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Baby Tips

As your baby grows…

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Initially, your baby will want to feed between eight and twelve times a day. This is because it has a very small stomach and can only eat a small amount at a time and – as you will become aware very quickly – it will process the food very quickly into its diaper. As he or she grows, however, so will their stomach and the time between meals will become longer. As a parent, the most welcome effect of this is that they will begin to wake less often in the night wishing to be fed. However, real life is never so simple, so you may have a few false starts before you eventually reach the stage where your child is not waking you most nights.

Part of this process is weaning your child. There will inevitably be some resistance from the baby in this respect. They have become attuned to being fed at a certain time each night, and a change in this routine will be an unwelcome one – they are babies after all, and the concept of change is in a lot of respects a completely alien one for them. Sooner or later it has to happen, and the best way to ensure it is a success is to schedule things so that they are fed shortly before you go to bed for the night – thus hopefully encouraging them to sleep through to the morning.

As your baby grows, you will find that they can eat more at one sitting, so take advantage of this by making each meal time more thorough and letting them eat their fill each time.

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Baby Tips

Your Personal Parenting Style and Your Child’s Sleep

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Good mothers and fathers come in many styles. Each one of us has different strengths, interests, and values that make us great parent.

Don’t let yourself become discouraged or disappointed when others ‘give you advice’ that doesn’t seem to mesh with who you are. Maybe you’re not a roll around on the floor kind of parent with your child.

Maybe you’ve decided to hang back and let your little one explore. That’s great! As long as it works for you and your child, nobody should be able to convince you that your method is incorrect or wrong.
Once you recognize and embrace your own personal parenting style, you can stop trying to live up to everyone else’s expectations and get on with the business of enjoying being a parent.

It’s important to keep in mind too, that these well-meaning advice givers don’t know your child as well as you. They aren’t there with your child night and day, watching him grow, learn, explore, play, eat, and sleep.

Only you know what’s best for your child, and you know what works best in your household and for your lifestyle. As with anything, figuring things out along the way will involve trial and error.

So when you receive yet another unsolicited piece of advice regarding your child’s napping or nighttime sleeping habits, keep both your and your child’s personal style in mind.

You’ve done the legwork, you’ve experimented, and you’ve learned together what works and what doesn’t work.

The cues should come from your instincts regarding your child and from your child directly. There’s no such thing as a hard-and-fast rule for sleep habits among children other than it is needed!

As your child grows, his cues may change, but as long as you stay in tune with him, his sleep habits shouldn’t have to suffer as a result. And neither should yours.

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Baby Tips

Taming a Tough Toddler at Bedtime

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Putting your toddler to bed can sometimes be an exercise in frustration. If you have experienced this, you might want to consider one of the following techniques to make bedtime a peaceful time.

Be consistent about bed times and waking times. Your toddler is more likely to respond positively if he’s used to a specified schedule. The earlier your child’s routine is established, the easier it is to put them to bed without incident.

Make the activities the same every night, and make the time before bed quiet and peaceful. Whether a parent tells the child a story, provides a bedtime snack, puts in a short video, or plays quiet games before putting the child in bed, consistency is the key.

Try not to lie in bed with your toddler until he falls asleep. This might actually have the opposite effect, and might encourage your child to stay awake, and ask for drinks of water and more bedtime stories. An alternative might be telling your toddler you’re going to complete a chore and that you’ll come back in and check on them in a few moments.

It’s most likely that the child will fall asleep while waiting for mom or dad to return. You might also want to talk about your child’s day with them. Keep your tone soft and quiet, and try not to excite your child in the process. Turning this into a nighttime story with your child as the main character is a fun option as well.

As the child grows older, if a consistent bedtime is maintained the task will become easier. The most important issue is consistency and repetition. If the child can expect the same thing every night, and these customary tasks are pleasant, bedtime can become a delightful family ritual.

If however, your child is continually resisting sleep, talk with your child’s pediatrician, as their might be a medical problem at the root of it.

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