Your baby sure has a pretty exciting life! The days keep him engaged as the unending lineup of visitors mollycoddle and play with him for hours. The evenings have him engrossed and amused as your partner gets back from work and entertains him with his funny antics. Even though your baby may spend a lot of time napping throughout the day, understand that he needs more rest than we adults do.
His wakeful periods will grow longer as he grows up, but at least during the first few months, you must be over-observant and cautious to notice the subtle signs that he may be tired. If your baby gets overtired, he will experience greater trouble falling asleep and will get extremely irritable and cranky.
To avoid such a situation from arising, here are five signs that will help you know that your little one needs to catch up on some sleep:
- He Shows Disinterest Towards Everything – When your baby starts finding even his most favorite toy or song on TV uninteresting, there are chances that he might be tired and needs some shut eye. This behavior when teamed with grunts and soft cries are sure shot signs of extreme tiredness.
- He Becomes Excessively Needy – Being tired often makes even the friendliest of babies agitated and clingy to their mothers. If your baby is tired, he will want you to hold him in your arms and may not even allow you to lay him down on the bed. To comfort himself, you will find him sucking onto his fists. He may also begin to cry. To calm him down, you can rock him gently and sing to him until he falls asleep, instead of distracting him with toys.
- He Jerks His Limbs – Another sign to suggest that your baby might be tired are his jerky arm and leg movements. You will find your baby’s limb movements a lot more sluggish as compared to how they are, normally.
- His Face Shows Signs Of Pain And Discomfort – If your baby’ face is displaying signs of agitation and pain, it could be because he’s tired. If your baby is grimacing and arching backwards, it means that it’s time to help him doze off!
- He Constantly Flutters His Eyelids And Has Difficulty Focusing – Though your baby cannot communicate to you in words, his actions say a lot. If you find your little one losing focus from things around, repeatedly fluttering his eyelids and rubbing his eyes, he’s quite certainly tired. When his playfulness gets replaced by a dreamy gaze, your angel needs to be put to sleep.
Tips To Prevent Your Baby From Getting Overtired
Now that you’ve understood the possible signs that your baby is tired, following are the ways to put him to rest, so he doesn’t get exhausted:
- Reduce Ambient Activity – Tired babies tend to get restless if the environment around them is not quiet. Ensure that you reduce the ambient sounds and activity so there’s reasonable amount of calmness. Put all of your baby’s toys away and switch off the TV. If there are people in the house, request them to talk softly, without disturbing your baby.
- Provide A Comfortable Sleeping Experience – Once you’ve ensured that the ambient environment is free of disturbances, provide your baby a comfortable sleeping experience. Take him to his regular sleeping place, close the curtains and lay him down on his bed. Cuddle him and sing him a lullaby he loves. Make sure the room is not too hot or too cold as even these factors can be a hindrance to peaceful sleep.
- Establish A Schedule – Though during the first few months, putting your baby to sleep may seem like a challenge, over the due course of time, it will get a lot easier. Remember that establishing a schedule is the key! Try to set a daily routine for your baby’s sleep timings, even though he may resist the same in the beginning. Along the days, he will get used to the set schedule and his sleeping habits will become consistent.
These signs and tips are sure to help put some of your concerns about your baby’s sleep habits to rest so that even you get to enjoy your share of sweet dreams!
Aradhana is from India. She is a veteran writer on topics concerning parenting, child nutrition, wellness, health and lifestyle. As a regular contributor to popular sites like Huffington Post, Natural news, Elephant journal, Thehealthsite, Naturally Savvy, Curejoy and MomJunction.com, Aradhana writes to inspire and motivate people to adopt healthy habits and live a stress-free lifestyle.