Napping dos and dont's
Age: 11 weeks 5 days
- Get into a nap routine your baby can count on. If feeding, napping and bedtime happen at around the same time every day, and if the naptime and bedtime preparation routines stay consistent, she will be more likely to fall asleep easily and without fussing, and to get the amount of sleep she needs.
- Put your baby down for a nap sometimes before she is asleep. As your baby gets older, it will help her learn how to fall asleep on her own if you put her down into her crib, cot or bassinet for a nap when she is still sleepy but awake.
- Be flexible! your baby is changing so much at this point in her life, so it only makes sense that what she needs from her sleep schedule will change as well. If your baby is starting to have trouble sleeping at night, for example, it may be a sign that her napping schedule needs to be adjusted, either by eliminating a nap, or by making napping happen earlier in the day. Routines are still important, so if you do need to make this kind of adjustment, try changing it slowly, in ten-or-fifteen-minute-a-day increments over the course of several days.
- Nap on an unsafe surface. Naps should follow the same rules as nighttime sleep - including placing your baby in a safe sleeping surface where there is nothing for her to get tangled in, or which would pose a suffocation risk, like pillows, blankets, soft toys, or a nap-buddy. While there are definitely benefits to sleeping at the same time as your baby, and even in the same room, sleeping in the same bed can be dangerous, and the American Academy of Pediatrics advises against it.
- Move straight from feeding to sleeping. your baby is naturally sleepy after feeding, so it might feel like the perfect time for a nap, but if your baby regularly moves straight from eating into sleep, she may have a harder time falling asleep when she transitions into a more regular eating and sleeping schedule as she gets older.
- Mary L. Gavin. “Sleep.” KidsHealth. The Nemours Foundation, December 2016. Retrieved October 25 2017. http://kidshealth.org/en/parents/sleepnewborn.html.
- “The Best Time For Your Baby’s Morning Nap.” sleep.org. National Sleep Foundation. Retrieved October 25 2017. https://sleep.org/articles/best-time-for-your-babys-morning-nap/.
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