Baby Sleeping Tips

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As mentioned before in my article Baby Safety, protecting your baby is crucial.  The environment in which your baby sleeps is part of this, so below are some baby sleeping tips that should keep your baby safe:

 

  • It is highly recommended to keep your baby in a cot bed with you for at least the first six months. SIDS research has shown that this significantly reduces the risk of anything unimaginable happening.

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  • Room temperature is very important, babies can overheat very quickly. Use a room thermometer to check the room temperature.  It should ideally be between 16-20ºC (61-68ºF).  Don’t forget to manually check your baby for signs of sweating.  The best places to do this are not the hands or feet, as many think, but the back of the baby’s neck or its stomach.
  • The sleeping position should be on its back. This is the safest position to sleep for a baby, not on its front or its side, as initially your baby will be unable to roll from front to back.  This should always be the case unless your doctor or consultant advises otherwise.
  • Always, always keep your cot bed out of direct sunlight. It can get very hot very quickly and this can increase the risk of injury dramatically.  For information on how to set up your nursery, please read my guide here.
  • Position your baby with the feet facing towards the foot of the cot bed. This will enable your baby to move slightly down beneath the covers.
  • For babies under a year old, it is very important that you do not use pillows or duvets. It is always best practice to use cotton sheets or blankets that are lightweight.  Have a look at my article on baby bedding for a guide on what is best for you to use.

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  • Always ensure that you have a dry mattress that is also firm and clean. Take a look at my guide to choosing a cot bed mattress to find out more.
  • When entering an indoor environment, make sure that you remove any headwear such as hats and any other extra clothing your baby may be wearing. Babies keep cool by losing excess heat from their heads.
  • Ensure that your baby is securely tucked up. This is very important as it is very dangerous should your baby’s head become covered whilst they sleep.
  • Many people dismiss the idea of giving a baby a dummy/pacifier to settle them. There is research that shows that when you settle your baby down to sleep, using such a method reduces the risk of cot death.  Do not do this if you are breastfeeding until your baby is about a month old.  This is to ensure that your baby latches on and is comfortable and established on the nipple.

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17 Comments on "Baby Sleeping Tips"

  1. I have 2 baby grandchildren now so these baby sleeping tips will come in very handy. One question, Lilly is 9mths now and is determined to sleep on her belly. She is very mobile and can crawl etc, is this position safe for her now?

    • Hi Kathy,

      Once a baby gets to around 5 months old, they will start to turn themselves onto their stomachs to find a comfortable sleeping position. At this age, the risk of SIDS is greatly reduced, but you can always roll them gently onto their backs if you see them in this position, but they will probably roll back as you cannot monitor them 24/7. I hope this is of some comfort – Martyn

  2. Wow i didn’t know that i shouldn’t put any headwear to my baby during sleeping. I thought its better to put them on. Thanks for these tips!

  3. Awesome tips. Thank you I’ll share your site with my sister, she has a new born.

    Good Job,

    Marcus

  4. This is such a wonderful article!

    I have never heard of a baby cot, so that is interesting to me.

    The under 70 degrees worries me a bit, could you explain this too me more? I feel like 70-71 is even pushing it and could cause pneumonia, but that is a matter of my opinion. Is 68 degrees a standard? I keep my place about 65ish, but I was planning to sacrifice when I have a baby.

    Kristie and I are trying to have a baby, so we’ll keep try and trying, and I am going to bookmark this page, because I can see the value in your tips :]

    Thank you!

    Chris

    • Hi Chris, most of the research here in the UK says that the optimal safe temperature is between 61 degrees and 68 degrees (16 – 20 degrees Celsius), but this varies around the globe. It does seem quite common that in the US for example, 65 degrees and 70 degrees (18 – 21 degrees Celsius) is the recommendation. As you can see there are a few degrees of margin in the recommendations, so a degree above or below that should not be too concerning. If you are uneasy, please see your practitioner for advice.

      I wish you and Kristie all the best for the future – Martyn

  5. Hi there!

    That’s a great article that I’m sure many people will find helpful.

    There’s always so much to learn, especially for first time parents, and your article sets out clearly some great advice.

    Keep sharing your knowledge

    Best wishes
    John

  6. Hi I like the information in the post. I would just add a few more headline and I like a little larger text. The viuals are good so you are off to a good start.

  7. Very nice… Thanks for all the remeinders. We sometimes forget the simple common sense things. Great information.

  8. Thanks for the great tips! Sleep safety is so important when babies are tiny newborns.

    Great work 🙂
    Nyla

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