep. The duration of such a cycle is approximately 45-60 minutes 3 .

But the sleep-wake cycle lasts longer. For breastfed babies, it is approximately 1-3 hours, and for "artificial" children, it is 2-5 hours 3 .

Gradually, periods of wakefulness lengthen, and most of the sleep occurs at night 2 :

  • By the end of 3 months of life, an uninterrupted night's sleep can be about 5 hours 3 .
  • From 2 to 12 months, babies sleep 9-10 hours at night 3 , while daytime sleep is divided into 1-4 episodes that can last from 30 minutes to 2 hours 3 .

Sleep regularity and sleep disturbances can be assessed after 6 months, when the child develops circadian rhythms 3 .

Although the night sleep becomes longer, each cycle is still accompanied by micro-awakenings (wakings) 2. 3 , after which the baby can fall asleep quickly enough. This is a short-term activation of the central nervous system, which must be distinguished from a full awakening 2 . It is good if at this moment the mother is nearby and helps the child fall asleep again.

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How to Put Your Baby to Sleep

The American Pediatrics Association has developed guidelines for safe sleep for babies. Below are some of them (the full list of recommendations can be found at the link) 4 :

  • The best sleeping position is on your back.
  • The mattress should be hard enough, and the crib should not be cluttered with things, blankets, pillows.
  • No smoking in the nursery.
  • If the child sleeps in a cool room, it is better to dress him warmly or put him in a special sleeping bag for babies. He should be warm, but not hot, so it is not recommended to wrap him with a blanket. And in order for the baby to breathe freely, in no case cover him with a blanket with his head.

Babies up to 12 months of age still need to feed at night, so sleeping in the same room with the mother may be necessary to optimize breastfeeding and closer contact 4 . Co-sleeping in the same room with parents does not mean that the child will sleep with them in the same bed, because it does not meet the safety requirements 4 .

Before putting your newborn to bed, also remember that:

  • Tight swaddling is not recommended0036 4 . There are babies who find this soothing, but swaddling can interfere with the baby's breathing because the chest is compressed and the baby cannot take a deep breath. 4 . Tight swaddling also increases the risk of a lung infection and can aggravate hip dysplasia. Do not swaddle a baby who is already rolling over from his back to his stomach 4 .
  • There is no consensus on the use of pacifiers. Some experts believe that they have a negative effect on breastfeeding and interfere with the formation of the correct bite. Other evidence suggests that pacifiers help reduce the risk of respiratory and cardiac problems in infants up to 12 months of age 4 .
  • Don't encourage falling asleep in your arms or while feeding. Older babies do not need to be allowed to fall asleep while watching a movie, after a set time, or in their parent's bed 4 .

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How to help your baby fall asleep

As the baby develops, fears, anxiety, anxiety may appear when he refuses to sleep separately from his parents and resists falling asleep 2 . The maturation of biological rhythms is facilitated by the environment of the child, the behavior of parents, compliance with the regimen and rules of sleep hygiene 3 .

To ensure quality rest and proper development, parents need to follow the recommendations. Specialists advise following these rules 4 :

  • Put the baby to bed in the evening and wake up in the morning at about the same time, despite weekends and holidays 4 .
  • Avoid physical activity before bed 4 .
  • Limit activities in bed that are not related to falling asleep (playing, feeding), as this interferes with the baby's understanding of sleep 4 .
  • Keep the bedroom comfortable - moderate temperature, low lighting, minimal noise, comfortable pajamas 4 .
  • Form a laying ritual 5 .
  • Follow the diet - the baby should not have any hunger or overeating. Before going to bed, you can feed him a little 5 .
  • Keep an activity diary so that you can analyze and understand what interferes with your child's sleep 4 .

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How can I get my baby to sleep in his own crib?

There are various methods to help a child fall asleep on his own, without the help of parents. They are often used as a non-drug treatment for insomnia (sleep disorder) in young children aged 1 to 3 years 4 . Examples of such techniques are described below. Choosing the right one for your baby should be discussed with a baby sleep specialist.

One way to overcome sleep disorders is through behavioral therapy. It helps to change wrong associations and sleep patterns in a child 4.7 . In behavioral therapy, the abandonment method is used. With him, parents immediately leave the child in the crib and leave the nursery. However, they do not return when they hear his cries or call, giving him the opportunity to fall asleep on his own 4 . But psychologists do not recommend using this approach if the baby is not yet 6 months old and is breastfeeding 4 , as this may adversely affect the baby's condition.

In addition, the abandonment method is not suitable for all parents. For those who want to be near or calm a crying baby 4 experts recommend other methods - "check and hold" or "gradual repayment" 4.7 .

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"Checking and Holding"

When getting ready for bed, the parent spends some time with the child, then puts him to bed and leaves the room or goes to bed if she is in the nursery. At the same time, they do not approach the baby for 15-20 minutes and do not react to his crying or screaming. This period is called "hold" 7

When the 20 minutes have elapsed, the parent goes to the child, straightens his bed and returns to himself. This part is called checking 7 .

It is very important not to take him out of the crib and feed him when he wakes up. The exception is children who require night feedings for age or medical reasons. In all other cases, the parent simply comes to the crib for a short time to check, and then leaves again for a 15-20 minute “hold” 7 .

Gradually - over several nights - increase the "hold" interval to 30 minutes 7 .

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Gradual repayment

This technique is designed to “repay” the child's protests and manipulations 7 . There are 2 options for "gradual repayment" - with and without the presence of a parent 4 .

The classic option is to leave the baby alone in the bedroom for a certain amount of time, gradually accustoming him to fall asleep on his own. Unlike the “check and hold” method, the child can be calmed down. But you need to return to his bed not at the first call, but after a certain time. After the child calms down, you need to leave again, increasing the intervals when he tries to fall asleep without you 7 . This option is suitable for babies over 6 months old 4 .

Until the age of six months, use the “gradual repayment” method in the presence of a parent. It is carried out in stages 4 :

  • The parent puts the baby to bed and sits next to it. If the bed is large, you can lie down next to the child.
  • On subsequent nights, mom or dad still stays close to the baby, but gradually reduces the number of touches, communicates less with him, showing him that they are busy with something, for example, reading or cleaning the room.
  • When putting the child to bed, the parent does not lie down next to him, but sits on a chair not far from the bed, about 5 meters from it, continuing to sit until the baby falls asleep.
  • In the next step, the distance between the bed and the chair is increased by gradually moving it away.
  • A little later you can leave the nursery for a while, but be sure to return before the baby cries.

If the child wakes up, repeat the same steps that you perform at this stage of the procedure. The stages can be stretched over several days so that the baby has time to get used to each 4 .

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Bedding rituals

Forming a bedding ritual is considered to be an effective method 4 . It can complement the "repayment" technique, but sometimes it works quite well on its own. Suitable for all ages, but the earlier it is started, the less likely babies are to develop sleep problems - they fall asleep faster and sleep longer 4 .

The ritual begins at the moment of the child's drowsiness. Before you put the baby to sleep, you need to perform a number of actions. They should be predictable, regular, relaxing and positive. The total duration of the ritual is 20-45 minutes 4 . If it was not possible to meet the set time, most likely, you need to shift the ritual to another time and wait for drowsiness. It can manifest itself as loss of interest in surrounding toys and people, reddening of the eyelids, rubbing of the eyes, yawning 4 .

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What are the rituals for falling asleep?

Experts recommend preparing for sleep, which consists of consecutive, daily repeated actions, the so-called routines 5 . They help to speed up falling asleep, increase the quality and duration of sleep, reduce the number of night awakenings 5 .

The most typical nightly rituals 6 :

  • Bathing in warm water with your favorite foam or bath product, light massage.
  • Soothing sounds - "white noise". This is a monotonous noise that does not carry a semantic load, soothes and helps to forget, for example, flowing water, a metronome, ticking clocks or recordings of nature sounds.
  • Lullabies and fairy tales.
  • Wishes for "good night", "sweet dreams" or other phrases that are said only before going to bed.

Sleep experts recommend a three-step ritual that includes bathing, massage and quiet time in the crib 8 .

  • Bath foam can be used during bathing. For babies from 6 months, JOHNSON’S ® Baby Bath Foam "Before Bed" is suitable. It has a soothing scent to help your baby get ready for bed 8 .
  • Immediately after a warm bath, a milk can be applied to the skin, such as JOHNSON’S ® Bedtime Milk 8 , for children over 6 months of age, by lightly stroking the skin. Such a massage will calm the baby even more and prepare him for sleep, especially thanks to the pleasant smell of milk 8 .
  • At the third stage, you need to change the child into pajamas, read a bedtime story or sing a lullaby 4,8 .

As a rule, a few days are enough to form an association between the evening routine and falling asleep 4 .

As you can see, pediatricians and psychologists have developed various methods for healthy children's sleep and fast falling asleep. But you need to use them, taking into account the age of the child, his habits and characteristics of the nervous system. The task of parents is to organize the baby’s daily routine and prepare him for sleep, calming and creating positive associations with the process of falling asleep. With the correct implementation of the recommendations of a specialist, the child will gradually learn to fall asleep independently and faster, will sleep longer and sounder.

You may also be interested in:

Traveling with your baby
Baby's Skin Care Guide

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The information in this article is for guidance only and does not replace professional medical advice. For diagnosis and treatment, contact a qualified specialist.


  1. E.S. Sakharova. What worries the baby? Pediatric pharmacology, 2010, volume 7, No. 2, pp. 143-148.
  2. I.A. Kelmanson. Formation of the state of sleep in ontogeny and the problems arising from this. Neurology and psychiatry. Special issue "Sleep and its disorders-5". Effective pharmacotherapy, 2017, No. 35, p.4-13
  3. M.G.Poluektov, P.V.pchelina. Sleep in children: from physiology to pathology. Medical Council, 2017, No. 9, pp. 98-103.
  4. P.V.Pchelina. M.G.Poluektov. How to treat insomnia in early childhood. Neurology and psychiatry. Special issue "Sleep and its disorders-4". Effective pharmacotherapy, 2016, No. 19, pp.52-60.
  5. Jodi A. Mindell, PhD; Lorena S. Telofski, BA; Benjamin Wiegand, PhD; Ellen S. Kurtz, PhD. A Nightly Bedtime Routine: Impact on Sleep in Young Children and Maternal Mood. (The Nightly Sleep Schedule: Effects on Young Children's Sleep and Maternal Mood) SLEEP (Sleep), Vol. 32, no. 5, 2009. pp. 599-607.
  6. E.A. Korabelnikova. Treatment and prevention of insomnia in young children. Russian Psychiatric Journal, 2012, No. 3, pp. 62-70.
  7. M.G. Poluektov Sleep disorders in childhood: causes and modern therapy // Effective pharmacotherapy, Neurology and psychiatry. 1/2012
  8. Mindell J, Lorena S, Telofsky BA et al. Nightly sleep routine: effects on young children's sleep and maternal mood. Sleep. 2009; 23:599–606.

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9 easy ways to lull your baby to sleep in no time

Does your child keep you awake all night long? You've probably tried everything you could think of, but still don't know how to calm a crying baby so that he gets at least a couple of hours of sleep. Before you finally give up on your own sleep over the next few years try these simple tricks and see if they work?

Does your child keep you awake all night long? You've probably tried everything you could think of, but still don't know how to calm a crying baby so that he gets at least a couple of hours of sleep. Before you completely give up on your own sleep over the next few years, try these simple ways - and what if they work?

Tip 1: Don't make eye contact

It's a magical feeling when you look into your child's beautiful eyes... But if you're just trying to put him to bed, it's best to exercise reasonable caution. Prolonged eye contact has a stimulating effect on your baby , which prevents him from falling asleep.

Tip 2: Calm bathing

Splashing in the water can be fun, but if you're bathing your baby before bed, you might want to achieve a calming effect . Splashes, singing, various toys and loud voices excite the child, and then he is not able to fall asleep immediately after the bath. Instead, try dimming the lights, lowering the volume of your voice, using warm water, and doing your best to help your child relax before bed.

Tip 3: Feed your baby in your sleep

It may seem counterintuitive - why would you wake a sleeping baby to feed him when you really want him to keep sleeping? Well, experts believe that feeding your baby in your sleep helps you make sure he stays full, which means won't wake up screaming when hungry in the middle of the night. Makes sense, doesn't it?

Tip 4: Don't overdo the decor

Parents, especially inexperienced ones, can sometimes find it hard to hold back when shopping for their gold. If your family has the same problem, the crib is in danger of becoming a mountain of toys, decorations, stuffed animals, blankets, pillows... well, you get the idea. While some of these things can be helpful, they are also often distracting for the child, interfering with a comfortable sleep. Leave only the essentials in and around the crib if you want things to work out.

Tip 5: Seize the moment

The later you put your baby to bed, the sooner he will fall asleep, right? But no! Alas, an overtired child, as a rule, falls asleep with difficulty . That's why it's so important to stick to the regimen and go to bed at the same time every day. Don't worry about your baby waking up early if you put them to bed early - going to bed early can actually lead to better nighttime sleep and, therefore, waking up later.

Tip 6: Avoid overheating

Your mother or grandmother probably says that the child should be constantly wrapped up, and cooling him, you can endanger his life - but this is very far from the truth. In fact, many children find it difficult to fall asleep simply because their bedroom is too warm. If this is also your case, try to lower the temperature in the bedroom to about 18-21 °C . You must be surprised how big a difference such a small change can make.

Tip 7: Swaddle tightly

If you usually don't have much space in your sleep, you will find it hard to believe that a baby actually needs a little less space than at night. The fact is that a newborn is used to being in a very limited space (he was quite comfortable in his mother's stomach), so by wrapping him up well, you help him feel at home, which contributes to restful sleep.

Tip 8: Turn on white noise

Many parents make the mistake of trying to achieve complete silence in the children's bedroom.

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