If you’re a parent, you probably know that babies are hard to decipher. It seems like they have their own language (and I am not referring to English or Chinese). Babies communicate with us through their silent cues such as rubbing eyes and yawning and of course sometimes they burst into loud inconsolable tears. Here are some of the most common signs that your baby is ready for bed:
Rubbing his eyes
It’s a reflex, but it’s also a sign of tiredness. When your baby rubs his eyes, it means he’s getting tired and needs to sleep soon. This behavior is common in newborns and infants and of course also toddlers. Think about how you feel after being up all night working on a project at work: You want to go home and get some sleep without any distractions. Your baby feels the same way! If he wants to rest and relax now, give him what he needs: quietness, darkness, and warmth so that he can slip into dreamland quickly (and hopefully peacefully).
A cranky baby is a tired baby. If your child is getting irritable and fussy, it’s time to put him down for a nap or for his bedtime.
You may have heard that yawning is a sign of tiredness, which is absolutely true. It’s a reflex that happens when the body needs more oxygen or is stressed out by something. However, yawning also shows boredom and stress, as well as pain. If your baby has an ear infection or teething, yawning may also be one of the symptoms.
If your baby is being clingy, you can be sure that they are tired. Babies who are tired will want to be close to you and other caregivers. They also may want to be close to things they like or things that make them feel safe and comfortable, such as their favourite toy or blanket.
Pulling at his ears
Your baby may pull at his ears when he is tired. If you notice this behavior, you may want to start doing your nap time routine or bedtime because this is also another indication that your child may be tired.
Acting fussy for no clear reason
This is definitely one clear sign that your child needs to get some shut-eye. If your baby is getting all fussy and cranky, it’s time to put him down for a nap. Overtiredness will cause your child to be frustrated and since they can’t communicate yet, they cry and whine to let you know they are getting tired. The best way to get rid of the tired feelings is to sleep it off.
Here are some more ways babies show their tiredness:
- Being fussy or cranky
- Refuse to eat or drink, but still want a bottle
- Falling asleep while feeding
- Not showing much interest in activities or playing with toys
It’s important to learn as much as you can about your baby’s sleepy cues. This will allow you to put your baby down to bed before they get overly tired. If you want to learn more about baby sleep training and learn how to foster healthy sleep habits for your child, book a FREE 20-mins discovery call with us today or you can DIY by reading our book Sleep Baby Sleep or watch our Sleep Baby Sleep Online Video program.