Baby Sleep | Fit Pregnancy

Baby Sleep

Scheduling Nap Time

Scheduling-Nap-Time

Look to your baby for his evolving schedule after about three months; before that, anything goes. "You don't have to be rigid," says Jodi Mindell, Ph.D., associate director of the Sleep Disorders Center, Children's Hospital in Philadelphia and author of Sleeping Through the Night: How Infants, Toddlers and Their Parents Can Get a Good Night's Sleep, revised edition (HarperCollins). "But some structure helps both parents and baby. By 9 months of age, most babies naturally move to napping at around 9 a.m.

Co-Sleeping

Co-Sleeping

You should anticipate the future, according to Jodi Mindell, Ph.D., associate director of the Sleep Disorders Center, Children's Hospital in Philadelphia and author of Sleeping Through the Night: How Infants, Toddlers and Their Parents Can Get a Good Night's Sleep, revised edition (HarperCollins). "If you want the baby in his crib by a year, the best time to start making the change is at 3 months of age—before habits are firmly established," she says. That said, small steps are best. "Take a week—or several—and do the baby's bedtime ritual in his room," Mindell says.

Your Feelings Can Affect Your Baby

Your-Feelings-Can-Affect-Your-Baby

"Definitely," says Jennifer Waldburger, L.C.S.W., co-owner of the Los Angeles-based consultation service Sleepy Planet. "Babies are sensitive to a mother's cues. If you're not sleeping, you're more tired and stressed and your baby picks up on those vibes."

Study Highlights Co-sleeping Dangers

A new year, a new study about babies and sleep: Federal health officials report that infant deaths blamed on accidental strangulation and suffocation in bed have increased sharply in the U.S., The New York Times reports. The news has reignited a simmering debate over the rising number of parents who sleep with their babies, also known as "bed-sharing" or "co-sleeping."

How to Calm Your Colicky Baby

Now that you know The Truth About Colic, check out pediatrician Harvey N. Karp's "Five S's"—which simulate the womb's environment,  and turns on Baby's calming reflex, helping her sleep longer. Tip: Practice with a doll or sleeping baby.

Swaddling Wrap the baby securely in a blanket with her arms tucked inside so she can't flail.

Side/stomach position Hold the baby snugly in your arms on her left side or stomach.

Co-sleeping Debate Goes On

Two new reports on co-sleeping with a baby were released this week, adding to the confusion that seems to dog this practice.

Fans Lower SIDS Risk

A new study has yielded another clue on what causes the tragic deaths of seemingly healthy infants. Researchers in California indicate that circulating air in a baby's nursery helps to lower the risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). The latest information, published in The Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, further points to a baby's sleep environment as crucial in the risk and prevention of SIDS. In the study of 185 SIDS cases vs.

Battle of the Baby Sleep Experts

A bumper crop of new sleep books has joined the old standbys, offering philosophies and techniques to fit every parent's and baby's needs and temperament. The tricky part is finding the perfect fit for you. Here is our guide to 10 baby-sleep guides, old and new:

Q & A: What Parents Want to Know About Baby's Sleep

Q: How much sleep does a newborn baby actually need?

Sleep Close

It's natural to want to be near your baby 24/7. But experts have differing opinions when it comes to sharing your bed with an infant. "We don't know how to make bed sharing safe," says pediatrician Rachel Moon, M.D., a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics Task Force on SIDS, which recommends not bed-sharing as a way to prevent SIDS.

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