SLEEPING

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Newborn babies always seem to sleep, except when you want them to. They usually sleep up to 20 hours a day and only wake every 2 to 3 hours for feeding. Most babies start sleeping through the night at between 3 weeks and 3 months of age. Feeding them cereal will not make them sleep longer or earlier ( unless you believe it will, yes that's right ). Only rice cereal is safe below 6 months of age, not oatmeal, rye or barley until 6 months.

Your baby will develop his or her own sleeping schedule in time, but you can help him or her match your schedule with a few simple steps.

When sleeping with your baby, you will not be able to feel your baby stop breathing (as some parents think) and there are too many babies that die each year from their parents rolling over on them, therefore many doctors recommend not to sleep with your infants. Since most of the worlds parents sleep with their kids and they do fine, then who is right? So long as you remember the precautions listed here, there is no problem with sleeping with your kids. NEVER let your baby sleep or lay on a waterbed, as they can get trapped between the bed and side board and be crushed or suffocate. At this time, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that your baby sleep on his or her back as this position as been shown to greatly reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome. The side is actually unstable and if your baby rolls over onto its belly, then the risk of SIDS goes up. Your baby should not have a very soft or fluffy pillow, comforter, mattress or bedding as your baby will not be able to turn his or her head yet if needed and could suffocate.

BOOKS:

I have condensed much of what I learned about solving sleep problems into the page in my newborn booklet and web site. Obviously you canít solve every sleep problem with one page worth of advice. If the other tips we have discussed donít work, its time to really do some research and find out about your specific situation. The following book is a compilation of many different types of sleep problems and how to solve them. Itís produced by the American Academy of Pediatrics, therefore its comprehensive and trustworthy advice. I do caution that you read as much as possible and formulate a plan of action you can work with. Donít read for quick answers and halfway try them.

  • TITLE: Guide to Your Childís Sleep Problems

  • EDITOR: George Cohen, MD, FAAP

  • PUBLISHER: Random House

  • ISBM #: 0-679-76981-1

  • PAGES: 224 

  • COST: $12.95 list in paperback, $10.36 on Amazon.com (as of 2005)

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