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How to Plan Your Baby’s Bedtime Routine


Kate holding up her baby Emily

By Kate Bryan, The Small Things Blog. Kate Bryan is a paid spokesperson for HEALTHY ESSENTIALS®

One of the things Justin and I focused on right after we had our first child, David, was setting up a good baby bedtime routine. Justin and I both thrive on predictable routines, so planning how to get our baby into a routine to relax and fall asleep during a time when we, the parents, were our most tired too, was helpful.

We liked that there wasn’t any confusion of when bedtime would start or if bath time was happening; we simply followed the same routine so everyone, including the baby, knew how the evening would go!

With the addition of each little one to the family, we’ve maintained a fairly similar baby bedtime routine. In general it follows this order: dinner, playtime, bath time, jammies, last feeding, and then bed. At this point our preschool-aged boys spend a lot more time playing after dinner since their bath time is shorter and they don’t need a final feeding like the baby does!

Emily has loved baths ever since she was a few weeks old, which makes this part of the baby nighttime routine really enjoyable.

Kate bathing her baby Emily with JOHNSON'S bedtime bath

There really isn’t a sweeter fragrance that reminds me of little babies than that of JOHNSON’S® Bedtime bath wash and Bedtime baby lotion. When I think of a baby smell, I think of the scent in those two products! The aroma is soothing for both Emily and I, and the warm water of the bath helps relax her from a day of grabbing at toys and practicing sitting up! JOHNSON’S® recently redesigned all of their washes, lotions and haircare products and reduced the number of ingredients in their portfolio by more than 50 percent, including removing sulfates and dyes. And, as part of the redesign, there are now more ergonomic bottles with pumps for convenient, one-hand use to make bath time easier and allow your attention to remain focused on your baby.

After the bath, Emily gets lotion rubbed all over her to keep her skin smooth and soft. The boys love to help with this part of bedtime, which is really sweet!

Kate massaging baby Emily with JOHNSON'S bedtime baby lotion

After she’s all clean and in her sleeper, she gets her last feeding of the day in a dim room with the sound machine playing soft white noise in the room. It helps calm her down and also helps drown out her older brothers from the playroom beside her bedroom!

Kate holding her smiling baby

The nighttime routine of bath, then a light “baby massage” with lotion, and finally bedtime, sets Emily up for an easy transition to sleep at the end of the a long day. Emily has always slept well at night, but sometimes falling asleep took a while. I think she’s really starting to see the repetition of these steps in the evening and it’s helping her to know what is coming next.

Kate Bryan is a paid spokesperson for HEALTHY ESSENTIALS®

Are They Getting Enough Zzz’s?

“We have to recognize that anything that’s stressing the child’s body is making them more susceptible to illness,” says pediatrician Dr. Emanuel Cirenza, “I always emphasize that the child is hydrated, well nourished, and really getting an adequate amount of sleep.”

Optimal sleep time is:
Newborns: 16-18 hours
1-4 years old: 11-12 hours
5-12: At least 10 hours
13+: 9-10 hours
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