How to cope with a disrupted baby sleep routine

Has your baby’s routine disrupted? Here’s what to do to get it back on track

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Perhaps getting late home from work or heading off on holiday has upset your baby’s sleep routine. But there are things you can do to lessen the impact to your baby’s bedtime.

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“Routines are a sequence of events consisting of major cues (bath time, putting on pyjamas) and minor cues (dimming the lights, talking in low voices). It’s not essential for your baby that they always happen in the same environment or at the same time, but it is vital that they happen in the same sequence,” explains Chireal Shallow, an educational psychologist and founder of the London-based Naturally Nurturing children’s sleep clinic.

“If your routine is really thrown, you can reduce it so it’s just a snapshot, with just one major and a couple of minor cues, but still creating enough routine to prompt your baby to settle.

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“If you go on holiday, take things with you that your baby associates with being in a safe environment – a favourite toy to look at and hold, his own bedsheets to feel and smell. Then, as long as you include some major and minor cues, he should still settle,” says Chireal.

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