When I found out two months ago that we were having another baby, I was beyond excited. Over the last several weeks, however, the memories of almost five long months of sleepless nights have made me cringe in fear. Our son woke up every two hours on the nose, twenty four hours a day without fail for months. My husband and I were zombies. I was suffering from nausea and dizzy spells due to the sleep deprivation. It was rough.
Along the way we learned some tricks. First off, he was a tiny escape artist and would bust out of his swaddle blanket within minutes. I was never really good at swaddling anyway so I gave up on it altogether until someone suggested I get a pre-sewn swaddle blanket with a velcro closure. I ran out and bought several SwaddleMe blankets and holy cow, was that a good idea. Our son jumped from waking every two hours to every four and after three months of him waking so often, this was the relief we all needed.
Second, we never had a cradle/co-sleeper or anything like that. We plopped our tiny newborn in his full size crib every night and I'm sure this contributed to his constant waking. I've read so many articles, studies, etc... since then that newborns "generally" like to sleep in smaller spaces. It makes sense. After all they've spent the last nine months all cozied up in their mothers womb, right? How could they possibly feel all safe and secure in the open space of a huge crib. This is a mistake we wont be repeating.
I've spent some time on the old interweb lately trying to figure out what type of newborn sleep solution is right for us and although I'm not committed to anything as of yet, I'm leaning strongly toward a hanging and/or baby responsive cradle. Here are a few I've got my eye on.....
The womb like design of this baby hammock by Amby promotes increased airflow and visibility. It helps sooth common conditions such as colic, gas, cramping and reflux. It also responds to your baby's kicking with a gentle rocking and swaying motion. If you were wondering what I meant by "baby responsive cradle", this is it.
This cradle may take a more traditional design than the others here, but it still fits what we're looking for. It's gentle springy movement makes it easy for babies to rock themselves to sleep. The mesh sides promote airflow and make it easy to see your baby without having to lift your head. It's compact and easy to move around or even travel with and it's just the right height to place beside your bed.
This hanging cradle can be suspended from your ceiling or from their tripod stand (sold separately) and swings gently in all directions helping to not only sooth your baby, but also promote a sense of orientation. You can read more about it's concept here.
The "Beautiful Dreamer" Hammock by Arm's Reach Promotes Airflow and baby led movement and even features an adjustable back to help sooth colic and aid in digestion. It's cozy design and movement is meant to continue the feeling of being in the womb.
Have you ever used or considered using a baby hammock or hanging cradle? Do you own one of these? If so, I would love to hear about it. Please let me know what think or if you have any suggestions in the comments section.