Bedtime routines are not only an essential part of healthy sleep for baby, but for parents, too. By establishing a routine, baby learns to fall asleep on their own—and comfort themselves back to sleep without the need for you to soothe them by rocking or lying next to them. When we create a bedtime routine, we are cueing that it is time for sleep, and baby experiences better overall sleep with fewer wakeups through the night. This ultimately means that when baby sleeps better, so do you!
But just because it’s routine doesn’t mean it has to be boring. Here are some ways to personalize and add a little sparkle to your baby’s evening wind down.
Baby’s final feeding
Starting the bedtime routine with a final feeding ensures baby won’t wake up hungry in a few hours. Begin the routine with fun and personalized mealtime accessories, like the Disney Essentials bibs by aden + anais®. The goal is to not encourage an emotional attachment to feeding as a sleep aid, but to start to signal winding down and drowsiness.
Read a favorite fairy tale as bedtime story
Books are a favorite way to wind down with baby, but it doesn’t mean you’re stuck reading the same bedtime stories over and over again. Share your favorites from growing up, such as one of Disney’s fairy tales, to make bedtime stories just as fun for you too.
Sing a sweet lullaby or song
Don’t limit yourself to Twinkle Twinkle Little Star or The Wheels on the Bus. Have some fun turning your guilty pleasure songs into lullabies so you can share your love of music with baby. Use YouTube on your phone to do a quiet karaoke, or test your memory to sing songs acapella in their entirety.
Ensure baby is sleeping in a safe setting
Safe sleep doesn’t have to mean no-fun sleep. Even though there should be nothing in the crib, including loose blankets, a Disney Baby collection by HALO® SleepSack® or Swaddle makes for safe sleep with an added personal touch.
A light projector can add another soothing element for baby, and some even include a white noise maker. Projections like stars and moons turn baby’s room into a nighttime oasis and can help them fall back asleep if they wake up.
The bedtime routine not only establishes healthy sleep patterns but also offers a special bonding experience for you and your baby. And just as your baby is like no other, your personalized touch is unique and strengthens your bond—while adding a little bit of magic as well.