Becoming a new, second or third time parent plus can be hard work and new challenges arise particularly if the baby won’t sleep. Of course if you’ve had a baby before you are expected to ‘know what to do’, however every baby is different and each birth is too. If you’ve had complications or had set backs since your baby was born this can affect your experience of becoming a new mum and in trying to establish sleep and feeding patterns. In the early weeks and months a baby may sleep anything from between 10-18 hours a day, which may be a surprise to hear for some of you. Having said this, a baby who is happy and has all their needs met is likely to sleep longer and be easier to settle.There is no fixed amount, so try not to worry if your baby is having less than you have read or been told elsewhere, things change from week to week.
Some babies gently settle down into a good routine and happily doze off, while others will want constant feeding, holding or rocking. The most important thing is to not lose sight of mums health and well-being, here are some tips which suggest the best way to overcome things that will help your baby to sleep longer:
1. Ask for help, don’t struggle alone particularly if you have any concerns about your baby or yourself, see your health visitor or GP.
2. Talk to other mums or a trusted friend who won’t judge you.
3. Take some time to relax in the day, if only for 20-30 minutes midday ideally around 2 hours. See if someone can watch the baby for you or sleep when baby sleeps.
4. Go for a walk or get some exercise, this will help improve your mind and is good for baby to get some fresh air too and usually helps a baby sleep longer.
5. Note feed and sleep times then you can see how much sleep baby has had, often it’s more than you think and this will help you to feel better.
Hopefully soon you will overcome the reason why your baby won’t sleep, no doubt there will be something new on your mind, since babies are always changing! More baby tips coming soon….