Setting up a simple, consistent evening ritual will soon help your little one learn that bedtime is rest time.
From as early as 6 to 8 weeks, it’s a good idea to begin setting up a simple and consistent bedtime routine that suits both you and your baby. Try to start the routine at a similar time each day and follow the same pattern. Ideally, your baby will learn that bedtime is a special time for cuddles and attention, making them feel peaceful and ready to rest.
Getting ready for bed
The key here is to keep your baby’s sleep routine calm and relaxed. Start winding things down about an hour before you want to put your little one to bed.
To relax your baby, you can:
- Give them a bath
- Clean their teeth – if they have any! For young babies, you can gently rub the gums with a clean piece of gauze to keep them clean and healthy.
- Give them a last feed
- Read a story
- Sing a lullaby
- Cuddle them and give a goodnight kiss
What time is bedtime?
It’s best not to let your little one fall asleep too early in the evening – this can make them more likely to wake up during the night, and no parent wants more of that than is strictly necessary! A good baby bedtime is between 7 and 8:30pm; much later than this, and they may become overtired and cry.