Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Part 2: Tips to Ease the Transition of Baby into Her Own Room

Charlotte, 5 1/2 months
In our last post, we wrote about current practices and recommendations for sleeping locations of infants. It doesn't matter if you are a first time mom or an experienced mom, or how old your baby is, transitioning your baby into her own room will be an adjustment for the whole family Today, we have a few tips that may help make the process easier!
  • As with any transition, change takes time. Don’t expect your baby to fall asleep easily in your room one night and just as easily in his own room the next night. Being patient as your baby gets accustomed to his new space is important!
  • Take small steps toward a gradual transition into the new location. For example, if your baby sleeps on a sleep surface other than a crib, like in a bassinet, start by moving your baby’s crib into your bedroom and having him sleep there. After your baby gets used to sleeping in his new crib in your room, then move the crib into his room. Another option is to start the transition by having your baby sleep in his new room for daytime naps only. After that is going well for a while, try having him sleep in his room for bedtime too.
  • Keep in mind that any change in routine (and transitioning to a new room is a big one!) can affect your baby’s sleep patterns, potentially causing more night awakenings for a short time.
  • Be consistent; older babies like routines! It’s important to be consistent with your baby’s bedtime setting as well as his bedtime routine. For more about routines, click here.
  • While you are trying to be consistent, it’s also important to be realistic. Things will happen that will be out of your control. Your baby may get sick and be in your room for a few days until she is feeling better. That’s okay! You can get back to your usual routine when she is back to feeling better.
  • It’s not unusual for older infants to wake more than usual once in a while. She may have separation anxiety or be conquering a new physical milestone. For a list of reasons why older babies may wake more sometimes, click here.
  • It’s not uncommon for some older babies to resist being placed back to sleep in their cribs after awakening during the night. For an explanation of why this happens, click here. For solutions, click here.
  • Wait until your baby is in quiet (deep) sleep before transitioning her from one sleeping place to another, such as from your bed or your arms to a crib. Older babies can enter deep sleep more quickly than younger babies, but always look for signs of deep sleep before lying your baby down to sleep.
We hope this information has been helpful! Making a big change, like moving your baby into her own room, is a big milestone and it is important to do what is best for your family. We’d love to hear your stories and tips about how YOU transitioned your babies into their own rooms too!

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