8 Tips to get your newborn to sleep for photos

By Karina Wells, Enhance Studios

A photographers guide....

As a newborn photographer I spend a lot of time getting your babies to sleep. I have a host of tricks that I use, not all tricks work on all babies. But here are my “go to” favorite tricks and tips.

1. Centering myself – If i’m not calm in a session your baby wont be either. This naturally applies to you; Mum and Dad as well. No matter how loud and painful that scream sounds I cannot let myself react with anything but calmness. The little ball of emotion and feeling that is a newborn, will instantly understand that something isn’t quite right, and respond.

2. Vibration – Your baby would have been rocked to sleep in your belly during the day and would have been active at night. Rocking, gently wobbling, bouncing up and down and patting on the bum are all good things to do to help you baby relax and sleep.

3. A Shusher – This is on for almost an entire newborn session with us. Alternatively, you can download white noise apps on your phone; However, we love the shusher because there is no risk of someone ringing though and interrupting. It also means while you're trying to get baby to sleep you can still use your phone. It has two settings: fifteen or thirty minutes. Afterwards, it automatically shuts off.

4. Third eye massage – There are loads of benefits to massaging the third eye. I simply run my thumb or finger from the third eye position down the nose, it encourages the baby to close his or her eyes.

5. Warmth – It’s around 36-37 degrees celsius in the womb whilst your baby is in there, so they are sensitive to the cold and temperatures below this point. To ensure your best chance of getting them asleep get them warm in the studio. In a newborn session we tend to have 3 heaters going (no that is not a typo).

6. Wrapping – Your little one hasn’t really understood that they can control their arms and legs yet and so these strange things waving in front of their faces can be kind of scary. They feel far more safe and secure wrapped up firmly; And therefore they are more likely to relax and fall asleep.

7. Nice smells – We use essential oils in the studio to help get your baby to sleep. We also wash all our blankets with some lavender and use lavender bags to keep them smelling nice while in storage. We may not have direct proof that this works but i’m so sure it helps.

8. A full belly – A hungry baby doesn’t sleep. A full belly is essential to us getting the baby to sleep - just like us adults, we don't like to sleep with a grumbling tummy.

Note: The views and advice expressed on this blog post are those of the author and are not representative of the Pregnancy Babies & Children's Expo.

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