Adjust the Day with Your Infant as You Go
Prevent Over-Tiredness by Working With Your Baby
Dearest full feedings family,
Babies, are not robots. There will be a day when your perfect baby wakes earlier than you want or takes a short nap.
For this Type A mama, this was hard for me.
So, what do you do? How do you manage the day when your baby slept for 30 minutes instead of an hour and a half?
You adjust the day as you go. It's really pretty simple but when you're in the thick of sleep deprivation, and everything else that comes along with having an infant, it can be hard to think clearly.
To adjust the day, get your baby up from their nap when it's clear they won't sleep anymore (either they're wide awake or you've tried rocking and it hasn't worked).
Then, start the clock on their OWT (Optimal Wake Time). Offer a full feed, play and back to sleep before the end of their OWT. You may need an extra catnap at the end of the day to get to bedtime without your baby becoming overtired. This is totally fine!
Short naps and early wakings are the exact reason we focus on flexible routines and not strict schedules.
There are some common causes of short naps and early wakings that you may want to consider to help your baby take longer naps on their own:
- Decreased daytime sleep needs/increased awake time needs! Is your baby within two weeks of a new guide? It may be time to increase their OWT!
- Over-tiredness! Is your baby asleep by their OWT or are they staying awake longer?
- Hunger! If your baby is still a newborn, their food needs may be changing. If they just started solids, they may be taking in less milk accidentally.
We always want to adjust the day as we go so that babies aren't awake too long in any period, so we can avoid them becoming overtired.
You got this, fam!