By now your baby is probably sleeping about 11 to 12 hours at night and napping twice a day for an hour and a half to two hours at a time.
Babies going through the sometimes painful teething process can be plagued by crankiness and loss of appetite, as well as bouts of wailing and gum gnashing. But, says sleep expert Jodi Mindell, it may just be a coincidence if your baby starts having trouble sleeping right as his new choppers are coming in. How so? Between 6 and 10 months â€” the age most infants cut their first teeth â€” babies are making huge strides in their cognitive and physical development. As they learn new skills such as sitting, crawling, and rolling over, babies get excited and can find it hard to take a break from practicing long enough to get a good night’s rest.
Some people believe that babies who co-sleep with their parents are more independent, more outgoing, and more confident as children. As adults, they have higher self-esteem, better stress-management skills, and are more comfortable with intimacy than adults who slept alone as babies. However sleeping arrangements on their own cannot make your baby into a particular type of person.
Comfort your baby to sleep. Rock him and lie down with him until you see that his face is motionless and he’s in deep sleep. You can also try moving his afternoon nap to an earlier time and making it shorter. Stick with your bedtime ritual and to be firm about going to sleep. Let your child know that when it’s bedtime, it’s bedtime. If it helps, try setting an alarm clock to go off about five minutes before it’s time to go to sleep – that way the mandate is coming from an external source, not you. If he wakes in the night, be flexible. Don’t let your baby cry it out; instead, try to find the source of his wakefulness (such as a full nappy, hunger, upset routines during the day, a stuffy nose, or even irritating pyjamas). Increase his daytime attachment to you (breastfeeding, wearing him in a sling, and so on and let dad play the role of nighttime co-comforter so both parents can help the baby fall back to sleep.
Teething is always uncomfortable, but some babies and toddlers feel more miserable than others. Episodes begin around four months of age and occur at intervals until age two or later. Babies are usually cranky or tearful, drool profusely, and feel a need to press their gums or bite down hard on toys. Sometimes a teething baby refuses to eat or nurse. The stress and discomfort of teething can lower a childâ€™s resistance to infection. Runny noses, rashes on the chin, spitting up of swallowed saliva, or mild diarrhea can occur without infectionâ€”but fever and symptoms of actual illness are not â€œjust teething.â€ Any illness needs attention of its own. Homeopathic remedies are a safe, non-toxic way to help relieve the pain and make the baby happier.
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