Infant Insomnia

Written by Christa Gatewood
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Insomnia in a baby is frustrating for both the parents and the child. Infant sleeplessness leads to sleeplessness throughout the household as often babies who can't sleep will cry from their frustration. There are many reasons for infant insomnia, and there are some methods that have been shown to lessen the problem.

Causes of Infant Insomnia

Some babies can't sleep because they are not tired. This is the easiest problem to solve. Instead of letting a newborn baby sleep all throughout the day, parents can play and stimulate the child. Keeping a baby alert during the day will make the child sleepy at night. That, however, is not always the cause of the insomnia.

Some babies can't sleep because they are distracted by noise in or near the home. There may be a noisy street nearby or active neighbors. If these noises are uncontrollable for the parents, there are products that can block out the noise where the baby is sleeping. Sound machines can block unwanted sounds by playing white noise, nature sounds, or lullabies. This provides a blank canvas of sound that is soothing for sleep.

Sound machines, however, should be accompanied by a good bedtime ritual to be truly effective. Beware not to over stimulate a child before bedtime. Establish a calming routine and use voices with low, soft tones when speaking to the child. The sound machine can run throughout this process and if desired, it can be set to automatically shut off. Put the baby down to sleep when there are signs of sleepiness, and if the baby doesn't fall asleep, try to keep him/her calm with gentle reassurance.


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