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With many Australian cities cooling down now we see the Ugg boots go on and heaters being cranked up. In the colder weather it’s important to make sure your child is comfortable at sleep time and not waking from being too hot or cold. So many babies I see are waking overnight from being too cold. The coldest part of the night is during the hours of 3-6am and this is a very common time for unsettled waking. Here are some of my biggest winter sleep tips:
Maintain a comfortable room temperature - The Dr Golly Sleep program recommends a room temperature of 19-22 degrees (celsius) if possible. Keeping a consistent temperature will give you peace of mind that your baby or child is dressed appropriately and won’t need layers removed or added through the night. To maintain this temperature in the bedroom during cold nights, consider a small panel heater that is safe to touch and has a thermostat built in.
Dressing your baby appropriately - Although the ideal temperature is 19-22 degrees (celsius) it’s unrealistic to think that every house can stay within these temperatures. What’s more important is making sure your baby or child is dressed to stay warm enough overnight and during naps. Layers are key! While your baby is small and not mobile, using a blanket tucked in firm and safe is fine, however as they get more mobile, blankets can be kicked off, and children aren’t instinctively able to pull up the covers if they get cold until at least 5 years of age. Imagine if we weren’t able to pull up the duvet if we woke up feeling cold - it makes it very hard to go back to sleep! Because of this, I always recommend using sleeping bags or sleep suits that are appropriately TOG-rated and sized for your baby or child. Even if your child is in a big bed, wrigglers and kickers should be kept in a sleep suit (a sleeping bag with legs) until they are closer to 4-5 years of age. As adults, most of our all-season duvets have a TOG rating of 7.5-10.5, so it’s important to also warm your baby or child’s room, if they are in a 2.5-3.5 TOG winter sleeping bag.
Including a warm bath or shower before bed, as part of your baby’s evening routine, can be relaxing and calming. Make sure the room you dress them in after the bath is warmed up, to help minimise the discomfort of rapid temperature changes.
Getting out and about is so important during winter and you shouldn’t feel that you need to stay home for every nap. When outside in winter, popping a beanie on your baby’s head and generally dressing them in 1 extra layer (than what we wear) will help keep them warm. The Dr Golly Program gives you flexibility to your day while being able to stick to an age-appropriate routine so you’re still able to get out and about.
Join the Dr Golly Sleep Programtoday.