For optimum sleep keep your baby’s room cool, dark and quiet.
Sounds obvious right? But 99% of baby’s nurseries I visit are often perhaps only 1 of the above and most commonly none of the above.
This is something I speak of often, and once you set your baby’s nursery up to be all of these three things, you’ll get it and understand why I harp on about it so much. It then also might seem obvious to you, but sometimes, in our sleepy haze, we can miss the small things which are often actually the big things.
Cool: I live in the U.K. Right now It’s Winter, and it’s cold, and while I long for the Summer and sun-filled days, actually this kind of weather is great for keeping your baby’s room cool and at the ideal room temperature.
It’s much harder to cool a room down in the middle of Summer than it is just to add another layer of clothes to your little one if her room gets too chilly.
It’s also much easier for babies to fall asleep and stay asleep when their room is cooler than when their room is hot, uncomfortable and stuffy.
A cool room will also help your baby produce Melatonin (the sleepy hormone). A room which is too warm will inhibit sleep.
18-20’c is the ideal temperature for your baby’s room.
Switch the heating off in your little one’s room, and instead, if necessary, add a vest under her pyjamas and/or put your baby down to sleep in a warmer sleeping bag.
Having the heating on can also make the air very dry causing a little one to be more thirsty, which means more wake ups and more feeds. Add that to a baby who feels hot and stuffy during the night, and you are likely to experience challenging nights.
The best type of material to clothe your baby in for sleep is 100% organic cotton. It’s breathable and soft on baby’s skin. It’s also passed through several processes to remove germs and bacteria helping to prevent dust mite growth. It helps absorb moisture from your sleeping baby, keeping them dry and comfortable, helps regulate their temperature and gives them a sense of comfort.
Cut any labels off which could aggravate your little one.
Dark: Light stimulates a baby’s eyes to tell them it’s time to wake up.
If you are affected by light at all during the night or when taking a nap, you’ll fully understand how this can affect your little one. Use blackout blinds on the windows to make your baby’s room very dark.
Often it takes a little DIY to achieve the desired results you want of an entirely blacked out window, but the results far outweigh your efforts.
Remember that you should open the curtains and blinds each morning and again after nap times, you should never permanently black out your baby’s window.
Denise O’ Dwyer, Feng Shui specialist says: ‘The right levels of light and darkness are important to balance the Feng Shui of your Baby’s bedroom. At night we want the room to be darkened to support the Yin activity of sleep. During the day, pull back the curtains as far as possible to let in maximum Yang daylight. This fills the room with new energy which restores your Baby while she sleeps throughout the night’.
Place a rolled up towel or blanket outside the foot of your baby’s door to block out any light streaming in.
Make sure no visible lights are coming from electrical appliances, such as the baby monitor, and cover any lights which could disturb your little ones sleep.
Avoid leaving night lights or any other lights on in the room such as clocks or devices which check the temperature and act as a night light too. The darker, the better, for naps and for night time.
Quiet: The other two factor are the easier ones to control, this one is more challenging as many of us lives near busy roads, tube and railway lines, parks, schools, under a flight path or have noisy neighbours. None of these are helpful in keeping your baby asleep for longer. All of these can and probably do wake your baby up from naps or nighttime sleep. As well as outside noise, your inside household noise can wake a baby just as easily.
This often can’t be helped, but what you can do is use White Noise to mask or counterbalance inside/ outside noise throughout naps and nighttime which may be waking your baby. Other sounds which might wake your baby are noisy boilers, banging doors, scraping chairs, the clanging of dishes while you cook and tidy up, the list goes on.
White Noise is repetitive and calming, often mimicking sounds of the womb, which can be incredibly soothing and help babies stay asleep for longer.
Of course, there are many reasons why babies wake but these three little seemingly harmless factors are often at least one of the reasons why babies battle to fall asleep for both naps and at bedtime, wake too soon from a nap or wake frequently through the night.
It’s easy to think you’ll get around to setting up your little one’s room someday in the hopes this will help. If you are serious about your sleep and your baby’s, give it a try. There is no time like the present, and you are likely to be richly rewarded for your efforts. You have nothing to lose and sweet zzz’s to gain.
To find out more about how I can help your baby sleep well with love, kindness and the utmost respect, contact me here.
With love and sleepy vibes,