4 Ways to Stretch Your Baby's Nighttime Sleep
4 Ways to Stretch Your Baby's Nighttime Sleep
May 24, 2022

4 Ways to Stretch Your Baby's Nighttime Sleep

Babylist editors love baby gear and independently curate their favorite products to share with you. If you buy something through links on our site, Babylist may earn a commission.
Pinterest logo.
4 Ways to Stretch Your Baby's Nighttime Sleep.
4 Ways to Stretch Your Baby's Nighttime Sleep

Baby sleep is one of the many wonderful mysteries of new parenthood. Some newborns fall asleep at the drop of a hat and stay asleep for long stretches. Others can wake up every other hour. While it might feel like a personal attack on your sanity if your baby falls in the latter category, the truth is most newborns don’t sleep through the night.

There is some good news, though. With a few tweaks to your baby’s sleep routine, you can create a sleep environment that could help them stay asleep for more extended periods. So we’ve partnered with Dreamland Baby—best known for making doctor-approved, evenly weighted sleep gear that helps babies feel calm and sleep better—to share some ideas that just might help you with your little one’s sleep. If you’re prepping for the nights ahead or are deep in the throes of sleeplessness, read ahead.

Re-do the Routine

A good night’s sleep starts well before you put your little one in their bassinet or crib. Babies are taking in a lot of new info during those first months, and if they’re too stimulated before bed, it could hinder their sleep. Find ways to help your baby wind down about 30-45 minutes before you actually want them to fall asleep, and stick to them. A consistent routine will signal that it’s time for bed so they’ll be primed for sleep by the time you put them down.

While you don’t have to do all of these things, here are some ideas:

  • Give baby a gentle bath before bed, followed by a soothing massage.
  • Read a book or sing soft lullabies.
  • Limit stimuli as much as possible, including lights and sounds. Blackout curtains make that easier.
  • Play soothing sounds during their routine—not just when you put them down—to signal that it’s almost time for bed.

Cue Extra Comfort

One of the primary reasons babies might not fall asleep (or wake up right after falling asleep) is that they’re uncomfortable. After all, they’ve just spent nine months in a warm, dark, cozy environment made specially for them. Weighted sleep sacks and swaddles like the kind made by Dreamland Baby are designed to recreate that same safe, protected feeling (much like a hug!).

The swaddles and sleep sacks are gently weighed from your baby’s shoulders to their toes. The weight is less than 10% of your baby’s body weight so they can move freely and it creates a comfortable, womb-like environment. The sensation feels like they’re being held, which can help reduce the stress hormone, cortisol and boost the serotonin and melatonin that’ll help them relax and fall asleep faster.

Here are some other ways to create a comfy environment:

  • The right temperature makes all the difference. Babies typically need one extra layer than we do to feel comfortable, however you don’t want them to overheat. Dreamland Baby sleep sacks and swaddles are breathable and made of 100% natural, soft cotton so baby doesn’t feel stifled.
  • Make sure their crib or bassinet is clear of anything like stuffed toys or blankets that makes for an unsafe sleep environment .
  • If your baby wakes up for a nighttime feeding, make sure to burp them before putting them back down to avoid discomfort from gas or spit up.

Limit Interruptions

Once your baby is settled down, try to limit how much you interact with them. It might be hard when all you want to do is look at their squishy, little faces, but be strong. Walk away or take that time to settle into bed yourself. This tip helps after your little one has fallen asleep too. You might want to wake baby for a nighttime feed or to check their diaper, but that could be overstimulating and make it hard for them to fall back asleep. To avoid this, stick to your feeding schedule, including a pre-bed feeding. As for nighttime diaper changes, there’s no need to wake them unless their diaper situation looks really dire or you’re noticing leaks.

Don’t Overthink It

At the end of the day, babies are gonna baby. On occasion, that might mean a few sleepless nights. Remember, you haven’t failed as a parent if your baby isn’t sleeping through the night. They’re new here, and they’re trying to figure it all out just as much as you are. In fact, losing some of that pressure might make bedtime easier for both you and your baby.

Sweet Dreams, Baby

Dreamland Baby’s weighted sleep gear evenly distributes a gentle amount of weight from your baby’s shoulders to to their toes to create a more soothing sleep environment. For babies, it almost feels like being held. While their swaddles are designed for 0-6 months, the sleep sacks can be used from birth to 36 months. Got a squirmy baby? The Dreamland Baby lineup doesn’t restrict movement, so your baby can safely move around while getting a better night’s sleep.

This article is sponsored by Dreamland Baby. Babylist’s free site, apps and emails are made possible by our sponsors. We limit our sponsored content to relevant partners that offer products and services we believe in and use ourselves.

This information is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. We do not accept any responsibility for any liability, loss or risk, personal or otherwise, incurred as a consequence, directly or indirectly, from any information or advice contained here. Babylist may earn compensation from affiliate links in this content. Learn more about how we write Babylist content and the Babylist Health Advisory Board.