Welcoming a new baby into the world brings immense joy and fulfillment to a mother’s life. However, the first few months can also be challenging, particularly when it comes to getting enough sleep. When I first had Jeremiah, I was absolutely terrified of nights alone with him. He was colicky and it seemed like nothing I did helped him sleep. Instead, he was just cry more. I was desperate for a solution. As a new mother, it’s crucial to prioritize your well-being and establish healthy sleep habits for both you and your little one (This is something I took for granted). In this article, we will explore the benefits of creating a feeding and sleeping schedule and how essential oils can aid in promoting better sleep for both mother and baby.
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Establishing a Feeding and Sleeping Schedule:
After reading the book Baby-wise, I realized I lacked a sleep inducing environment for my baby. Though we had a sleep machine with White noise, we weren’t using it. We barely had curtains to darken the room, and A consistent feeding and sleeping schedule can work wonders for restoring a sense of routine and promoting better sleep for new mothers and babies. Here are a few tips to help you establish a schedule:
a. Observe your baby’s natural rhythms: Newborns typically feed every two to three hours. Pay attention to their hunger cues and feed them accordingly. As they grow, you can gradually increase the time between feeds and introduce a bedtime routine.
b. Create a soothing bedtime routine: Incorporate calming activities into your baby’s evening routine, such as a warm bath, gentle massage, or lullabies. These rituals will signal to your baby that it’s time to wind down and prepare for sleep.
c. Set consistent sleep times: Aim to put your baby to bed at the same time each night. Consistency helps regulate their internal clock and encourages longer stretches of sleep.
Utilizing Essential Oils for a Restful Night:
Essential oils have been used for centuries to promote relaxation and better sleep. When used safely and appropriately, they can be a valuable addition to your nighttime routine. Here are a few essential oils known for their sleep-inducing properties:
a. Lavender: Known for its calming effects, lavender essential oil can help soothe both mother and baby before bedtime. Dilute a few drops of lavender oil in a carrier oil, such as coconut oil, and gently massage it onto your baby’s feet or diffuse it in the room.
b. Chamomile: Chamomile is renowned for its calming and sedative properties. Consider using chamomile essential oil in a diffuser or adding a few drops to your baby’s bathwater to create a serene environment.
c. Ylang-Ylang: Ylang-ylang essential oil has a soothing aroma that can aid in relaxation and promote better sleep. Diffuse a few drops of ylang-ylang oil in your bedroom or mix it with a carrier oil for a gentle massage.
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Safety Precautions and Guidelines:
When using essential oils around babies, it’s important to exercise caution and adhere to safety guidelines:
- a. Dilute properly: Always dilute essential oils in a carrier oil before applying them to your baby’s skin. A safe dilution ratio is generally 1 drop of essential oil per 1 tablespoon of carrier oil.
- b. Choose high-quality oils: Ensure you are using pure, high-quality essential oils from reputable sources to guarantee their safety and effectiveness.
- c. Perform a patch test: Before applying any essential oil to your baby’s skin, conduct a patch test on a small area to check for any adverse reactions.
- d. Keep oils out of reach: Store essential oils safely, out of reach of curious hands, to prevent accidental ingestion or spills.
As a new mother, prioritizing sleep is crucial for your well-being and the overall health of your baby. By establishing a feeding and sleeping schedule and incorporating essential oils into your nighttime routine, you can create a sleep-friendly environment that promotes restful nights for both you and your little one. Remember to consult with healthcare professionals for any concerns or specific guidance related to your baby’s amount of sleep.