Wake-up times can be crucial for a day to go well especially among infants and toddlers. If it’s random, it can have a bearing on their happiness quotient. Your baby can be cranky and bring the whole house down, not really understanding why they feel the way they do. You may feel lost and confused too. The solution could lie in their sleep times. Let’s examine why they wake up early in the morning.
If your baby woke up earlier than 6 AM, it may mean that your entire day will go crazy. You, as a parent, are sleep-deprived, which means you’re running on short-fuse. The rest just follows, shall we say?
You may pat yourself on the back upon noticing that your baby has achieved the impossible – sleeping all night. This is a blessing for many parents who’ve spent horrendous nights trying to pacify their babies through the nights. No matter what, the wailing does not stop and neither your baby nor you have a clue what’s wrong. At least, this is not the scene anymore. Your baby sleeps peacefully into the night. But wait, is the problem entirely solved? Most parents are confronted with the problem of their babies rising before the sun does. So how does one resolve the matter?
Identify the Root
Why do they wake up early in the morning? Subtle changes and not so subtle ones could be the underlying problem. Identifying the root of it can help ease matters. Here are a few reasons –
- Environment change – crib, room, home, transition from crib to bed
- Birth of a sibling, emotional disturbance
- Parents squabbling in front of or heard by the toddler
- Potty training
- Learning to walk and other major developments
Regulate Sleep Timings
Sleep can be too much or too less in the afternoon. You might expect a baby who’s slept too less to compensate for the sleep-time lost, at night. Contrary to expectation, an overtired child wakes up earlier than necessary and the cycle of exhaustion and irritation may continue if gone unchecked.
A child that oversleeps is also a matter of concern as they wake up early in the morning. By sleeping too much in the day, sleep is evasive at night, again resulting in a wake-up time that’s too early. If your baby is required to sleep 2 hours in the afternoon but sleeps for 4 hours, expect their sleep to reduce by those extra 2 hours. The recommended bedtime for a toddler is at or after 7 pm but not beyond 8 pm. As far as possible, regulate sleep timings during the day and night. This will help your child fall into a pattern and fall asleep easily as the scheduled time approaches.
Curtains and Blinds
Yes, your little one’s room must be bright and sunny. But also have the option to draw curtains that keep sunlight away. Too much sun streaming into your baby’s crib may well be the problem. Invest in some blackout shades if the sun rays of a scorching summer appear to be waking up your baby. Likewise, ensure that the room temperature, your baby’s sheet and other items in the crib are comfortable for proper sleep. Keep the crib clutter-free except maybe a couple of soft toys to cuddle with or roll over and a favourite baby rug.
What to Do?
Despite all these measures, what would you do if they still wake up early in the morning? Well, try to sing a lullaby tune, gently massage the hair, kiss and pet your child to sleep. There should be no extra sound, excitement or disturbance to distract your child from sleeping. Try not to bring toys to pacify your child. A reassuring touch and a gentle massage, care and comfort is all they may need to drop back to sleep. Then when it’s time to wake up, dramatically open the curtains and make a song and dance about the morning, smile big, so they begin the day in high spirits.
We hope this helps your baby sleep tight!