United Kingdom

Midwife shares insider tips to getting your baby to sleep

A midwife has shared her top tips to getting your baby into a more regular sleep pattern at night. 

Shared with FEMAIL, the advice comes after advanced British baby monitor company Owlet ran a study with 2,000 UK parents, which revealed the surprising things they would give up for a bit of extra shut-eye.

The research revealed that two in five parents would give up alcohol, three in 10 would give up sex and nearly three quarters (72 per cent) are willing to pay to get a good night's sleep - with 27 per cent happy to splurge over £100 for a babysitter. 

Owlet Baby Care and midwife Carrie Sirry shared their advice on the tweaks you can make to get another five minutes of peace - including introducing a 'theme tune' which your baby will associate with sleep time, and introducing blackout blinds.

A midwife has shared her top tips to get your baby to sleep after British company Owlet ran a study with 2,000 parents, which revealed three in 10 parents would give up sex for more sleep

1. Cool operator

'Keeping the baby warm in a cool room can help aid their sleep. Ideally, the room temperature should be between 16-21C. The lower end of the spectrum is optimal for sleep.

'Sleeping bags are an excellent tool to keep your baby warm. Newborns can be swaddled or use a low tog sleeping bag. If your baby is over 6 months old you may find that they prefer a sleeping bag without feet. 

'When out and about in the summer, prams and buggies should not be covered with anything that prevents the air from circulating - a sunshade is recommended instead.'

2. Stay away from the light

'Darkness encourages the release of melatonin (the sleep hormone). After eight weeks of age, a baby’s circadian rhythm (body clock) begins to develop and they slowly start to synchronise with the 24 hour cycle of day and night. 

'Make your baby’s room as dark as it can be to help with those sleepy hormones - you might get sleepy yourself. 

'If you would like to use a night light opt for one that emits sleep friendly red or very low levels of blue light'.

3. Keep the white noise going

'Many babies benefit from the use of white or pink noise/ familiar sounds when calming down and sleeping. 

'If used to help them drift off to sleep then it is recommended to have this on continuously while they are sleeping. This is because babies have fairly short sleep cycles of 40-60 minutes. 

'Sometimes babies will rouse from their sleep cycle and if the environment has changed since entering the last cycle they may need help starting a new sleep cycle. 

'If a baby wakes and hears the same noises that were playing when they went to sleep it may be the reassurance they need that all is well.'

4. Bath, book, bed. Repeat

'A consistent bedtime routine is agreed upon by scientists and sleep experts to be hugely beneficial in helping your baby sleep. 

'This can help to prevent your baby from becoming overstimulated and offers the opportunity to wind down before bedtime. 

'A similar bedtime each night can help support a baby’s circadian rhythm, but it is believed to be more important to repeat the same things in the same order before every bedtime. 

'Examples might include a wash, changing in a dimly lit room, signing or reading a story, feeding and cuddling your baby. If you find that your baby is resisting sleep around 7pm try pushing it back to 7.45pm and see if this makes a difference.'

Midwife Carrie Sirry shared their advice on the tweaks you can make to get another five minutes of peace - including introducing a 'theme tune' which your baby will associate with sleep time, and introducing blackout blinds (stock image)

5. Set the mood

'We have all heard about the relaxing properties of lavender oil. Often found in pillow sprays, a spritz of lavender is synonymous with better sleep. 

'After 12 weeks you might wish to consider diffusing lavender essential oil in your baby’s room an hour before bedtime. This will help you relax too if you’re feeling a little frazzled!'

6. Get those black out blinds in place

'Babies don't care if it's night or day, summer or winter. A little bit of night time trickery might just be the thing you need to get baby into a routine.'

7. Don't stop them napping

'Keeping baby awake rarely means they'll drop off peacefully come bed time. A rested baby is more likely to drift off than a tired one'.

8. Find your theme tune

'Back in the 80s there was a bit of research that the Eastenders theme tune was helping babies up and down the country drift off. 

'While nodding off to the opening melody of Game Of Thrones might sound weird, if it works it works'.

9. Shift the timezone

'If you're looking to adjust bed time, then everything needs to shift, not just when you get baby down. So that means, lunch, snooze time, bath all needs to be moved a touch later. Get them in the zone! 

'There's no such thing as a perfect sleeper. We've all had them right? The friend or family member that keeps saying how their experience was of a baby that slept 8 hrs every night. Well, that's their experience not yours. 

'Drop the comparisons and roll with the response of your baby. Nothing else matters'.

10. Baby's Secret

'We all have our little life comforts that are unique to us, and baby's no different. 

'You'll soon start to see if they like to be rolled over and rubbed until they relax; prefer to have a pillow; or like to cuddle up with something soft. Keep your eye out, their secret will soon become pretty obvious'.

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