How Long After Feeding Can I Put My Baby Down?
If you have a newborn baby, it’s easy to fall into a habit of waking them up for feeds. However, if your goal is to settle them to sleep on their own, it’s best not to keep feeding them at night.
Rather, put them to bed in a comfortable position and allow them to go down asleep. Then, you’ll have a much better chance of getting them back to sleep without any help from you at all.
You’ll need to change your baby’s diaper before putting them down, as they can be more uncomfortable when they haven’t had time to digest their food or poo. It’s also important to change them quickly, because babies can become drowsy if they’re too warm or wet in their diapers.
Your doctor or child and family health nurse can give you some more tips about when it’s safe to let your baby down. If your baby has GERD, for example, or spits up a lot, it’s probably wise to keep them upright for at least 15 minutes after each feeding. This will minimize gas bubbles in their tummy and will also prevent your baby from choking on their spit.
For some infants, this routine can be a challenge, but it’s essential for good sleep. It’s also a good idea to track your baby’s sleep pattern from birth so you know when they’re ready for a nap or bedtime. This will help you plan ahead and avoid frequent wakefulness in the middle of the night, which can be difficult to deal with.
It’s also a good idea to keep your baby upright for a few hours after their night feed, too. This is especially true for babies who spit up a lot, and can be particularly helpful if your baby has a cough or cold.
Babies have a natural reflex to keep their airways clear so that they don’t choke on spit. This is why it’s so important to hold them upright after they feed, and to make sure that you burp them right away, too.
You can also take your time settling your baby, and try to put them down when they’re in a deep sleep. This can be done using the floppy-arm test (lifting an arm and dropping it, which will tell you if they’re in a deep sleep).
Another helpful technique is to try to separate eating from sleeping. Putting your baby to bed with a bottle or breast in their hands isn’t a great way to help them fall asleep, because they’ll expect this every time. Instead, you can move the feeding to the beginning of your nap or bedtime routine, so they’re more likely to fall asleep on their own before you get into their room.
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One of the most common questions I get is: How long after feeding can i put my baby down?