“Eat, Play, Sleep, Repeat” for healthy infant sleep
If you’ve been reading up on infant sleep or nutrition, it’s likely that you’ve seen the “Eat, Play, Sleep” schedule. It can take a variety of forms. Tracey Hogg, the Baby Whisperer, formed her “EASY” method around it. EASY = Eat, Activity, Sleep, and then time for YOU. Yes, your needs are important too Mum!
However it’s phrased, this schedule, where you feed your child on waking instead of just before sleep, really is the best method to encourage full feeds and decent sleeps from a young age.
From experience I know it can take dedication and determination to achieve this schedule in your day to day life. Sometimes it can take practice. But it really does have great benefits for improving sleep and feeding in infants.
Five things you should know
Here, I’ve listed 5 tips and facts for you to consider. These may help you improve your Eat, Play then Sleep situation.
- Feeding babies upon waking helps ensure fuller feeds as they are better rested and are less likely to fall asleep on the job.
- Doing it this way means they are less likely to spill that precious liquid gold. This is simply because their little tummies have more time to digest the food before they lay down flat to sleep.
- If your little one had a nice big feed after his or her nap, they probably won’t be hungry again before the next nap rolls around. Therefore there is no need to feed them before laying them down (which can increase spitting up and aggravate reflux).
- During “play/activity time” include a variety of positions: on his or her back, upright, and tummy time. This will help those burps and air bubbles come out, which is much more comfortable than if they go straight back down without enough winding. Less winding can mean painful intestinal gas.
- It’s common for baby’s cues to be hard to read. Tired signs can look like hunger signs (and wind signs), so if you’re seeing what you think may be hunger right before a nap, it’s a good idea to put your baby down to sleep as soon as possible. Chances are they are not hungry, just tired.
If you have a newborn
Please note that this schedule may not work perfectly for a newborn. When you’re still getting to know your little one everything is new for both of you. And if you’re just starting out, there may be little time for activity before baby needs another nap – work up to it. Remember it takes practice, and hang in there. It’s well worth it in the end. x
If you’re having a hard time with sleep in your household, schedule a free 15-minute call and I’ll help you make it work. And don’t forget to follow me on Facebook and Instagram, or sign up to my newsletter. Because everyone needs a good night’s sleep! xx