Do you find your little one often wakes up between 4:00am and 5:30am, and they need your help to resettle (or struggle to resettle at all)?
Check the temperature and humidity in their room at this time – the results may surprise you!
Although the room temperature may have been perfect when you put your baby to bed the evening before, you may find that the room has become very cold and dry by sunrise.
The coldest time of night is actually around dawn – it's colder at sunrise than it is in the middle of the night!
This is because the sun’s rays are still very weak at sunrise: the sun is too weak at this time of day to warm up the ground quickly. The space around us has become very cold overnight and even when the sun rises, the ground is still cooling off faster than the sun can warm it up.
If your little one is a very early riser who always seems to wake up right at dawn, and really struggles to settle back to sleep again, check the temperature and humidity at that time of day – you may find it’s much colder than when you settled them to sleep the night before.
The ideal room temperature for sleep is between 19°C - 21°C (66°F to 69°F): if the room is warmer than this, your baby could become too hot in their bedding overnight, and any cooler than this can cause your baby to become chilly. We want to keep the room at this comfortable temperature, then use tools like bedding, a heat pack and your Glow Dreaming to make the perfect sleep environment.
What can you do?
On cold nights, dress your baby in layers of bed clothing, sleeping bag and/or blankets made of natural fibers like cotton, bamboo or linen: these are also known as breathable fabrics because they allow air to circulate easily. Body heat will be contained within the layers of fabric, keeping your baby nice and warm without the risk of them overheating.
Safe sleeping guidelines also recommend keeping your baby’s head uncovered overnight, and tucking blankets under the arms and across the chest.
To help your little one resettle if they wake from a chill around dawn, it can be a good idea to use a warm (not too hot) heat pack to gently warm up the sheets in their bed while you settle them.
If your baby is younger than 12 months, pop the warm pack in the sheets while you comfort your little one with a cuddle or feed. When you put your baby back into their bed, remove the heat pack – it's not safe to leave anything in the cot with your young baby.
If your little one is 12 months or older, you can leave a warm pack in the sheets with them while they resettle and sleep: keeping the heat source close to the body helps relax the muscles and soothe us back to sleep.
Heat packs are a much better way to warm up your little one than using central, ducted or oil heaters overnight. Using air heaters in the room can not only make the room too hot, they also dry out the air in your baby’s room, causing the humidity to drop below the healthy levels that support deep, relaxing breathing overnight.
The National Asthma Council recommends that we keep room humidity between 30% - 50% to support easy, healthy breathing in adults: within this range, the humidity prevents the nasal passages from drying out. Babies have much narrower nasal passages than adults, so we find that babies respond well to slightly higher humidity levels, between 40-60% overnight.
Use the humidifier in your Glow Dreaming overnight to keep the room humidity within these healthy levels every night. Fill your humidifier with 450ml clean, fresh tap water – you can add our organic, medicinal-grade essential oils on top of the water if your baby is at least 8 weeks old. Turn the humidifier on to the Overnight setting: on this setting, the humidifier will turn itself off when the water level is very low, to prevent the humidifier from running on an empty water tank. You will get at least 10 hours run time, though you may get longer! The pink noise and red LED light will not turn off – these settings will stay on all night when you use the Overnight setting, and you can turn these off in the morning when it’s time to get up.