Are you expecting a little bundle of joy and looking for advice in planning your nursery? Or perhaps you are looking to revamp your child’s room to create the optimal sleep environment? Here are some tips to have everything in place so your baby’s room can be the perfect nursery and all you dreamed it would be:
- Think Cave Like
Hmmm cave and newborn, two words that don’t really work together. They do when it comes to sleep! A baby sleeps best in a dark, cool and damp room. Well not damp exactly, but its great to run a humidifier especially during winter months. The ideal sleep temperature for your baby’s room is somewhere between 65-70 degrees. I suggest shooting for 68 degrees. Also, make sure to include black out curtains on your windows. The darker the better.
- Toys Belong in the Toy Bin
Mobiles are cute and touted as a must have above your baby’s crib, but they are a distraction from sleep. When your baby is in his crib, sleep is our only goal. If a mobile was an intricate part of your nursery plans – consider using it as a decorative accent over your rocking chair or as a stimulating diaper changing activity over your changing pad. Your baby’s crib should be free of stuffed animals and toys including mirrors and light up musical toys marketed as soothing devices. Yes, that means no Glow Worms.
- Trade Your Lullabies For White Noise
We have all seen movies with babies drifting off to sleep with soft lovely music playing. That may work for Hollywood babies, but for real babies music played during sleep is a form of stimulation and doesn’t allow the brain to rest as it tries to process the information it is hearing. Instead, consider playing white noise that will actually aid your baby in his sleep. However, music played prior to bed, during your child’s soothing routine, is acceptable and has even been found to assist in the relaxation process.
- For Safety Sake
Remember that safety is always a priority when it comes to your child’s sleep environment. Yes bumpers look pretty, but they impede the circulation of air within your crib. And coordinating quilts look great in Pottery Barn Kids ads, but save them for your child’s first big kid bed. Your child’s mattress should be firm and your crib sheet should be fitted. The crib should also be free of all blankets and pillows. Instead of loose blankets, use a swaddle or a Zipadee-zip for your little one who still has a startle reflex and choose a sleep sack or wearable blanket for your older baby. These wearable items will keep them safe, cozy and warm.
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Amy Lage is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts Amherst and a Family Sleep Institute certified Pediatric Sleep Consultant. She is founder of Well Rested Baby (www.wellrestedbaby.com). She offers a host of services including in person, phone, email and Skype/FaceTime consultations that can be tailored to meet any family’s needs and schedule. Amy, her husband Jeff, their 4 year old Stella, their 2 year old Harley, and their two dogs Jackson and Cody live in Beverly Farms, Massachusetts. Please email her at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions. Be sure to follow WRB on Facebook too more great sleep tips!