Early Morning Walkings
Oh those dreaded early morning wakings!!! I’m not a coffee drinker but man when I get hit with a streak of early wakings from my little guy, I wish I was! There can be many reasons for early wakings but first off, if your child normally sleeps until a decent hour and the wakings start out of the blue, it may just be a phase that will last a week or 2. So, don’t panic! You may just have to ride it out. However, here are some things to consider and tips to try especially if it has been going on for a long time!
– Make sure your child’s room is DARK! It should be as dark at 6:00AM as it is at 4:00AM. During summertime, it gets light outside earlier, and even the slightest bit of light coming in can wake a child. Invest in some good black out shades or blinds. You may even have to double up with blinds and then black out shades on top.
– Try to keep your baby in the dark room until your minimum wake up time. Ex. 6:00AM. If you consistently get them up for the day and out into the light it can make your babies body clock and melatonin levels set to waking at the too early time.
– With an older baby, create a buffer before you offer the first feeding. If you get your baby out of the crib at 6:00AM, wait 5-10 minutes before you offer the first feeding. This creates just enough space that they won’t be waking in anticipation of the feeding.
– Make sure your baby isn’t cold. The body temperature drops around 4:00AM. Use socks or sleep sacks and warm jammies to keep your baby comfortable all night.
– If your baby eats solids, make sure they are getting solids with plenty of good fats and proteins throughout the day.
– Tinker with the bedtime. More often than not, the bedtime is too late so try a half hour earlier for a week or so. I know this sounds backwards but it may be that your baby is overtired. If this doesn’t work then try a half hour later than the original bedtime.
– Make sure your child is getting the right amount of daytime sleep at the right times for their age. Too much or too little daytime sleep can cause issues with morning wake time.
I hope your child’s early wakings are short-lived and that these tips are helpful! Hang in there, moms and dads. I’m sending strength your way!