How Important Are Bedtime Routines?

– Written by JoAnna Inks 

sisters - JoAnna Inks Sleep Solutions

Let’s talk a little bit about bedtime routines and the number one mistake parents make during the routine.

You don’t have to be a sleep expert to know that bedtime routines are super important.  Any search you do about babies and sleep will undoubtedly tell you about how important they are.

Bedtime routines are a critical first step in creating predictability for your baby and helping your baby know they’re transitioning from day into night.

We all have routines.  Pay attention to what you do every night before you hop into bed.  Often times, things are done in the same order and even at the same time.  We would feel a little out of sorts without our routine and definitely find it harder to sleep.

The biggest mistake parents make is that sometime in the routine, the baby sleeps!  NO, shrieks the sleep consultant! LOL

You’ve given baby a bath, a massage, put jammies on, reading a book, and offering a feed.  Right there is the snag! You’re feeding your baby to sleep either on the breast or the bottle.

Most people turn the lights off, get the room nice and cozy, and that’s your baby’s cue that he’s to drift off to sleep now.  This is precisely where a change needs to be made.

I can guarantee you that if you nurse or bottle feed your baby to sleep, you’re not going to have a baby that sleeps through the night.  Period.

You’re going to find that baby often wakes 45 minutes to 1 hour later and you have to begin the process ALL over again.

  • Bath – Yep!
  • PJs – Yep!
  • Feeding – Totally fine and I even encourage a feed before bed.  But, keep the lights on and don’t let baby start to sleep.

If sleep is a journey, you don’t want any of that journey to be made during that last feed of the day.

No dozing, no fluttery eyes, no heavy blinking.  These are all signs the journey to sleep is beginning.  Avoid these!

We want baby to know that food is a wonderful step in the bedtime routine, but it’s not for the purpose of sleep.  That step comes next.

Some babies have developed a STRONG association between eating and sleeping.  In this case, I suggest you have a few steps after the feed in the routine.

Baby should then go into the crib awake so that she can make the journey to sleep on her own.  This is precisely where my sleep plans begin.

They help you navigate this tricky change so that you can minimize your baby’s upset and teach them to fall asleep peacefully on their own and sleep through the night.

Every. Single. Night.

Have a look at your bedtime routine.  There’s more than likely a significant change that needs to take place.  And, it’s probably feeding to sleep.


  • Wondering how to get your baby falling asleep without so much “help” from you every night?
  • Waiting for your baby’s sleep to get better and you keep waiting and waiting, but nothing’s changing.  In fact, it’s getting worse.
  • Always thinking there’s some reason why your baby can’t sleep?

If you answered yes to any of these, Contact Me Today for a complimentary call so that you can share your specific sleep challenges and I can tell you exactly how I can help your baby fall asleep quickly, and stop waking so many times each night in a few short days.

Here’s to a well-rested you,