Tips on Getting Your Newborn Baby to Sleep

new bald latin father at home exhausted and asleep while feeding his newborn baby boy with milk bottle sitting on a white couch at living room

One of the most trying parts of being a parent to a newborn is getting enough sleep – for both you and the baby. A newborn can sleep between 16 and 17 hours a day, but frequently wakes up every few hours for feedings. This is likely not conducive to the 6-8 hour nights of sleep you’re used to. Here are some ways to help both you and baby get enough sleep:

Follow a schedule as closely as possible. Many parents of older kids have established bedtime routines like teeth brushing, reading stories and then bed. This helps the child wind down and lets him or her know that it’s time to go to sleep. Follow a similar routine with your newborn with a fresh diaper change, some singing or reading and then lights out. It’s easier for the baby to tell when to sleep if he or she follows a nightly routine.

Act differently when it’s day versus night. When your baby wakes up during the day, play with him or her. Read to the child and interact as you would normally during the daylight hours. At night, put your baby back to bed after a feeding. Interact less and keep the lighting soft so both the baby’s internal clock recognizes that it’s time for sleeping. After a few weeks, this should help the newborn’s brain understand when to sleep.