Sleep disturbances and difficulty falling asleep are such a common issue for infants and children that there are dozens of products on the market to combat the problem. If your little one has difficulty sleeping, here are a few sounds that can help soothe them.
- White Noise – If your child’s difficulty sleeping is the result of noise disturbances, a white noise machine can do wonders for them. By masking sounds in other parts of the house, white noise can keep your little one sleeping soundly.
- Womb Sounds – Before birth, your baby could hear womb sounds such as mom’s heartbeat. In early infancy, these sounds may still be associated with comfort and can help a baby fall asleep.
- Soft Lullabies – Many little ones prefer the sound of a softly-played lullaby to monotonous white noise. Playing a lullaby for a child who’s put down while still awake can help them associate the sounds with putting themselves to sleep.
- Flowing Water or Falling Rain – The soft and seamless nature of moving water can be relaxing for children and adults alike. Many noise-makers designed for aiding in sleep feature a rain or ocean setting.
- Whale Sounds – Another favorite of sound-machine sleep aids, whale songs and dolphin sounds are relaxing to children of all ages. They’re also believed to stimulate brain activity by some researchers.
- Washing Machine Sounds – The combined elements of swirling water and white noise from a washing machine is among the most often recommended soothing sounds from sleep experts. Avoid wasting water and energy by purchasing a recording of washing machine sounds.
- Car Rides – Many companies that specialize in recordings of soothing, sleep-inducing sounds offer a car ride option, complete with a humming motor, rhythmic windshield wipers and the pattering of rain. This is a great way to recreate the tried-and-true car ride method of soothing your youngster to sleep without wasting gas to drive around aimlessly.
- Blow Dryer – Like the Washing Machine and Car Ride options, there are many recordings of a humming blow dryer commercially available. The sound is thought to even ease colicky babies.
- Nature Sounds – The soft sounds of blowing breezes, chirping birds and flowing water are perennial favorites of those who find it difficult to sleep, regardless of age. Many sound machines have a nature setting, due to the popularity of these sounds.
- Nighttime Sounds – Anyone who’s ever lived in a rural area can attest to the soothing quality of chirping crickets, croaking bullfrogs and faint hooting of a faraway owl. Even city dwellers can bring the sounds of the country to their little ones’ nurseries with a recording of nocturnal sounds.
When choosing musical sounds to help ease your baby, keep in mind that simple melodies are best for inducing sleep. The complexities of jazz or most classical music can be too stimulating for sleep, though many experts recommend playing these types of music during waking hours for that very reason.
Contacts and sources: