Newborns love sleep–no, they really do–except that their version of shuteye is nowhere near the brand we’ve come to cherish with age and a bygone youth of partying: newbie infants should be clocking up between 14 and 17 hours of sleep per day, but this happens only in chunks of around 2 hours (or less!)–their tiny bellies digest and empty fast, so they need to wake frequently to refuel. So, you need to balance the need to feed with the all-important zzz’s; for a happy, healthy bub, and a household not held captive by an overtired, rage-y baby. The trick? Get ’em to bed the minute you spot the telltale sleepy signs.
If the benefits of better sleep are many–improved mood, sharpened memory and attention, decreased risk of childhood obesity, to name a few–then how do we get our little ones to sleep better? The answer is confoundingly simple: routine.
Plenty babies fight sleep–and it can often seem as if they’d happily go on playing and socialising for hours without a break…that is, until, they suddenly go from zero to meltdown. Fact is, little ones are very easy overstimulated (the world is SO exciting, Mum!); no matter how vague their methods of communication may be–or your ability to pick up on their cues.
Sleep is essential for healthy development – it’s also key in keeping kids from morphing into short-tempered mini tyrants. So; while getting a good night’s rest is mostly a dream for mums and dads – and simply par for the parenting course, we still need to prioritise the length of time our little ones should be spending in lalaland. Check out this handy guide on how many hours of sleep your child needs per day.
Mums and dads have been trying to crack the Da Vinci code of baby sleep for eons; so anything that seems to work for one (not matter how dubious) is worth a go — especially if it takes just 15 seconds – and a single word.