Newborn won’t sleep unless held! Believe it or not, many new parents experience this problem.
Does any of these scenarios sound familiar:
- Your baby is sleeping soundly in your arms until you lay them on the crib, and all hell breaks loose?
- The baby wakes up during the night for a diaper change and will not go back to sleep unless held, with the better part of the night requiring a lot of soothing.
Your baby might be a few weeks old, but they are not dumb. The minute they are not in our arms, they can tell something is different. Remember, the baby has spent nine or so months in a warm and cozy home, the uterus.
The closeness between you and your child when you hold them close provides some level of warmth the crib or bassinet does not offer. But there are times when you also need to catch a break.
Learn more in a related article: How To Get Newborn To Sleep Without Being Held? 4 Quick Tips
What to do When Newborn Won’t Sleep Unless Held
If your baby does not sleep unless you hold them, try one of these tips:
1. Swaddle the Baby
Swaddling is a long-held practice where one gently wraps the baby in a light, warm and breathable blanket. It helps in calming them down and also inducing sleep. When swaddling your baby, ensure you only cover their body, from the neck down.
A newborn is still getting used to life outside the womb, and swaddling allows them to feel snuggled and more secure. This womb-like feeling usually helps to get them to calm down and sleep without being held.
2. Get a Pacifier
Pacifier, which acts as a fake nipple, comes with much power when dealing with a crying baby. The pacifier’s suckling helps in calming the baby between feedings by satisfying their need to suckle without feeding them.
Apart from this, the pacifier might save your baby’s life. Research shows that suckling a pacifier opens up the airways around the nose and mouth, ensuring the baby gets enough oxygen.
3. Move Around
Your baby is probably not yet used to a still world than the womb where there were constant movements. It might help to move around while holding the baby in a soothing rhythm. Alternatively, get a vibrating bassinet, like the Fisher-Price bassinet or the Angelbliss bassinet. Some of these bassinets also double as cradles that you can rock the baby with back and forth for that soothing motion.
4. Hold the Baby in Turns
When none of these methods work, you or your partner is around; you can take turns holding the baby. With this, one of you can take a break, get some sleep, or do some chores while the other cuddle the baby.
However, be careful not to fall asleep while holding the baby. It sounds simple, but it can be challenging, especially in the middle of the night when one is exhausted. Still, there are lots of accidents of babies falling off when one falls asleep when holding them.
Sleep Training for Your Newborn
It is good to start sleep training your infant to ensure they have a healthy sleep pattern as they grow. It will save you a lot of headaches when they get to toddler age and become more active. Mostly, experts recommend starting sleep training when the baby is between 4 and 6 months old.
You can get a sleep trainer or do sleep training on your own. Start by setting a bedtime routine and be consistent.
With the above strategies, you can find a way to deal with newborn won’t sleep unless held issues. It might take time for any specific method to work, and it might not be a permanent solution. Alternatively, sleep training your newborn might also help.