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Routines and when to start(11 Posts)
DS is 2 weeks old on Sunday so still quite young but looking for some advice on when you started a bed time routine with your children?
Also what did you do and what time did you start and put them down? Does it help them to sleep better through the night? Just hoping to hear people's experiences. 😊
I would start as soon as possible even with just a basic routine, for you as much as them.
From about one month we did the following:
Wind down/quiet time from 5pm
Bath at 6pm
Massage, clean nappy and into PJs
Feed & cuddle
Into sleeping bag (once big enough)
Into snuzpod 7pm ('drowsy but awake' if possible, didn't always achieve this!)
For the first few weeks we didn't have such a routine, but literally the day we started this we got a baby sleeping anywhere from 5-8 hours for the first stretch. Before that it had been 2 max.
It's all gone to shit since we hit the 4 month regression but sticking to the routine in the hope it improves eventually...
I didn’t start the classic bedtime routine of bath, story, feed until about 6 months old. During the newborn phase there’s no way I could’ve given DD a bath every night. It wound her up way too much.
It can work to just go with the flow. In the first 3 months, when it got to early evening I’d give DD a wipe round with a flannel, into a clean baby grow and feed her in the dark before putting her down. The time varied a bit. By 4 months old she was clearly ready for bed by 6pm so that’s what I’d do. She’s a great sleeper now so not forcing a routine in the early weeks has had no detrimental effect. I would always keep night wakings quiet and dark. Good luck!
Honestly , with my first two I didn't put them in a routine at all. I let them find their own and followed their lead. One slept through at 11 weeks and the other at 24 months. One liked to be put in their cot at 10pm , the other at 7pm.
I will do the same with my five week old. Until he's big enough to self settle and take larger quantities of milk he will stay with us and sleep in the living room until we go to bed. We'll wait patiently and see how he gets on , there's no timeframe I wish to force.
From when she came home I would do the last feed at 10.30 in the dark and settle her down in the Moses basket after that but I didn’t start a proper bedtime until about 4 months.
I started it then because at that stage she was really unsettled in the lounge with us and couldn’t sleep with the lights and tv on. I bath her at 7 every other night then change into pjs and sleeping bag then bottle at 7.30 and bed. I would then do a dream feed at 10.30 until she dropped it. I don’t know if it helped her sleep through but having a couple of hours to myself or with my OH made a massive difference to us
My DD is nearly 4 weeks.
From about 2weeks on we have tried, and not always managed, the following:
DP and I have dinner around 5pm and from there onwards it's "stay awake time" with quiet activities like tummy time. Normally done by DP so he can spend time with her after work.
DD has a bottle around 6pm
We then try to have her in the bath/washed for 7:30pm and into PJs for 8pm.
DD then has bottle around 8:30pm which we do in a dimmed light area with no TV etc. A little time after for cuddles.
She is in bed around 9pm but mostly lies and watches her light projector. This is self soothing time.
Next bottle is 10:30pm and she is cuddled, swaddled and laid down for the night. DP and I normally closely follow so the room is completely dark and quiet.
She usually wakes around 12:30-1am, 3-4am, 5:30-6:30am then up at 9:30am*.In these times she is picked up, fed half her bottle, changed and cuddled/burped, given the rest of the bottle, swaddled and kissed then it's back to bed with her night light OR light projector depending on how awake she seems. Once 9:30 hits I make sure to get her up, open the curtains and get some noise going and talk to her while feeding/changing then it's clothes time and into the living room for the day.
*she recently started missing out the 12:30-1:30am feed by herself and will sleep through this. We started giving her water throughout the day with her feeds and offering a extra oz of feed at 8:30 and 10:30
She naps in the living room throughout the day without much routine but does have a area where she goes when she gets sleepy.
My DD is 11 weeks and has been in a routine since 1 week.
7pm nappy off time followed by a bath
745-8pm ish bottle
Will stay asleep until either 3am or 5am and then goes straight back to sleep after her bottle until 7:30-8am. Only the odd night she has woken up at other times and will go back to sleep.
I think the kicking about on nappy off time and the bath helps!
We started at about the 6 week period of bath, bottle and bed at about 7:30pm. She was put down after her bottle, whether she was awake or drowsy and left to fall asleep herself. Worked a treat and she was sleeping right through until about 4am. At this stage it was a middle of the night feed and back in the cot until about 7:30am.
At any stage when she regressed, we kept the nighttime routine always the same, even when that meant she had to self soothe herself ( and there were long periods of this but we persisted) She's 21 months and gets put to bed at 8:30 awake and sleeps right through until 8:30 the next morning.
Do what you feel is right, but persist. Keep it the same no matter - let them know this is how it will be and they will adapt and learn and understand their nighttime routine.
I wouldn't even be thinking about it yet unless something is just coming naturally to all of you. I would say we started to get into a routine from 2-3 ish weeks. But it wasn't like a 'bedtime routine' in the strict sense. We just started to have a pattern of when she would have her bath (not every day), early evening feed, then she would go to my dh and go in the wrap to sleep with him while I took myself to bed for a few hours. He'd bring her to me for a feed when she woke, usually around 10-11pm and then I'd go back to sleep and he'd take her back downstairs to sleep on him til closer to 1am before he came to bed (then I'd take over and do the rest of the night). That's probably not what you're talking about though.
We didn't intentionally develop a bedtime routine per se until 4 months. Then she had a bath and I'd lie down in bed with her and read a story, she'd have her milk, and then would go to bed, usually about 6:30pm. That transition to going to bed on her own (not in a wrap) was a smooth one, but I think because we didn't force it before it was time and she was already used to going to sleep around that time.
She generally slept well with a couple wakings for feeds, but I don't think that's because of our bedtime routine. I think it's because we fed her quickly and got her back to sleep right away and we co-slept.
OnNature (hello! And congrats by the way!!!)
Your 4 week old manages to stay awake from 5pm - 9/10pm?!! How on Earth! My 8 week old still struggles to stay awake for more than 90 mins. I really want to put him to be at 8pm, but no chance. He usually sleeps until around 5/6pm in a sling. Even if he gets up at 6pm, he's still pretty much ready for bed by 7pm at the latest. Once he's awake, it's bath, feed and back to bed or we end up with screaming galore 😱
OP, now at 8 weeks we're starting to try and steer DS towards a loose routine. He picked his own 7pm bedtime, so by 6pm we dim lights, bath, feed, swaddle, dummy, bed. Day time naps are all over the shop and depends where he is. I'm trying for 1 hr morning nap, 2 hr lunch nap (ideally in cot), 1 hr afternoon nap. But this isn't really working yet at DS can't stay awake the full 2 hrs in between for this to work. Also lunch nap in crib never lasts two hours without waking/resettling - but if he's in the sling, he'll conk out for 3 hrs!!! I mainly aim to make sure he's not overtired or all hell breaks loose!
Yes, it's a struggle but we manage... Even if DD is half asleep we count it as awake lol. She sleeps constantly the rest of the time, it a big nap with feeds in between. It's hard working out their schedule. They are nocturnal mostly lol. Xx
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