How to get a sick baby to sleep is one question many parents have asked. A few things are as challenging as trying to get a sick baby to sleep. When your child is under the weather, the last thing they want to do is close their eyes and drift off into dreamland. But with patience and some handy tips, you can help them get the rest they need. Read through the entire list of tips to get started.
Why Does a Sick Baby Find It Hard to Sleep?
A sick baby may find it difficult to sleep for several reasons. Some of the primary reasons include the following;
They’re Feeling Uncomfortable
When a baby is unwell, they often experience additional symptoms such as fever, lack of appetite, or body aches that can make them feel uncomfortable and lets the baby rest. This could be because their normal noise and motion cues are disrupted due to the illness. This means that their need for rest is hindered. Being uncomfortable can also cause the baby to become more anxious or irritable. As a result, they may not be able to relax enough to let themselves go into a deep sleep and, therefore, more easily settle for short periods.
Anxiety & Stress
When a baby is unwell, sleep can be challenging. For example, anxiety and stress can prevent restful sleep. Babies are sensitive to their environment, from the people in their lives to the objects and activities around them. A sick baby may experience more insecurity and feel more vulnerable than usual. This can manifest as restlessness, irritability, and difficulty settling. Adults also find it difficult to rest when feeling anxious or stressed; it’s no different for little ones too!
Read more: Should I Let My Sick Baby Sleep All Day?
How To Get A Sick Baby To Sleep?
Here are some top tips to help your sick baby sleep during times of illness:
Comfort Is Key
Ensure your little one has all the comforts to help them drift off to slumber land. If their bedding is too hot, adjust the room’s temperature or provide extra blankets and covers for warmth. If they’re too cold, dress them slightly warmer than you usually would during the day. Check that any noise from other parts of the house isn’t disturbing their sleep, so switch on white noise if needed or try listening out for sudden noises around the house that could be waking them up. Sleep training is also important to maintain ideal comfort at night.
Distraction Works Wonders
If your baby is uncomfortable, try distracting them with different activities such as reading stories or playing gentle music, which will temporarily take their mind off the pain and help them relax enough to drift off into dreamland. Additionally, you could try giving them a warm bath or massage to stimulate their senses and help calm them down.
Try Natural Sleep Remedies
Herbal teas such as chamomile tea can help help your baby relax and get into a sleepy state. You could also look into natural sleep remedies designed for infants that may provide additional comfort. Remember to always consult with your physician before giving any supplement or therapy to your baby.
Stick To A Schedule
A regular child sleep schedule works wonders for adults, and those same principles should be applied to sick babies too. Try setting up healthy sleep habits in the house and make sure your little one gets into bed at the same time each night and wakes up at the same time every morning. A consistent sleep routine will help condition their body to naturally fall asleep when they’re supposed to, even during sickness or disruption from those sleepless nights.
Try Warm Baths
Warm baths are great for helping your little one relax and eventually fall asleep. Make the water temperature slightly more generous than usual, as this will help soothe their aching muscles. You can also add essential oils such as lavender or chamomile to the bath, which further aids relaxation. Make sure the room is dimly lit, and keep talking to a minimum so they can drift off into sleep easily.
Use a Humidifier
If your baby has trouble breathing due to congestion, use a humidifier to help clear the airways. The moisture will also provide comfort and make it easier for them to rest. However, clean the device regularly as bacteria can accumulate in the water tank and lead to more problems.
Keep Your Baby Hydrated
Staying hydrated is essential for everyone, even for babies, who can’t tell you when they’re thirsty. Keeping your sick baby hydrated will help them get enough rest and help to relieve any symptoms or discomfort. You may need to offer fluids more frequently than usual and ensure the fluid is cool or lukewarm; warmer and colder temperatures can crunch up your baby’s throat and lead to coughing. An infant oral rehydration solution like Pedialyte can be constructive during illness if needed.
These tips should guide you on how to help your baby get the restful sleep they need while sick or during times of disruption. Remember that a good night’s sleep is essential in assisting them to recover from any illness, so it’s vital that you take the necessary steps to ensure their comfort and safety during this trying time. t than usual to help fight off the illness.
Read more: Should I Let My Sick Baby Sleep With Me?
What if My Baby Can’t Sleep At All?
If your baby isn’t sleeping despite your best efforts, it may be time to consult with a physician or sleep specialist. They can provide further advice and recommend treatments to help your little one get the restful baby’s sleep they need. Some medications may be prescribed to help them fall asleep more easily. You must take any of these decisions seriously and discuss them thoroughly with a certified pediatric sleep consultant before deciding on medication for your child.
Read more: Why Do Babies Sleep With Their Mouths Open?
Above all else, remember that patience is crucial and every baby is different; what works for one person may not work for another. Try out different approaches until you find something that works best for you and your little one. Rest assured, eventually, they will get the rest they need, and their sleep will become more consistent. In the meantime, get plenty of rest to be a better caregiver for your little one during these trying times.