We've recently partnered with Nurturing Mums, who run successful 5 week postnatal courses across 8 different London locations. Their aim is to help bring new mamas and babies together, in order to receive non-judgemental expert advice on sleep, weaning, baby development and first aid.
Advice from sleep consultant on getting your baby to sleep through the night
During the course, mums will receive a free professional photo of them and their little one, a goody bag, a baby blanket from MORI, and continued support from a sleep or weaning expert after the course thanks to Wellvine app!
We know that finding ways to get a newborn baby to sleep through the night can be tiring (and you definitely don't need that!), so we spoke to Nurturing Mums' sleep expert & consultant, Katie Fischer, for some advice to help you out. Making sure your whole family has a better night's sleep...
1. building a regular routine
The first step to establishing a routine for your baby is getting a regular bedtime and sequence leading up to it in place that’s both manageable for your family across the week and conducive to sleep. Choose a series of stages that you repeat every night, lasting no more than 30-45 minutes, which might include a warm bath, getting dressed in night clothes, a quick massage, milk and/or story if age appropriate, a cuddle and then into bed. Keep the bedtime routine calm and focussed around the bathroom and bedroom so that the cues for sleep aren’t lost and you’re not bringing your baby back into a light space or one they associate with play.
2. less screen time, more sleep
If you turn screens and electronics off at least 30 minutes before your baby’s bedtime it will give their brain time to unwind and recover from the effect of the bright lights emitted, which are known to reduce the production of the sleepy hormone melatonin.
3. promoting more night-time snoozing
Early rising can be a challenging issue to resolve but there are several factors that commonly reinforce early waking patterns, so worth looking at these areas if your baby regularly wakes before 6am or gets less than 11 hours of sleep at night. Your baby may be having too much daytime sleep or a morning nap that is too early or too long for their age, which then becomes a catch-up sleep as if part of the night-time sleep has become separate. If you don’t have effective blackout curtains or blinds, particularly in the spring and summer months, your baby may rouse in a light sleep phase and think it’s time to get up or, if you tend to get your baby up and out of their cot before 6am, the exposure to light resets a new sleep-to-wake cycle, which will keep their body clocks attuned to an earlier wake. Similarly, if you’re feeding your baby around 5/5.30am beyond the age where they really need it, or bringing breakfast forward to accommodate an early start, it could be a learnt hunger, which means that they will continue waking at this time too.
4. out and about strolling
Take your baby out for a walk in the afternoon where possible, as sunlight and fresh air at this time of day will help regulate their body clock and encourage good night-time sleep.
For more support through those first few months and to get your little one sleeping, you can join a Nurturing Mums postnatal course.