3 Tips on How to Get Baby to Sleep Easily (and Yourself!)

by Dagmar Bleasdale on January 27, 2009

how to get baby to sleep, DagmarBleasdale.com

How to Get Baby to Sleep Easily

I want to share some tips with you on how I help my son to go to sleep, and how I get more restful sleep as well:

1. Buy an exercise ball.

The baby has been crying for an hour, and you don’t know what else to do. We have all been there — sometimes it seems to take forever before your baby falls asleep.

I have a tip for all you tired moms out there: get an exercise ball! No, not for yourself to get back in shape (don’t we all have that goal . . . sigh) but for bouncing the baby to sleep!

To this day this is my foolproof method to get Landon to sleep: When he was little, I would sit on the exercise ball and bounce Landon to sleep while he was lying with his head on my shoulder.

If gas is the reason for all the crying, holding the baby with his or her back to your stomach, pulling the upper legs gently toward baby’s tummy while you bounce on the ball, will help get rid of the gas and quiet him or her down.

Also, there is something about babies’ inner ear I learned about in one of my breastfeeding classes — bouncing them helps with that and calms them down. Try it!

Now that Landon is older (two years and two months) and wants to wiggle out of my grip because he doesn’t want to go to sleep, I put Landon’s legs over my legs and have him face me — that way I can hold on to him if he fights me.

He might cry for a minute or two, but when I know he is tired, he will soon fall asleep in my arms while I bounce him. When I know he is totally out, I switch holding him so I have him lying on my forearms and can easily transfer him into bed.

2. Nurse lying down during the night.

If you are nursing, and I hope you do (it does get easier and will stop hurting once you learn how to properly latch on the baby, I promise!), don’t try nursing sitting up at night — you’ll be hunched over and miserable all night like I was the first two weeks.

Instead, try nursing lying on your side. This was tough for me at first, Landon didn’t latch on correctly, but then he got the hang of it and I got back my sleep.

Since then, when he wakes up, I nurse him lying down, instead of sitting up, reaching for the nursing pillow, and getting him all situated on the pillow. We both fall asleep just a minute later.

Sometimes I don’t even remember nursing him during the night, it is so effortless and has become such a part of our routine.

3. Sleep with an earplug in one ear.

One more tip: Try sleeping with an earplug in just one ear, and put the other ear on the pillow.

This way you can still hear the baby if he or she wakes up, but you can get sleep when some noise is bothering you.

I have also heard of mothers not being able to sleep next to or near their babies because they are making too much noise or snore!

I believe in the benefits of co-sleeping, so I find it unfortunate if co-sleeping is not practiced because of some noise the baby makes.

Of course, make sure to put the earplug into a save place when you are not using it so your child can’t find it and possible swallow it! This also works wonders if you have a snoring husband, by the way.

I hope these three tips will help you and your baby to get more restful sleep!

You might also like this post: Co-Sleeping is Safe — When Practiced Responsibly

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Monique March 29, 2011 at 6:55 PM

Love the single earplug suggestion… Wish I’d known this when I had my firstborn (who was a noisy sleeper – so I was totally sleep deprived in no time!) We co-slept and I might have been a much happier co-sleeping mom this way… Didn’t have this problem with baby #2 – perhaps because I was a more relaxed mom the second time around! ;-)


Jen March 12, 2011 at 8:40 PM

These are nice tips! Slow, rhythmical movement in any plane (up, down, or side to side) will produce a calming effect, although a baby’s threshold to the up/down tends to get higher and higher thus requiring more input to produce the calming effect. Rapid, irregular movement is an arousing stimulus to the central nervous system. Bouncing on the ball stimulates the calming effects through the stimulation of the gelatin-filled semi-circular canals of the inner ear. For maximum effect, side-to-side, slow rotation or swaying has a longer calming effect but does take a few more minutes to work initially! The baby also doesn’t seem to have the adaptive response to this motion (his threshold stays steady or actual lowers as the infants regulatory system begins to produce the calming effect internally).
I hope that is of interest!


Enith May 31, 2009 at 5:28 AM

I like the exercise ball tip! Great idea!!! :-)


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