Most parents love spending quality time with their babies and want to cherish every precious moment.
There are also times when even the most committed of parents start to feel exhausted. When babies have difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep through the night, it can take a toll on the entire family.
Parents and siblings can start to suffer negative effects from sleep deprivation. Lack of sleep can also impact the baby’s physical, emotional, and mental development. It’s important for parents to address sleep issues as soon as possible.
A small blanket or soft toy with a blanket, also known as a baby comforter, can settle your baby and help to teach positive sleeping habits.
When Do Babies Start to Sleep Through the Night?
There are many variables that impact your baby’s ability to sleep through the night. Age and weight are primary factors. Other considerations include the baby’s general temperament, environment, and the family’s nightly routine.
Under most circumstances, you can expect your baby to start sleeping for longer stretches of time when they reach four months of age. It’s common for your baby to not sleep for a full eight-hour night until they are at least six months old (or beyond).
What is Sleep Association?
Sleep association is a routine that lets the baby know it is the appropriate time to go to sleep. Parents will often induce sleep by cuddling, feeding, rocking, or laying with their baby. Although this is effective, it requires parents to be present each time the baby needs to sleep.
When the baby shifts into the light stage of the sleeping cycle, they will begin to cry if the parent is no longer next to them. Many families find that this isn’t feasible for the long-term.
A dummy is often used as a substitute, but this causes similar issues. When the baby realises the dummy is no longer in their mouth, they will wake up and begin to cry. Sleep experts recommend that parents ditch the dummy and explore other methods of self-soothing.
Advantages of Using a Baby Comforter
Using a comforter can help your child to easily transition to independent sleep. When it is kept within reach during the night, they can easily reach for it and soothe themself back to sleep.
Comforters can also serve as a friendly companion to accompany your child on adventures in the pram, on car trips, and at daycare.
Studies have shown that children who carry a comforter or security blanket are better able to deal with stressful situations. They also tend to be more well-adjusted as they grow older. Younger babies show a preference for objects resembling small blankets.
What is the Best Age to Introduce a Baby Comforter?
Red Nose (formerly SIDS) supports the use of a sleep-safe comforter from the age of 7 months. Developmental changes around this age lead to separation anxiety, and a comforter is the perfect tool to ensure your baby feels safe, secure and reminded of you. If you would like your baby to become attached to a particular comforter from babyhood through the their toddler years, between 7-10 months is the best time to introduce your comforter.
Comforters make great newborn gifts, and quality comforters are safe for your baby to hug, play and chew from birth when awake.
Children can benefit from having a baby comforter for many years, so it is never too late to introduce one into your nightly routine.
How to Choose a Baby Comforter
Particularly for young babies, it’s important that the blanket or baby comforter is made of light, breathable fabric. Organic cotton or muslin are great choices as these are safer for baby and will naturally absorb your scent.
Check to ensure that there is no loose stitching or small pieces that can come off and cause a choking hazard. The best baby comforter will be soft, cuddly, and small enough to comfortably fit in their tiny hands. Beware of plush fibres which can be ingested or inhaled by your baby and are often synthetic.
Your child will probably become very attached to their baby comforter, so you will want one that is well-made and durable. It will inevitably get soiled, so it must also be machine washable. It’s essential to purchase multiple comforters so you have a back-up when needed and can avoid a potential meltdown if one is lost.
Advantages of a Kippin Baby Blankie
Kippin baby blankies are high-quality comforters that feature Kippin characters your baby is sure to love. They feature bold prints that stimulate a baby’s eyesight and self-tie knots to help soothe teething pain and discomfort.
These blankies are made with 100% organic cotton and water-based ink. They are hypoallergenic and safe for your baby’s sensitive skin.
Introducing Your Baby to Their New Comforter
Some children easily bond with a special blanket or baby comforter, while others need some encouragement. The first step is to integrate the comforter into your feeding routine. Lay it across your chest and let your baby hold and cuddle it while they are relaxed in your arms.
If you sleep with the comforter, it will absorb your scent. This will naturally soothe your baby and help them to fall asleep quickly. Tuck it in with your baby at night and make sure it stays within reach while they are sleeping. Repeated introduction is the key to a lasting friendship.
You will know when your baby has started to become attached to their comforter. They will smile when they see it, reach for it when they’re upset, and may frequently rub it on their face.
Maintaining Sleep Association
Keep the baby’s comforter in the bed or crib so it retains the association with sleeping. Always keep one of your child’s favourite comforters in the cot for sleep time (buying multiple of the same comforter is key). Use it during part of every sleep or settling routine.
Some children quickly become attached to a specific comforter while others are a bit more indifferent. If you find that your baby isn’t bonding to a particular one, give a few choices and let them pick the one they want before bed each night. You will soon find that a preference develops.
Your baby deserves the highest quality toys to keep them comfortable and support development. Visit our online shop and don’t forget to check out our blog so you don’t miss out on any exciting news.