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How Warmer Temps Affect Baby’s Sleep

Expert tips on keeping baby safe during summer sleep.

How Warmer Temps Affect Baby’s Sleep

Summer can be a tricky season to keep a baby sleeping safely and comfortably. Those little babies of ours have a hard time regulating their body temperatures as well as us adults. And they have an especially tough time during a season filled with alternating blasts of air conditioning and intense heat-rays of sun.

Why all the fuss? Sleep temperature is a safety issue: when babies are hot, they have a harder time arousing, which can increase the risk of SIDS. But temperature is also about comfort, which can mean the difference between baby getting peaceful shut-eye or pulling an all-nighter. When body temperature dips at night (as it’s naturally inclined to do), it not only triggers the brain to get ready for sleep, but also results in deeper, better sleep. So keeping baby’s head nice and cool, and keeping his or her room temperature between the ideal 65 and 70 degrees, is key to the best night of baby (and, ahem, your) sleep.

Luckily, there are plenty of temperature regulating tricks and gear that can help your baby sleep like, well, a baby. Bedgear’s new Baby Performance Bedding line, for example, uses heat and moisture-wicking fabric technologies to help children regulate temperature and drift off to dreamland without a sweat. Before you head off into the hot and sticky summer, bedgear Pediatric sleep consultant Ingrid Prueher shares how you can get baby to sleep safe and sound no matter what your situation.

Situation 1: The AC in our nursery goes on and off all night, which means that the temperature fluctuates. How do I make sure that baby stays comfortable throughout the night?

In situations like this, I recommend that you use the AC during the day and fans all night to keep the temperature consistent. The on and off of the AC noise, and the fluctuation of the temperature in the room, will wake the baby up all night long. I would also recommend using bedgear Ver-Tex® temperature regulating waterproof crib mattress protector that deflects heat and repels moisture so baby sleeps cool dry and at the ideal temperature.

Situation 2: Baby loves to naps in the stroller. It’s 85 degrees and sunny out. What precautions should I take to keep baby from overheating?

Though the baby has learned to take naps in the stroller, it would be worth it to teach the baby to sleep in their home sleep environment instead on a more consistent basis. Since we live on the east coast, we know that we are not fortunate to have great weather all year round. This makes it impossible for the caregivers to provide a nap for the baby every day outside. If the caretakers had to leave the home environment during sleep times, I would recommend covering the stroller in a shade to protect him or her from UV rays and dressing the baby properly with just a onesie and a diaper. Ideally, the baby will not be exposed to the sun for long periods of time, and the caregiver will do everything to try to keep the baby in shaded areas during rest times.

Situation 3: We are going on a trip and don’t know the sleeping situation yet — it may be a house with no AC or a hotel with a strong AC unit. How can I prepare for any sleeping temperature, especially when I can’t control it?

I would recommend looking into fan or AC rentals in the area, just in case. If you cannot find one, it would be worth it to see if there is a hardware store nearby that sells fans. Depending on where you are going, the temperature of the destination maybe cool at night, and you can always end up opening the window to let in fresh air if the AC gets too cold. The key is the layers of clothing. The best way to gauge if the baby is too hot or too cold is to feel the tip of the nose and hands. If the hands are too cold, add another layer of clothing. If the baby is sweating, then strip down more.

Situation 4: We are co-sleeping with baby, adding body heat to the already high temps. How do I make sure baby doesn’t get too hot in our bed?

When bed sharing, it's imperative that safety precautions be taken if the child is under one year, as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics. The bed mattress should be placed on the floor, and use bedgear Dri-Tec® moisture wicking performance sheets. These breathable performance sheets wick away heat and moisture and regulate the body's temperature. I would also recommend using fans in the room if AC is not available. It's ideal if the baby is wearing a onesie with a diaper, especially if the room is too hot. You can go to the extent of having the baby only in a diaper, if need be.

To learn more about how to help baby sleep better all year round, join bedgear baby and Ingrid Prueher, Fox & Friends Sleep Expert and Host of Parent.com “Baby Sleep 911" web TV series on May 1st from 12pm to 3pm for a Q&A at the buybuy BABY store located on 270 7th avenue New York, NY 10001.

*We are so grateful when brands support our content and community. This post was sponsored by bedgear.

Sources:

National Center for Biotechnology Information

First Candle

Contemporary Pediatrics

American Academy of Pediatrics

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