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when to establish sleep routine

(13 Posts)
appletiser Tue 14-Jul-09 23:13:48

when is it best to start? i read somewhere should start at 2wks but this seems too early.. and what do i do?

ches Wed 15-Jul-09 04:54:53

They don't start processing sequences until around 13 months old, so don't try to force something. When things start to settle down you'll find something that works and stick with it.

FlamingoOfTheShineyCult Wed 15-Jul-09 07:14:59

Never IMO. smile

They'll work it out naturally so long as you and your dp have fairly normal sleep patterns.

MajorMajor Wed 15-Jul-09 07:19:11

At about 4 weeks, I started a bedtime routine of bath, massage, feed then bed around 7pm. Worked very well for me!

BlueKangerooWonders Wed 15-Jul-09 07:24:49

depends on why you're doing it. If it's to get a structure into the day for you, MM's idea sounds right. If it's to get your baby to sleep better, you might be setting yourself up for a big shock and disappointment, so the other posters are right.

Crazycatlady Wed 15-Jul-09 20:41:24

Really depends on your own circumstances and your baby's temperament too. While they don't start processing sequences for many many months, a good sleep routine can still help create conditions which are helpful in settling a baby (and calming the parents) at the end of the day.

A routine needn't be long and complicated, but a short calm bath, a song, cuddle and feed in a darkened room is obviously going to be more conducive to sleep than having a baby awake, surrounded by the goings on of the household.

With DD, we were all over the place until about 5 weeks, then we started doing a bath, into pyjamas and quiet dark feed then put her down for the night at 7pm. She often wanted to feed repeatedly through the evening, but it got less and less pretty quickly once we established the bedtime routine. My gut feel is it did help DD to settle in the evening and to learn the difference between day and night. She has settled for bed very easily ever since. I have no other children yet as a point of comparison, but I don't think there is any harm in introducing bedtime routine as early as you feel ready, as long as you don't have too many rigid expectations of it being a magic panacea to sleep straight away!

grayal Wed 15-Jul-09 21:11:32

I started bedtime routine with both DD and DS at around 6 weeks. I always did the exact same thing, upstairs, bath or top to toe, warm massage, sang songs (twinkle twinkle, golden slumbers) fed and then bed. They both settled very quickly in the evenings after a few weeks and DD who is now 20 months has the same routine still (with books now) and goes to bed without any fuss every night. DS is only 4 months so still waking in the night but goes down a treat in the evenings too.

oneopinionatedmother Wed 15-Jul-09 21:16:20

don't worry about it

if you make daytime light bright and noisy and nightime dark and quiet - baby will hopefully sleep more at night than at day.

the routine kind of finds you imho, bath,feed and bed works well, if you like that. But whatever works for you : do that.

Bean74 Wed 15-Jul-09 21:19:15

I agree that it depends on the baby but we did DD1 from about 9 weeks & DD2 from 4 weeks. Must say was lovely to get evenings back!

appletiser Wed 15-Jul-09 22:48:50

hmm,, well firstly i read that kids do better with routine... and secondly i think it would be nice to have evenings back when hes a little older or when i am back at work. at the moment ds is only 3wks old - he feeds at roughly 4.30pm then again at around 7.30 or 8.30pm but tends to go straight back to sleep after the feed.. he seems to be more awake in the morning and early afternoon... will this change as he gets older for me to try the bath before bedtime?

ches Thu 16-Jul-09 04:28:01

All hell will probably break loose in about a week when he gets his next growth spurt. It's going to be constant change until he's approaching 3 months. wink

appletiser Sun 19-Jul-09 21:46:20

i think you are right ches... hes wanting more and more and more often and nights arent fun anymore!

nothingventured Sun 19-Jul-09 22:06:47

We started a sleep routine as soon as DD came home from hospital. Now at 20 weeks (actually, from about 13wks onwards) she knows when its bedtime.
We have the same routine each time and she starts to show signs of anticipation, eg. looking for her bedtime dummy etc.
I think if you want a nice bedtime routine start straight away - it won't always go to plan but will be working towards it and one day (sooner than you probably think) you'll realise that it has kind of all come together.

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