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How to Navigate Bedtime to Help Your Baby Sleep Through the

How to Navigate Bedtime to Help Your Baby Sleep Through the Night


Any parent will tell you that sleep is a rare, beautiful thing those first few months (or years) of your baby's life. But thanks to helpful resources and supportive friends, family, and yes, even co-workers, new-baby sleep issues can get, dare we say it, a bit easier. The parents at POPSUGAR have a group chat that is utilised daily by those seeking advice or sharing tips. Everything from what nappy to use to prevent uncomfortable nappy rash to nighttime bath routines gets discussed in our informative group chat. Below is a roundup of helpful nuggets of knowledge that have been shared by fellow co-workers — new parents and veteran parents alike.
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"Inspired by reading Goodnight Moon so many times, I would put the house 'to sleep' every night. I’d dim the lights all around the house, say goodnight, and then turn the lights out and put those rooms to sleep. I’d even let the dog go out one last time and then put the dog to bed. From an early age, I taught my daughter to start slowing down and preparing her mind to sleep. Funny thing: I still “put the house to sleep” and she’s now 18 years old." — Annie Wasserman, director, business development


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"I noticed every time my son was learning a new skill, it would drastically interrupt his sleep cycle. He would often wake up in the middle of the night inconsolable and upset. Some doctors and friends just recommended letting him settle himself back down, but my husband and I started doing a middle of the night "reset" instead. When he would wake up really upset, we would go into his room, turn on a soft light, get him out of bed, and change his nappy. Getting a nappy change would usually help settle him, remind him that mummy and daddy are there, and get him ready to go back to bed with a dry, leak-proof nappy that we knew would provide up to 12 hours extra protection all night long. To be honest, I wouldn't replace those middle-of-the-night nappy sessions for anything." — Amanda Elser Murray, content director

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"Recently, we realised our 1-and-a-half-year-old was taking a long time to fall asleep at night (sometimes up to an hour). Instead of going right from the living room to bed, we started going into her nursery 30 minutes before bedtime and playing in there. When we go in there it signals to her that it's almost time for bed, which helps her wind down. We turn on the sound machine and she's asleep in 10 minutes!" — Lauren Winter, VP of account strategy


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"The most important bit of advice anyone ever gave us was this: falling asleep is a skill and you are not just sleep training your baby, you are sleep training yourselves! We tried sleep training our first child when she was around 4 months old, but gave up too soon — we just could not hack it. By the time we got around to trying again, she had developed all sorts of negative sleep associations, like being bounced and sung to.

"Not sure what we expected — we had ignorantly taught her that was how you go to sleep. Now that we didn’t want to do those things, no wonder she was upset. For baby number two, we did it right (we were also just too tired to fuss as much). Starting at 3 months old, it was a bath, into pyjamas, three books, then a kiss on the head from big sis, and into the crib. We never went back in, and within three days she was asleep within minutes! She’s now almost 2 years old and can fall asleep with just the kiss." — Bob Geile, director of visuals


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"My littlest, Sage is 2-and-a-half years old. We have a really simple bedtime routine that we do every night, and we both look forward to it! She has a bath after dinner — about an hour before bedtime. She has lots of toys in the tub and likes to play and sing, and wind down. I find the warm water really relaxes her and sometimes, if we've had a really busy day, I add a little bit of lavender oil for an extra calming effect.

After the bath, she picks out her pyjamas and we brush her teeth and put on some lotion. She likes to put lotion on my hands 'to make me feel better.' I've gotten in the habit of repeating the same phrase at bedtime — "two books, one song, and bed bed" — it sounds silly but she always repeats it or finishes the sentence when I start it. Sometimes I even say it in the tub or during dinner so she knows it's almost time for bed. Toddlers do really well when they know what's coming next. I let her pick two books, then I tuck her in and turn out the lights. Then she gets to pick one song. I stand by the door and sing her one song and then say goodnight. So far it's working really well and she never expects more because it's always the same!" — Dana Avidan Cohn, executive style director