Simple Steps to Help Baby Sleep Through the Night So You Can Too

Let’s talk about baby sleep. Those nighttime hours are more than just a break for us – they’re crucial for our little ones. 

When my kids were babies, I found myself constantly Googling how to help your baby sleep through the night! Sound familiar?

If you want to help your baby sleep through the night so that you can get some sleep, too, you’re in the right place! I’ve been right where you are. Read on for a solid plan and lots of support. You got this. You’re on your way to a better night’s sleep for you and your baby.

help your baby sleep through the night so you can too. image of sleeping baby.

My hope is that these tips to help baby sleep through the night will give you some hope that the sleepless nights will end soon.

Baby Sleep Tip #1: Early Bedtime

Aiming for a 6-8 pm lights-out can be a game-changer. It lines up with getting our kiddos those golden 11-13 hours of shut-eye they need each night. Early bedtimes aren’t just about us catching up on our Netflix queue (though that’s a nice perk); it’s about syncing with their natural sleep rhythms for optimal growth and development.

An early tuck-in means they’re more likely to snag those longer, uninterrupted stretches of sleep. And we all know a well-rested baby is a happier, cozier baby. So, while every family’s routine might look a little different, this early bedtime window could be just the ticket for a smoother night for your little one (and maybe a quieter one for you).

Why is an early bedtime important for babies?

The first part of the night is prime time for your baby’s deep sleep, which is super important for their growth and brain development.

During the early hours after they nod off, babies get most of their restorative sleep. This is the time when their bodies are in high gear, repairing tissues and growing. It’s also when the brain does some of its most important work, making sense of all the new things they learned during the day.

As the night goes on, their sleep cycle shifts to include more REM sleep, which is the dreamy part. It’s still important, especially for memory and learning, but it’s that first chunk of deep sleep that really helps with their physical and cognitive growth.

Setting up an early bedtime routine can help your baby tap into this valuable sleep time. But remember, all babies are unique and some might naturally get more deep sleep later in the night. The goal is just to make sure they’re getting the rest they need to thrive.

Baby Sleep Tip #2: Consistent Bedtime Routine

Establishing a solid bedtime routine is essential for our babies. It’s not just about getting them to sleep; it’s about setting a rhythm that their little bodies and brains can rely on.

Consistency is key. A regular sequence of pre-sleep activities signals to your baby that it’s time to wind down. This recognition is crucial for several reasons:

Sleep Signal: A regular routine is like a green light for sleep. It helps babies shift from active mode to sleep mode, making the whole “falling asleep” part a lot smoother.

Comfort Zone: The same steps each night mean your baby knows what’s coming. This predictability can cut down on fussiness and help your little one feel snug and secure.

Cue the Zzz’s: With time, the routine itself tells your baby’s brain that sleep is near. Those familiar, soothing activities become a shortcut to dreamland, helping them nod off faster and stay asleep.

Body Clock Basics: A stable routine sets the stage for a solid sleep-wake cycle. Getting into a groove with sleep times can mean less night waking and more bright-eyed mornings.

Bonding Moments: Those pre-sleep snuggles, stories, and songs? They’re not just nice—they’re building blocks for your connection with your baby, filled with warmth and love.

Sounder Sleep: All this routine business translates to better sleep. When babies are calm and cozy, they can dive deeper into those important restorative sleep stages.

Healthy Habits: Starting these bedtime habits early can set a lifelong pattern of good sleep, which is a cornerstone of overall health.

So, while every family’s routine might be different, the goal is the same: a calm, happy baby who knows that when the lights dim, it’s time for some serious snoozing.

Remember, what works for one family might not work for another, but the goal is the same: a peaceful process that leads to restful nights for your baby (and hopefully for you, too).

I have a detailed post dedicated to establishing a realistic baby bedtime routine that will give you lots of great ideas as you decide what you want your routine to look like.

Baby Sleep Tip #3: Pause

I first learned about “the pause” in Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting. I thought it was interesting and wanted to try it right away.

When your baby makes a noise in the night, French parents don’t immediately run into the baby’s room. Instead, they wait a few minutes to see whether babies will settle on their own, a technique the author calls “the pause.”

French parents listen closely to their babies’ sounds, which helps inform them about when they really need attention and when babies are just making noises in their sleep. If it’s the latter, they let them settle on their own.

I learned pretty quickly that my baby was sometimes just “crying out” and not “crying.” Sometimes, she would settle herself down, and my going into the room would have disrupted that.

Baby Sleep Tip #4: Dark and Quiet Nursery

Let’s talk about setting the stage for your baby’s best sleep. A sleep-friendly nursery is like a cozy cocoon – it’s all about the right vibe for slumber.

Here’s how to make it happen:

  1. Embrace the Dark: A dark room is a sleepy room. Consider room darkening shades to keep out streetlights and early sunrises. They’re a game-changer for maintaining that nighttime feel.
  2. Sound Off: A sound machine can be a steady hum that drowns out the chaos of the world. It’s like a lullaby for their brain, telling them it’s time to wind down.
  3. Snug as a Bug: A good sleepsack is the cherry on top. It’s the cozy embrace that replaces blankets and keeps your baby warm and secure all night long.

A nursery that’s dark and quiet is more than just sleep-friendly – it’s a haven. It’s where your baby learns that night-time is for rest. It’s where they can switch off from the buzz of the day and recharge for tomorrow’s adventures.

And let’s not forget about growth and development. Quality sleep in a serene environment is like a nightly dose of wellness for your little one. It’s when their bodies do the hard work of growing up strong.

Creating this tranquil space is also about connection. In the quiet of a well-settled room, the moments you share are even sweeter.

For those interested in the nitty-gritty of blackout curtains and other sleep sanctuary essentials, dive into the details here. You’ll find out how to transform your nursery into a snug little nest that beckons sleep.

SEEYE Light Filtering Temporary Blinds Cordless Shades Fabric Pleated Fabric Shade Easy to Cut and Install, 48″ W x 72″ L – 6 Pack, White, with 12 Clips
  • High quality fabric: Our temporary blinds are made of 100% non-woven material – safe, non-toxic, breathable and environmentally friendly. It blocks most of the UV rays and harmful dust, providing a comfortable environment for the family. Better shade and durability than paper curtains.
  • Easy to install and cut: Our temporary window shades are installed in just three steps – cutting, tearing and pasting. It can save a lot of complicated installation tools such as drill bits. At the same time, it achieves no holes, no fixed, no trouble. And easy to disassemble and carry.
White Noise Sound Machine | Portable Sleep Therapy for Home, Office, Baby & Travel | 6 Relaxing & Soothing Nature Sounds, Battery or Adapter Charging Options, Auto-Off Timer | HoMedics
  • SIX NATURE SOUNDS: Nature sounds help provide a relaxing experience and a good night’s sleep by blocking out noises. This sound machine includes six nature sounds: white noise, thunder, ocean, rain, summer night and brook
  • NATURAL SLEEPING AID: White noise machines help create a soothing environment, and cover unwanted noises around you so you can fall asleep and stay asleep throughout the night. This machine is great for adults and babies
Woolino Merino Wool Ultimate Baby Sleep Sack - 4 Season Baby Wearable Blanket - Two-Way Zipper Adjustable Sleeping Bag for Babies and Toddlers - Universal Size (2-24 Months) - Earth
714 Reviews
Woolino Merino Wool Ultimate Baby Sleep Sack – 4 Season Baby Wearable Blanket – Two-Way Zipper Adjustable Sleeping Bag for Babies and Toddlers – Universal Size (2-24 Months) – Earth
  • #1 RATED and #1 SELLING merino wool baby sleep sacks in US and Canada since 2010. Creative Child’s 2018 Top Choice of the Year Award & winner of 2021 Cribsie Award and Mom’s Choice Award
  • REDUCE OR ELIMINATE SLEEPLESS NIGHTS – When baby sleeps better, so do parents. PREMIUM FABRICS for best comfort: Australian merino wool lining – 100% natural, luxuriously soft, and temperature regulating. GOTS certified organic cotton outer

Baby Sleep Tip #5: Dress for Success

Picking out the right jammies for your baby is more than just about the cute factor – it’s a big deal for their comfort and safety. Babies aren’t the best at keeping their own temperature steady, so the right sleepwear is essential to make sure they’re not too hot or too cold.

When it comes to safe sleeping, it’s all about keeping things simple and secure. Ditch the loose blankets and go for baby-safe sleepwear to cut down on any risk of getting tangled up. Safety first, right?

And let’s talk about comfort – if your baby’s not comfy, nobody’s sleeping well. You want soft, breathable materials that fit just right. A comfortable baby means more zzz’s for everyone.

Practicality matters too. Quick diaper changes are a must in the middle of the night, so sleepwear that makes this easy is a lifesaver. Those baby sleep gowns? They’re a game-changer for diaper duty.

Don’t forget about your baby’s sensitive skin. Choose sleepwear that’s gentle and won’t cause any irritation. No scratchy tags or seams allowed.

As your little one grows and starts moving around more, their sleepwear will need to keep up. Freedom of movement is important for those milestones like rolling and crawling.

And remember, babies can get attached to their sleepwear as part of their bedtime routine. It’s all about creating that cozy, sleepy vibe that tells them it’s time to close those eyes.

So, there you have it – finding the perfect sleepwear is about mixing safety, comfort, and a little bit of routine magic.

Read More About What Baby Should Wear for Sleep:

Baby Sleep Tip # 6: Hire a Sleep Consultant

If you’re so overwhelmed and feel desperate to get some sleep, don’t be afraid to call in the experts.  Seriously, you DON’T need to suffer through months (or even years) of being sleep-deprived due to your child not sleeping through the night. I am a person who finds it very difficult to ask for help, so if you’re feeling hesitant, I get totally get it. But you don’t have to be a super mom. Your baby needs to LEARN how to sleep, and there are experts out there who know exactly how to TEACH them. No crying it out is necessary!

If you’re ready for some help, there’s a program I want to tell you about that’s been used by a ton of moms to help their babies sleep – it’s called the Sleep Sense Program by Dana Obleman

This is the perfect program for you if:

  • Your child wakes up multiple times throughout the night
  • Your lack of sleep due to your child not sleeping it’s starting to take its toll on you
  • You have to rock, bounce or take a car drive for your child to nap or fall asleep at night
  • You’re frustrated, exhausted, and stressed out.
  • Your child needs a pacifier to fall asleep (and if it falls out during the night, YOU have to wake up to put it back in…)

If you want to learn more, read our review of Dana Obleman’s Sleep Sense Program. She covers ALL the details and answers all your questions so you can decide if you want to let Dana help you and your baby.

Bonus: Our Favorite Baby Sleep Resources


Online Courses/Consultants

Our reader’s top pick: The Sleep Sense Program by Dana Obleman, Professional Baby Sleep Coach

Other sleep coaches to check out:

ad for sleep sense by dana obleman

Keep Reading:

As a new mom, observing your baby’s sleep patterns and establishing a consistent baby bedtime routine can help promote better sleep for both you and your little one. If you have any concerns about your baby’s sleep or development, it’s always a good idea to consult with your pediatrician or a baby sleep professional for personalized advice and support.