Newborn Sleep | Understanding Tired Signs in a Newborn
Episode 5 | Understanding Tired Cues
This episode is brought to you today by my free Clean Sleeping Guide that I have on my website. You can access this baby at www.jenniferbutler.com.au/clean-sleeping Now guys, this guide is the first step I take parents through when I'm looking to help them improve their baby or toddlers sleep. You are literally getting free access to the first pillar of my Triple C Approach that I use to improve baby and toddler sleep. So head on over and download yourself a copy today, jenniferbutler.com/clean-sleeping. Okay, let's get into today's episode.
newborn baby. First, before I delve into what you're looking for, let's talk a bit about why we're looking for them. Okay, so overtired babies, no matter what the age, are cranky babies, they're not happy, they're more fussy, they're unsettled. If we can avoid the overtired baby, then we are kicking goals. So the reason why we're looking at for tired signs is to avoid the overtired baby. The thing with newborns is sometimes these tired signs can be quite subtle, but once you know what you were looking for, then it can be easier to see them. I talk about a balanced approach when looking for tired signs, because, understanding what your baby's awake window, and what their normal awake window is for their age, is equally as important, and it's also going to help you, in, figuring out if what you're seeing is a tired sign. So pairing the two together is how you can hit gold in knowing when to put your baby to bed. And guess what? I'm going to do a podcast episode on awake windows, so stay tuned for that. Make sure you subscribe to my podcast so you don't miss when that episode's released.
Uh, okay. Let's talk about the tired signs. One of the first tired signs that you are looking for in a newborn baby is redness around the eyebrows. As your baby gets increasingly tired, you might notice that they actually start to redden around the eyes. It's literally as though, you and I would be getting tired, when we get the sore stinky eyes, they can get that same sort of area and the redness around the eye area. So, that's one of the key ones to be looking at for when looking for a tired sign. The second tired sign that I want you to start looking at is jerky body movement. Now, the newborn baby's movements are pretty unpredictable as it i, because they don't have a huge amount of control over their body, that's just what's going on with their development. However, start to really watch your baby, notice when they've just woken up from a good sleep, what their movements look like. And then, once you know where they're awake windows at, and you know they're coming to the end of their normal awake window, start to look out for their body movements then. Are they looking a little bit more jerky? Are they a little bit more erratic than normal? This can be a sign that your baby is getting tired.
Tired sign number three. Your baby will be unable to hold a gaze, or, really, they choose not to. Now let's get into the mind of a tiny, little, baby, looking you in the eye is kind of a big deal for them. Like, that is their play at this age, is watching you, taking in your face, observing your facial expressions and body movements, and when they're primed and ready to play, they're all for it, they're going to be watching you and super keen on what you're doing. However, once they're getting tired, maintaining that gaze for them is too much and it's actually their way of protecting themselves, and you know, indicating to us that they are tired, and that they can no longer maintain the same level of gaze, as what they are when they've had a good sleep and when they've got good energy levels. So watching for that "turning away from your face", and that "unable to hold a gaze" is a key tired sign in a newborn baby.
Okay, tired sign number four, yawning. Obviously yawning is a tired sign. It can be a tired sign for us as well. But have you also noticed that sometimes we yawn when we're maybe not necessarily tired, we could just be a little bit bored or we need a change of activity? So, yawning is definitely a tired sign if it's accompanied by other tired signs. The reason I say this is some babies, after they've had a good sleep, will yawn within minutes, or not long after waking, and it can actually indicate that they've had a really good sleep. So, it comes in about understanding their average awake time and if the yawn is happening towards the end of their normal awake time and it's paired with some of these other tired signs, then you know it's most likely going to be connected with the fact that they're getting tired.
Okay, and the lucky last tired sign we're looking for in a newborn baby is grizzling and crying. So you could imagine that when your baby is grizzling and crying that it could be the end of the awake window and that they're probably getting quite cranky by now. However, even in itself, grizzling and crying is a tricky tired sign to look for on its own. Because guess what? Babies grizzling cry for so many reasons. A grizzle and cry could mean that they're tired. A grizzle or cry could mean that they need a feed. It could mean that they're bored. It could mean that whoever's playing with them is just causing them a little bit too much stimulation and they need to check out and they're just indicating that through their cry. Crying is a form of communication. So I guess when we're looking at these tied signs, we're looking for them in conjunction with each other, because a sign alone might indicate that it's just a standalone sign, not anything to do with sleep, but when they're seen together, in say, three in a 10 minute period or so, you will be pretty safe to say that your baby needs to have a sleep. That's all for me today guys. I hope that summary of tired signs will come in handy for you in being able to observe when your baby is getting tired. Anyway, I'll join you here for the next episode. Catch you then.
Thank you so much for joining me in today's episode guys. I hope that you enjoyed it. If you did, please head on over to your podcast streaming app, whether that's apple or Spotify and leave me a review. I want this podcast to get to as many ears as possible so that other mums who might be having the same questions as you, can find a little bit of information to help their parenting journey along. And you know what? While you're over there leaving your review, please feel free to subscribe so you don't miss a single one of my episodes. And don't forget to hit me up on my socials, Facebook and Instagram @jenbutlerearlyparenting. Can't wait to bring you your next episode. I'll see you back here again then.
Thank you so much joining me in today's episode, guys. I hope that you enjoyed it. If you did, please head on over to your podcasts streaming app, whether that's Apple or Spotify, and leave me a review. I want this podcast to get to as many ears as possible so that other mums, who might be having the same questions as you can, find a little bit of information to help their parenting journey along. And you know what? While you're over there leaving a review, please feel free to subscribe so you don't miss a single one of my episodes and don't forget to hit me up on my socials, Facebook and Instagram @jenbutlerearlyparenting. Can't wait to bring you your next episode. I'll see you back here again then.