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2.5 week old Falling asleep / starting routine!

(13 Posts)
elizabethy20 Thu 28-Apr-16 18:05:34

Hi all,
Wisdom for a first time mum greatly needed please! Hoping for advice on teaching little one to sleep when we say, rather than when she feels like it...

Currently she can be awake for 5 - 7 hours sometimes (thankfully this has been during the day... So far..) doing a mix of plenty of eating, contentedly being awake & crying... But I worry she gets over tired. I've tried watching for sleep cues, there isn't anything obvious I can see... We try rocking & singing her to sleep (not ideal I know...) But then often we put her down when we're sure she's asleep, & she's awake 3 minutes later!

How do we start a bedtime routine when we have no way of knowing if she'll fall asleep at the end? Does that make sense? We'd like to create sleep cues that we can control, but how do we link them to sleep when we have no idea if she's about to sleep.. Don't want to get into bad habits...

She only is sleeping about 12 hours a day currently, midwives say that's fine... & when she does fall asleep at night, she's sleeping a long time, which is great. But it's hard work when she demands cuddles / attention / food etc for 6 hours continuously in the day!!

Thank you all smile x

Diddlydokey Thu 28-Apr-16 18:13:40

So ideally her awake time is about an hour. Once she's been awake for 50 minutes, swaddle her, then cuddle to sleep doing shh-pat. I would also use a dummy.

The waking up after 3 minutes is the startle reflex which should be helped by the swaddle, as will the possibility of getting cold.

It is entirely normal for her to need a lot of help falling asleep and to hide the tired cues.

See this site for help.

Diddlydokey Thu 28-Apr-16 18:14:26

VinceNoirLovesHowardMoon Thu 28-Apr-16 18:15:31

She's very young! I don't think you can teach a 2-3 week old baby to fall asleep when you want or to have a routine.

InsaneDame Thu 28-Apr-16 18:15:54

Forget a routine until baby is 12wo, or 6wo at the very minimum - this is the earliest they can tell day from night. Read some of Sarah Ockwell-Smith's blogs. They are really interesting and reassuring.

TheTittifersHaveSungTheirSong Thu 28-Apr-16 18:27:25

We had a very loose bedtime routine around 3weeks- bath( when needed), lullaby playing when am changing ready for bed, white noise ( Ewan dream sheep) with milk in darkened room, story then place in cot. We did this the same time every evening (7pm) but in early days it definitely didn't mean that he went to sleep then!! Used to signal end of day and calm down but sometimes he would still be awake at 10 etc.
We stuck with it and he has been asleep at 7pm since about 8-10weeks, now 6months.

Coconut0il Thu 28-Apr-16 20:59:48

I wouldn't worry about a routine when she is so young. You can't cause bad habits in a 2 week old. Google the fourth trimester, lots of babies wake when they are put down, she just wants to be close to you. Nothing wrong with rocking/singing your baby to sleep if that's what she needs.
In the early days DS2 would stay downstairs with us of an evening, cluster feeding and sleeping on us. At about 3 months he started grumbling to go upstairs about 7ish and that's when we started a very loose routine. No bath as he gets too excited but upstairs, dim room, pj's on, quiet voice, bf and sing some nursery rhymes.

katiegg Sat 30-Apr-16 22:53:06

we introduced a bedtime routine when ds was about 2/3 weeks old. he had a bottle at around 4.30 - 5 ish, then the evening was quite a difficult period (very tired and cranky baby!) we bathed him at around seven, followed by another bottle and then one or other of us took him upstairs to settle him in his Moses basket or cot. Sometimes, he had fallen asleep before we took him upstairs and other times it could take an hour of cuddles, rocking etc to get him to sleep. But as the weeks went by, those nights became fewer and fewer. The first sleep of the night was always his best sleep. At the beginning, he would sleep 8-12, with other waking at 3am and 6am. Gradually the first sleep stretched until 1am, then 2am etc until he was reliably sleeping 8pm to 7am (admittedly, I think we got lucky here as it happened very early on!)

I know people say they can't tell the difference between day and night when they are so young and you just have to roll with it, but I think it is very possible to introduce a bedtime routine early on, and if you are consistent about it, they learn to associate that with going to sleep. I'm pretty relaxed about most of ds's routine, but I'm a stickler for bedtime routine. He is 16 months now and I could count on my fingers the number of times he has been put to bed later than 8pm.

Whatever you choose to do as your bedtime routine, my advise is be consistent. it's tough going, especially at the start. There were nights at the start when ds struggled to settle in his cot and it would have been so easy for us to bring him back downstairs and continue our evening. But we made a conscious decision to teach him a bedtime routine. Also, don't be afraid to let your baby 'grumble' in her cot for a few moment. I don't mean let her cry, but ds was very noisy when he was first put down - lots of sighing, groaning, fidgeting etc! I discovered one night when I badly needed to pee that he could sort himself out and the noises were just him getting comfortable smile

StepfauxWife Sun 08-May-16 21:05:01

I've got a 6 week DD2 and we're just starting a loose bedtime routine. We do feed, bath, massage and then bed by around 7pm. It often takes a couple of hours to actually get her to sleep - putting her down awake doesn't work and she wakes up the second we put her down in the cot.

It's infuriating and I miss having some time to myself in the evening but I'm hoping that by being consistent that she will learn to recognise the cues and go to sleep. Fingers crossed.

At 2-3 weeks, we were just going with whatever she liked. Her longest sleep would be from 10pm.

So I would hand tight for a little longer and then work on a bedtime routine from the 6 week mark.

heyhulahoop Mon 09-May-16 08:43:09

She's 2.5 weeks! She's meant to sleep when she feels like it, I wouldn't bother with a routine until about 12 weeks, it's probably futile and will just stress you out.

JonSnowsBeardClippings Mon 09-May-16 09:10:59

6 week olds don't respond to routines either, hence why it takes you hours to get yours to sleep!
'Infuriating' - you have a new baby. What did you expect?

TitusAndromedon Mon 09-May-16 09:23:25

I echo the others when I say that, at 2.5 weeks, your baby is just too little. I know it's hard when you're in the moment, but just enjoy having your baby snooze on you in the evenings. It's where she wants to be, and I agree with the advice that you read about the fourth trimester.

We did start a bedtime routine with our twins around seven weeks, and now, at nearly six months, they settle for bed nicely at seven every night. But you can start the bedtime routine whenever your baby shows signs of tiredness, rather than at any particular set time. So, you can do bedtime when you go to bed.

I didn't worry about any bad habits until very recently. It all went so wrong at the four month sleep regression anyway, so we kind of started fresh once that passed. Just enjoy those lovely newborn cuddles and work in routines and habits once she's a bit older.

heyhulahoop Mon 09-May-16 11:01:08

Yeah if the bedtime routine is taking 2 hours she's clearly not ready for one, stop and try again in a few weeks (it will still probably be too early but if you insistwink), don't try and force these things it's no good for anyone.

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