Playing in the Crib Instead of Sleeping – What Can We Do About It?

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Parents put their babies in their cribs hoping they will fall asleep, rest, gather energy for the following day, and at the same time allow them to get some shuteye too. In an ideal world, babies fall asleep in a couple of minutes, but this world is not ideal. If they are not crying, they are playing, laughing and/or simply not wanting to sleep. Too much downtime in the crib can be harmful to the babies’ sleep, so it is important to find a way to deal with it. In this article, we’ll get to the bottom of all factors impacting babies’ sleep, and try to figure out how to create the ideal conditions for a good night’s sleep every night.

Don’t make the nursery over-stimulating

Parents sometimes get overly enthusiastic when it comes to designing the nursery and they make it too colourful. Wanting to make your baby’s room cheerful is understandable, but introducing too many visual stimulants can disrupt your baby’s sleep. Installing lights with dimmers is a good idea since then you can adapt the lighting to various activities ranging from playing to sleeping. Soothing paint colours (e.g. pastels) and window treatments are also good ideas.

Create a bedtime routine

Babies react well to routines, and if their sleeping schedule is a mess, it will be more difficult for them to fall asleep even if they are exhausted. Establishing a routine can be difficult in the first couple of weeks and it will take a lot of patience, but once you get there, it will be rewarding. Having various repeated activities prior to bed, such as bathing, reading a story or singing a song can help in this.

Make sure the crib is comfy

Choosing a good mattress is not only a matter of comfort. Mattresses support developing babies and keep them safe. It is best to opt for organic mattresses, because they are made of all-natural materials, including wool, cotton and coconut fibre. These mattresses are more expensive than conventional ones, but at least you don’t have to worry about your baby developing allergic reactions or being in contact with dangerous chemicals.

Choose the bedding carefully

Besides the mattress, you want to get your baby the best cot bedding available that is comfortable, safe, and induces quality sleep at the same time. Most frequently, cotton is the best choice you can get, especially for sheets and covers. Include only the necessary bedding: a pad, sheet and blanket (or sleepers), and get rid of pillows, cushions and stuffed toys, which are not only a distraction but also a potential hazard.

Try some white noise

Infants are accustomed to listening to the sound of the womb, so it is no wonder they find it soothing and secure. A completely quiet room may be a great environment for adults to fall asleep in, but for babies, it can be intimidating. A white noise machine that emits rainforest or ocean sounds helps the baby realize the difference between day and night and eases their transition to sleep. Just make sure you don’t use the same noise when it is not bedtime, so you don’t confuse the little one.

It’s all just a phase

Finally, you shouldn’t stress even if your baby can’t fall asleep right away when you put them to bed. You are not doing anything wrong. Some babies are just going through that phase, and it is harmless if it’s going on for only a few days or a week. You can’t force your baby to go to sleep. Baby’s body knows when it has had too much and when it needs rest. If you have done everything else “by the book”, your baby is the one with the job of falling asleep.


About The Author

Brigitte Evans is a cosmetic skin care consultant and writes at She is guest lifestyle blogger at My Montessori Store.


Disclaimer:  Unless explicitly stated in the post itself with a My Montessori Store logo or direct mention, the content and images used in the post are provided by the post author and have been used as such.

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