Baby has finally arrived, and it’s the first night home from the hospital- but what should your baby wear to sleep at night? And what about your older toddler? Hi, I’m Lauren, certified Sleep Specialist with Sleep and the City, and I’m talking today about how to dress your child comfortably at night during any season (and at any age!) for under $30 and provide the optimal environment for quality sleep. Throughout my post today I’ll also include some of my favorite examples of clothing and bedding from TealBee.com, a company that has found success in using safe, comfortable, and sophisticated styles (without the big price tag!) in baby clothing and bedding; so let’s dive in!
Ideal Room & Body Temperature
Let’s first start with the perfect room temperature for your infant or toddler, which ideally should be between 68-72 degrees Fahrenheit. For your little one’s body temperature, the AAP says that a normal body temperature for a healthy baby is between 97 and 100.3 degrees Fahrenheit, which most doctors will agree with. Keeping this in mind, it’s important to dress baby according to reduce chances of discomfort or overheating. A great rule of thumb: dress baby in ONE additional layer that you’re what you’re comfortable wearing at night in the same room. To easily test your baby’s room temperature, I recommend using the Gro Egg Room Thermometer, that will change colors to tell you how warm (or cool!) baby’s room is.
In order for your baby or toddler sleep through the night, you’ll want them to be as comfortable as possible throughout any season. The organic cotton sheets from TealBee feature multiple neutral prints (we love the milk bottle print for under $20!) that are good to go with any nursery design, and help keep baby comfortable at night. It’s important to keep baby’s health in mind as well, which is why I recommend organic mattresses like the Pebble Pure mattress from Nook, or at the very least an organic mattress cover or allergy mattress protector to reduce the emission of undesirable mattress gases.
How to Dress your Newborn & Infant
A great rule of thumb: dress baby in ONE additional layer that you’re what you’re comfortable wearing at night in the same room. I like to pair one article of clothing, like the organic cotton Brushed Dots Infant Sleeper (so cute and Instagram-worthy!) with a seasonably-appropriate sleep sack like the TealBee Infant sleeping bag. The TealBee sleeping bag is made of super soft bamboo cotton, and is ideal for babies up to 6 months. I recommend using a onesie and sleep sack for the summer months, or a long sleeves and a heavier sleep sack for the colder times of the year. For those Mamas that do better with a chart, here is a wonderful example of a Sleep Temperature Guide from Aden & Anais:
The TOG indicates approximately how many blankets a sleeping sack or bag is equivalent to. Bags with rating 1.2 or below are for spring/summer use. Bags with rating 2-2.5 are for autumn/winter. For Mamas with an infant still in a swaddle, a great combination would be a solid short-sleeve onesie paired with the Infant sleeping bag, seen here in the alphabet print for the summer, and the Infant Sleeper in Brush Dots seen here paired with the Bamboo Sleep Sack in Rose Quartz for winter. Once your baby is able to roll from back to stomach, or shows signs of being ready, you'll want to gradually remove the swaddle by taking one arm out for 2-3 nights, followed by the other arm and keep baby swaddled waist-down or within a sleep sack as mentioned above. And remember, any time you make changes to a baby's sleep, expect some fussing possibly while baby adjusts to their new night time outfits. (Always be sure to check with your doctor on how to correctly swaddle or wrap your new baby to avoid the chances of overheating.)
How to Dress your Toddler (12+ months)
After 12 months, using a sleep sack is still a perfectly good solution to keep your little one’s feet warm at night, but also the age where you can introduce a blanket into the crib. I’m currently using the Little Unicorn Cotton Muslin blanket for my oldest child, that is big enough for a parent to snuggle under too while reading books at bedtime! If your toddler is more comfortable sleeping without a blanket, try the ultra-soft bamboo Dreamsie sleep suit (seen here on 3-year old Harper) for the early walkers and toddlers. This suit goes all the way up to size 2-3T and has a generous fit, with naturally thermal regulating bamboo which is designed to keep them warmer in the winter, and cooler in the summer! Sleep sacks from TealBee will not only keep your toddler warm at night, but also safe; wearing a sleep sack at night makes it much more difficult for a curious toddler to throw a leg over the side of the crib.
What NOT to Do
The AAP firmly recommends nothing in the crib or bassinet under 12 months of age to reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, or SIDS. This includes heavy blankets, hats, beanies, or thick crib bumpers. If you feel as though baby is cold, add an additional layer to his or her outfit.
Other Safe Sleeping Tips:
A well-rested baby is a SAFE baby. Numerous studies have shown that overtired children sleep temporarily sleep harder & deeper than other babies, putting them at possible higher risks for medical conditions such as SIDS, blocked breathing, etc. (If you suspect your baby is overtired, download one of our Sleep Survival Guides or contact firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss options specific to your sleep issues.)
Give your baby their own safe sleeping area in the same room as an adult for at least 6-12 months
Provide a safe sleeping environment for naps & nighttime
Always put baby down in sleeping area on their back, not their side or stomach
Have your baby sleep with their face and head uncovered
Keep baby in a smoke free environment
White noise is continuously running; a one with low rumbling controlled from a smart phone is best, here is our favorite!
For more professional Baby & Toddler Sleep Ideas and Help, email us at email@example.com
Lauren Olson, is a 3-time Certified Child Sleep Specialist. All opinions above are her own.