The Calming Bedtime Ritual I Do for My Infant Son for a Peaceful Night Sleep
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My son Donovan just turned 6 months old last week. Since he was born, I tried my best to establish a consistent bedtime routine. I learned from my family members with children that it is best to stay as consistent as possible when it comes to a baby’s routine, especially with regards to their sleep. In the first two months of Donovan’s life, there honestly wasn’t much of a routine as he was waking every few hours to eat as a newborn. Once he hit around the 9 week mark, my husband and I transitioned him to his crib each night. From there, we built out a standard bedtime routine. Here are the things we do most nights with him to ensure he gets a peaceful night’s sleep:
Give him a warm bath with lavender bubbles and relaxing music
This one may seem obvious but he loves a nice soothing bath and the smell of lavender right before bedtime. This brand of bath bubbles is my favorite for his skin. I also play relaxing jazz or soothing music to wind down after the day. I also feel like the warm water also instantly puts him into “bedtime mode.”
Swaddle him in his hooded bath towel right after his bath
I lay the bath towel on the bathroom rug, lay him on top of the towel, and wrap it around him three ways. These are my favorite brand of towels for this. He stays nice and warm while I bring him over to his changing table to get his pajamas on.
I give him my famous, “mama massage”
I dry him off, lay him on the changing table and use my favorite hypoallergenic lotion brand ever for babies. I start by putting a little on his face and his hair before I brush it. I then rub the lotion on his shoulders, arms and hands, then his legs, feet genital area, and butt. I then rub his stomach and put him over my shoulder and massage his back and the back of his neck. He absolutely loves this and it really makes him super calm before bedtime. I then put his diaper on and dress him in his favorite— soft footed pajamas.
We spend some time in the glider and I give him his bedtime feeding
This is a special time for us because it is the last feeding of the day and it is a great way for us to bond after a long day. Sometimes I am home with him most of the day but usually I am at work full time and only spend early mornings with him and the evenings after I work. Since the daycare mostly feeds him during the daytime during the week, this is a special time for us to bond either by breastfeeding him or giving him a warm bottle of milk. I also turn off his lamp so this way he knows that after the feeding it is time for bed. I burp him, rub his back a little and we rock in the glider for a little bit longer together.
I put him down in his crib and turn on the noise machine
I lay him down on his side or his stomach (he only sleeps this way and has been turning over on his own since he was 2 1/2 months) and I tell him I love him, rub his stomach or back, flip on his noise machine (he loves the ocean waves sound) and I leave the room. The majority of the time he falls right to sleep within 30 seconds.
I’m hoping my tips and advice will help you with your little one too! If you have any questions, about any of the products I use for my son, feel free to comment below!