There is a lot of conflicting information out there about how best to put your baby to sleep during winter. It can be hard for parents to make sense of and, when it’s hard for us parents, it can be hard for our little ones too. However, it doesn’t need to be. With the correct education, sleep during the chilly winter months can be snuggly, simple, and straightforward.
Here are the top 5 mistakes parents tend to make and ways to avoid them –
Parents are often told to dress their baby in one more layer than they would wear themselves during sleep. It’s important to remember that babies are smaller, they have a lot less body fat and muscle than adults, and they lie still in an empty cot (or bassinet) without any excess bedding covering them. Therefore, they need multiple layers of clothing – more than an adult would wear – plus their thick TOG-rated sleepwear garment to ensure they stay snug and warm at bedtime and through the winter nights.
2. Cold Environment
Babies who sleep in a cool or cold room during winter tend to struggle with sleep. They can find it hard to settle down to sleep at bedtime, and many will wake during the night as the outside temperature drops.. To sleep soundly, babies need warm clothing and sleepwear layers plus a safe, gentle heating device to create a cosy, comfortable sleep environment . For accurate, real-time body temperature monitoring, the CuboAi Smart Temp wearable thermometer is a reliable tool to help you determine the ideal sleepwear layers and room temperature environment for your little one during winter to keep them warm and cosy.
3. Night Lights
Many parents use night lights, hoping that they will help their baby fall asleep at bedtime and stay asleep throughout the night. However, night lights can disrupt sleep. It’s best for babies to sleep in a dark room from bedtime until morning.. The dark environment helps with the secretion of our sleep hormone, melatonin. Since babies don’t know time, maintaining a dark environment signals to them that it’s night and time to sleep. Establish a dark room for bedtime and overnight from day one so you’ll never need to change the routine later. . It will become what your baby knows and expects.
4. Late Bedtime
Naturally, most babies and children wake up at a similar time, usually between 6-7 am.. This often happens regardless of how late they are put to bed. Many parents put their babies to bed for the night too late. Typically the later the bedtime, the less sleep they will get, and the more tired and grumpy they wake up the next day. Babies need an early bedtime, ideally around 6 pm. The early bedtime allows for a long stretch of overnight sleep –with or without feeds, depending on their age. I think we can all agree on how wonderful it feels to get a long, restful night of sleep compared to a short one.
5. Too Many Changes
Lots of babies get sick during winter.When your little one is unwell, it can be very easy to fall into the trap of drastically changing how they settle and fall asleep at bedtime, throughout the night, and during daytime naps. If your little one has a mild cough, cold or fever but is otherwise okay, maintain their normal, familiar sleep and settling routine. The CuboAi’s Smart Temp can help you monitor your baby’s body temperature during sleep. The medical-grade thermometer is non-intrusive and offers accurate, real-time monitoring that provides you with peace of mind and equips you with the reliable information for early detection of potential health issues in your baby. Of course, if your baby is very unwell, consult your healthcare professional on the best treatment plan to nurse them back to health. But remember, babies need sleep more than ever when they are sick, as it aids in their recovery.
Written by registered nurse, childhood and infant sleep expert, Steph Gouin