Coming home is a big change for your baby. Everything is new and different: noises, temperature, smells, colours. They may need lots of cuddles for reassurance. It can take some time for babies to settle into a new environment.
Remember that premature babies have more active sleep than term babies, so although they may be moving around at night, they may well be sleeping better than you think.
If your baby is unsettled, you can try stroking them to reassure them you are there. This will be easier if you have a Moses basket next to your bed. You may also want to try leaving a night light on.
Baby massage is a great way of bringing you closer to your baby, and is also very good for your baby’s health and sense of wellbeing. Massage has been shown to be especially useful for premature and sick babies. It can help you bond by making your baby feel loved and helping you learn about your baby’s needs. You will also both find it very relaxing.
Allow your baby time to try and settle on his or her own. Many babies cry briefly before going to sleep, and it is better not to pick them up or disturb them if they are trying to settle down. Watch out for what your baby likes to do before falling asleep and you will soon be able to read his or her cues.
For more information on safe sleeping, including a video, see the information provided by the Lullaby Trust
If you need advice or reassurance on safe sleeping, you might also find it helpful to talk to another parent or visit a local support group. Alternatively contact the Bliss Family Services Helpline for more information.
Click on the links below to find out more about safe sleeping.
What is the best sleeping position?
Can my baby sleep with me?