My Baby Won’t Sleep

My Baby Won’t Sleep

I always love the excitement of my clients as they expect that first baby, the second, or the third. The arrival of a new baby always brings so much joy, excitement, and love into the family. At the same time, it’s tough in those early days, and it’s ok to say it is tough! You are both exhausted, and the baby won’t sleep!! As a Philadelphia newborn photographer, I know that the Sleepless Baby conversion often comes up; many of my moms always say my baby won’t sleep.

As a mom of two boys and a newborn photographer in Philadelphia, I spend lots of time with babies and helping them go to sleep. I’m going to share with you some tips that work in my studio and have worked for me at home with my own boys. Now, I am no expert; I am just a mama sharing some tips in the hope that maybe they can help turn that sleepless baby into a sleeping baby.

 

baby looking up at mom in her armsSet the “Sleep” Mood 

When I prepare my studio for your baby’s pictures, many of the things I do are to mimic the baby in the womb. Darken the room—some blackout curtains are great for this. Use a white noise machine for the baby. In the studio, I even use the “Mother’s Heartbeat” sound. These all mimic what babies heard when they were inside your cozy belly.

Swaddle Swaddle Swaddle!

dad snuggling his new baby

Speaking of mimicking the womb, swaddle your baby! I hear all the time, oh, my baby does not like to be swaddled. Some babies might not, but most babies, especially new ones, love to be swaddled. The swaddle provides comfort and reminds them of the tight space in the belly. If your baby is struggling to sleep during those early days and is not turning over, try the swaddle.

baby boy won't sleep laying on moms shoulder. his eyes are peeking over her shoulderBaby Sleep Without Mom

Oh, I know this struggle!!! My boys would wake up the minute I put them down, especially my first. A mama friend shared with me the smell and milk trick. That sounds funny, right? But gosh, it worked. First, the smell trick, no judgment, please. I would sleep on his fitted sheet. That’s right, it became my new blanket. Why? Because my smell would be on it. It sounds crazy, but our babies can smell us a mile away. Once it was time to lay the baby down, I would put that sheet on the crib and lay the baby on it. And for the final touch, the milk trick….. I would put a little milk on the sheet near the baby’s face so the baby would smell me and the milk. For some reason, it was the perfect combination, and it worked.

Sometimes, when you are tired, you must reach for all the tricks in the book. Try the smell and milk trick.

Mother holding her baby boy and looking at him. she is sitting in her large rocker by the window. the light highlights just their faces.Routine Routine Routine

As a previous Philadephia Teacher, and A-type mama, I can tell you this is a big one. Establish what you want bedtime to look and feel like. Keep this same routine, it will help you as your baby grows. A routine will send a signal to your baby its time for sleep. In the early stages of your baby’s life, a routine can be as simple as music, reading a book, swaddle, a little lavender lotion, lights out. And as your baby grows into the toddler years it helps them know what to expect. We all know toddlers love routines.

Dad with new baby sitting by the window light.The Overtired Baby

As you settle in with your little one, learn to read your baby’s cues. Once you know the baby’s tired cues, place them in the crib at that moment. Suppose you wait too long past the first signs of tiredness. In that case, your baby might grow to be overtired and overstimulated – making it hard for them to fall asleep.

 

Most Important… BE PATIENT

As you read through this, remember that every baby is so different. Your baby’s personality is established already. So, don’t feel it does not work for your baby when you try something. Adjust and try it another way, and just be patient. As a classroom teacher, it would take me one month to establish routines and procedures, and there were six. Take your time, baby fr, esh into the world. Patience and persistence might help you and your baby get more sleep.

 

My Baby Won’t Sleep

As a mom of two boys I can tell you, my boys barely slept without me holding them.  It was such a struggle to get a minute to myself.  None the less, I found ways to work around it, now that they are both older, I can say, I miss waking up with them sneaking into my bed curling up next to me.  The phrase my baby won’t sleep seems to be the most common during the first few months, but remember it will pass.  Hang in there. Your doing an amazing job!

 

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