How to get my baby to sleep better! Advice from an Infant Sleep Consultant

As an Infant Sleep Consultant people always ask me “How can I get my baby to sleep better?”. Unfortunately, there is not just one quick answer but here are my best tips to get your little one sleeping better. 

Sleep Environment: Having your littles ones sleep environment perfect is very important and there are three key elements:

Darkness: Having a dark sleep environment allows your baby to produce their own melatonin by enabling serotonin to be converted into melatonin, the sleepy hormone. A dark sleep space also limits distractions, enabling easier settling. Too much light blocks the production of melatonin and signals to your baby’s brain that it is time to be awake, making settling and resettling challenging. The room should ideally be an 8-9/10 on the scale of darkness - it should be so dark that you would struggle to read a book. 

Temperature: If your baby is too cold or too warm, it can disrupt their ability to fall asleep and stay asleep. The ideal temperature for your baby’sbedroom is 20-22 degrees. It is important to layer them appropriately for the temperature of the room. Most sleeping bags come with a layering guide based on their weight. It is important to follow these guides correctly to ensure your baby isn’t too hot or cold. Generally adding a swaddle over the top of a sleeping bag is the equivalent of 1 clothing layer. 

White Noise: White noise is a fantastic tool for settling, and acts as a positive sleep association in your baby’s sleep environment. It is important to play white noise as loud as a running shower and continuously for the duration of naps and night time sleep in order for it to be most effective. White noise is a valuable soothing tool that provides a consistent sleep environment, and also blocks out external noises that may disrupt your baby's sleep 

Naps (and how many): Naps are so important to a young child’s health and development. If you are not sure when to offer your naps, I recommend using age appropriate awake windows between naps and from four months old don’t offer naps before 9am. Below are my recommendations of how many naps to give depending on the age of your child:

Newborn: 3-5

2-4 months: 3-4


8-15 months: 2

18mths - 3yrs:


Early Bedtime: An early bedtime is your friend, from 0-5years your little one should be tucked in bed by 7pm. On days where naps were short or missed, an early bedtime will help your little one from getting overtired.

An early bedtime of 6pm or 6.30pm will not cause early rising. We are just offering the child an extra sleep cycle at the beginning of the night where a baby or child has their most restorative sleep. We aren’t taking away their morning sleep. 

Early morning wake ups: Here’s some tips to see that 5am wake up pushed back or even stopped!

  • Ensure day naps are at the age appropriate times. 
  • Make sure your morning nap is not before 9am from 4 months.  
  • Make sure bedtime is not too late. 
  • Make sure they are warm, the temperature drops to the lowest early morning. 
  • Play white noise music nice and loud to stop any outside noises waking them.
  • Limit or stop the following: food, light and social interaction. Having any of these three things early in the morning can alter your child’s biological clock, by limiting these you will see your child’s wake up time pushed later.

Edel MacFadden of EMF Sleep Consultancy is an Early Childhood Educator, a Montessori Teacher and a Certified Infant and Child Sleep Consultant. 

Edel's main passion has always been in early childhood education with a strong passion on sleep and routine. As a mum of two daughters, she understands the effects of sleep deprivation, primarily from having her own reflux baby. Edel brings compassion and understanding to the struggle this can be for a family. To get in touch, reach out via the below: