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Bedtime routine at five weeks

(42 Posts)
Beewhisperer Sun 06-Nov-16 21:48:33

At the moment every night is different and I am starting to think that little one needs some kind of routine for bed. I have read so much conflicting advice and getting lo down is currently hit and miss.
Could you please share your routine with me?
What does before bed look like? Do you put down awake or asleep? Do you leave baby alone or all go to bed together?
Sorry for so many questions but am so confused.

orangebird69 Sun 06-Nov-16 21:51:46

I think 5 weeks is way too little for any kind of routine. You can try but don't expect it to last long if at all. At 5 weeks baby would still be in the same room as me until I go to bed.... Although trying to put down for naps/sleep, it's best to try and put them down drowsy but awake. I say this as the mother of a 1yo who still needs to be fed to sleep.

StrawberryLeaf Sun 06-Nov-16 21:54:45

I think it's a little early but you could always start doing a nice wind down routine, bath, massage, into clean sleep suit, quiet song and story, feed.

SoftSheen Sun 06-Nov-16 21:57:21

We didn't attempt any real routine at this stage. 5 weeks is so very tiny. Cuddle your baby, and let them sleep on you (or in a Moses basket downstairs) in the evening, and then take them upstairs when you go to bed.

Around 3 months old many babies become more settled and start sleeping better, and this may be a good time to start putting a routine in place, if you want to. However, current advice is that babies under six months should sleep in the same room as their parents, in order to reduce the risk of SIDS.

JohnLapsleyParlabane Sun 06-Nov-16 21:57:29

We didn't start a bedtime routine till about 12 weeks or so. At 5 weeks we were just hitting a period of evening cluster feeding that lasted a month so I just stayed on the sofa feeding her till about 10 most nights then we went to bed.

MillieMoodle Sun 06-Nov-16 21:57:31

DS2 is 7 weeks old. He goes to bed when I do, around 10/10.30pm. I always get him changed so clean nappy, clean babygro or pyjamas. We don't do a bath as part of his bedtime routine yet, although with DS1 I have never done a bath every night as his eczema gets quite bad.

Usually do milk too, but the last 2 nights he's not been due a bottle at bedtime. Usually put him on our bed while I get ready for bed. We've got a gro-light so the room is just light enough to see in and it's nice and calm. Put him in Moses basket either once he's had a bottle, been winded and had a cuddle (by this time he's usually asleep) or if he's not due a bottle then put him in after a cuddle, but he's awake.

Our routine has changed the last couple of days as he's not been due a bottle at bedtime. It's taken him longer to go off to sleep but he has been calm and settled in his basket.

Just do what works for you. I've never been overly bothered about having a strict routine for either of my boys, we just sort of fell into a routine that seems to work. I have found when they are very small, their routines will change e.g. when they have a growth spurt, so something might work for a few weeks then need tweaking a bit!

FATEdestiny Sun 06-Nov-16 22:28:13

5 weeks is still newborn.

By all means develop a routine of things you do at bedtime. But you will need to be flexible with the time for several months yet.

NHS SIDs recommendations are that baby stays in the same room as you at all times until 6 months. So while you are downstairs in the evening, baby naps downstairs. When you go to bed, take baby with you.

Beewhisperer Mon 07-Nov-16 13:11:23

Thank you for replying.
This is why I am so torn. I am inclined to follow the sids advice but lo does seem to struggle to settle with us in the living room on an evening.
I have friends who's dc have been put down in bed from 6 weeks and who swear by this now what their children are older. A few have used controlled crying but I don't think I could bring myself to do this while she is so little.
At the same time though she is struggling on an evening and I feel like she gets over tired.
Confused. confused

orangebird69 Mon 07-Nov-16 15:47:49

How are her days naps? Please don't even think about controlled crying until a least 6 months (if at all).

Beewhisperer Mon 07-Nov-16 15:56:57

She sleeps as and when she pleases. There is no real pattern to it as yet.
She is an absolute monkey for fighting sleep though and can easily become over tired.
I am not considering controlled crying. I think I would probably do most of the crying if this was the case.

NapQueen Mon 07-Nov-16 16:02:16

We did a routine from day dot with ours (now 2 and nearly 5), and baring illness they took to it easily.

We had a bath at 6pm; usually about 10 to 15mins all in. Into a now darker living room with lamps on and telly not too loud. Little bit of baby massage and into sleepsuit. A big feed usually around 6.30, then some lullabies while and after burping. Into a swaddle and down into the moses basket in the darkest corner of the room awake. Both then drifted off to sleep. Dd had a dummy, ds didn't.

We then woke them (or they roused) at 10.30/11pm for a bum change and a feed then into the bedroom and down next to us in the crib.

Beewhisperer Mon 07-Nov-16 16:04:29

Thanks Nap that's useful.

ElphabaTheGreen Mon 07-Nov-16 16:08:39

I find it barbaric that you have friends who have done CC with babies who are weeks old. Even if it 'works' now (ie they've successfully taught their baby that there is no point in crying because no one responds - the definition of neglect, basically), there is absolutely no guarantee that they'll still be doing it at three months, nine months or even three years.

Sleep is developmental. Some babies are able to sleep independently and with minimal support from weeks old. This is not a sign of a 'good' baby or brilliant parenting skills, it's just normal for that baby. Some babies are unable to sleep independently, or remain asleep for long stretches, until well past a year old. This is not a sign of a 'bad' baby or terrible parenting skills, it's just normal for that baby. In the end, they all eventually sleep.

I had both of my DSs in bedtime routines from days/weeks old. I was breastfeeding and shattered from hourly night wakings so hadn't the least desire to stay downstairs and watch TV, so I went to bed when they did around 7ish, with them in the same room as me. It really made no significant difference to their overall picture of sleep (highly dependent sleepers with frequent night wakings for 18mo-2yo each). I suppose the only difference it made was it eased the witching hour shrieks. As soon as I did bath, pyjamas, dim lights, boob, they calmed right down. It may possibly have cued 'night sleep' versus 'day sleep' for them as well as their night wakings, though frequent, were never lengthy the way reverse-cycling babies tend to be. But I am entirely willing to accept I got lucky in that regard I must have got lucky with something with the amount of sleep those little buggers robbed from me

When you say she won't settle with you downstairs...are you trying to put her down? Will she fall asleep on you then wakes when you try and put her in a Moses basket or peak? If so, the easy answer is: don't put her down. It's fine to let her sleep on you if that's how she sleeps best. She won't develop bad habits.

ElphabaTheGreen Mon 07-Nov-16 16:13:04

Oh, and five week old baby shouldn't really be awake for any longer than one hour max at a time. If you start looking for a yawn, crankiness or eye-running after 45 minutes of awake time, get her asleep any which way you can. She'll fight sleep less that way, you may have more success at getting her to sleep with less support and she may stay asleep longer as she won't be over tired.

(^^ This is filed firmly under 'Shit I wish I'd known with my first' grin)

Beewhisperer Mon 07-Nov-16 17:56:54

She will only really stay asleep in the evenings if I am doing the please for the love of god go to sleep dance around the living room. As soon as I put her down or sit down she wakes.
I do work to the 1 hour rule but she does not always.
Thank you again for your advice.

ElphabaTheGreen Mon 07-Nov-16 20:17:54

Keep up the dance for 10 minutes after she has fallen asleep (using a sling for this is ideal - you can dance/sway/rock or just do something constructive and have hands free then) then you should be able to sit as she will theoretically have slipped into the deeper phase of sleep then?

FATEdestiny Mon 07-Nov-16 22:18:12

As soon as I put her down or sit down she wakes.

Try a swaddle right around the shoulders and a dummy.

FATEdestiny Mon 07-Nov-16 22:18:38

tight*

RiverTam Mon 07-Nov-16 22:20:48

Struggling to remember that far back but it seems quite early for a routine (and controlled crying? Sorry, but your friends are cunts for doing that to a tiny newborn. Absolute cunts). Agree with swaddling.

Leicfox1 Wed 09-Nov-16 01:26:00

We started a bedtime routine from about 3 weeks, mainly because having a bath was the only thing other than bf that stopped lo from crying, and thoself few minutes of silence while he was in the water were heaven!

He would hAve a bath at 9.30pm (gradually brought earlier to 7pm by 4 months) and changed into fresh vest and sleepsuit for bed. Up to 4 weeks I was bf, so would bf lying down on the bed and he would fall asleep there (and i would go to sleep then). He would wake as soon as we moved him, so he slept in the middle of the bed in those days. After 4 weeks he was ff, so would have a bottle downstairs, rock to sleep, hold, then bring upstairs after 20 minutes and put to sleep in sleepyhead on bed (later moved into crib once sleeping in there was established). I would go to bed at the same time.

Swaddling never worked for us, but worth trying. Sleepyhead is stupidly expensive but worked, and was a lifesaver.

He's now 7 months, still has a daily bath before bed and loves it.

ErinMummy Wed 09-Nov-16 20:57:04

I'm a FTM to a 7 week old. We have a routine but I'm not sure it's a good one or setting me up for a nightmare in future but still. I know that my DD is probably too young for a routine but I figure if I start one sort of now she'll find it easier later when I try putting one in place. So from 7pm I try to avoid too much stimulation, no loud tv , no visitors, no bright lights, no going out and no loud talking. I've not got an evening feeding routine, she just feeds whenever she wants from 6pm (in day she generally feeds 7am, 10am, 1pm and 4pm - most days but not all!)
I take her up to my room any time from 6:30 to 7:30 depending on what I've been doing and keep all lights low and give her a massage with a lullaby playing, then change her nappy, put her in pjs, then feed her until she falls asleep (my aim is to feed her then put her in her crib slightly awake but not managed that yet!) put her in a swaddle and into her crib some time between. 8:30 and 9:30 and she sleeps until 1am ( she did get to sleeping through to 3/4 but I've lost that now somehow!) I myself need advice on how to change my routine so that she's not being fed to sleep but that aside - that's my bedtime routine for your interest!

Farfromtheusual Wed 09-Nov-16 21:18:35

I've had DS in a routine since he was probably about 2 weeks old (now 9 weeks old). Bath at about 6pm, massage in low lit room and a sing song and a cuddle, pjs, bottle, another cuddle and then bed by about half 7. He usually falls asleep towards the end of his bottle though so is normally put to bed asleep but he does sometimes wake up when I'm putting him down but he will always settle straight to sleep. He then sleeps very well and will wake once in the night (if that) now where he has nappy change, bottle then straight back to sleep. Then wakes up at about 7am. Pretty sure he will be sleeping through regularly soon.

I think having a good routine is important... me and DP actually have the evening to ourselves which is nice. During the first 2 weeks we had to eat in shifts as DS would always wake up as soon as we sat down for dinner, and it was driving me crazy. He's taken to it really well and I think the earlier you can get one established, the better.

Sunnydawn Wed 09-Nov-16 21:25:05

Aah, fond memories. smile

DS2 was very happy to have a wash/bath, feed, song and sleep at 7pm from 5 days old. He was unsettled between 2am and 6am, mind you.

DS1, on the other hand, had his own bedtime routine - feed, scream, feed, scream, feed, scream....from 4pm until 10pm when he was fall asleep, exhausted.

I think it is nice to aim for a gentle routine, and make the toddler years MUCH easier, but don't expect too much when they are tiny.

ElphabaTheGreen Wed 09-Nov-16 21:43:03

Farfromtheusual You, my dear, have won yourself a natural sleeper! for now Please acknowledge that it's not anything you've done, you've just got very lucky, or you'll turn into one of those smug mummies who is cursed by a horror non-sleeping DC2 and I cackle and roll about in schadenfreude

Farfromtheusual Wed 09-Nov-16 22:58:24

If you read my post properly, I haven't actually said it was because of anything I have done at all. smile

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