How to Get Your Newborn to Sleep: Advice From A Newborn Photographer


May 23, 2022

Welcome to the world of parenthood, a beautiful journey filled with countless precious moments and, of course, some sleepless nights. If you’re finding it challenging to get your newborn to sleep, you’re not alone. As a newborn photographer in Northern Virginia, I’ve had my share of newborns who just wouldn’t snooze for their session. I don’t want this to be something you fear prior to your special day, though! Those experiences have taught me a few tricks that I’m happy to share with you!

In this article, you’ll get all the advice from a newborn photographer in Northern Virginia (me) on how to get your newborn to sleep. Let’s dive in!

Check Their Basic Needs

Do they need food? Are they wet? Do they feel warm or cold?

If your newborn isn’t sleeping during their newborn photoshoot, the first thing you should do is check their basic needs. Are they hungry? Wet? Cold? Hot? Checking on these things can help you troubleshoot why your newborn won’t sleep and help them get the rest they need.

If they’re hungry, by all means, feed your little one! I can capture that on camera for you if you’d like and get a special little bonding moment! If they need a diaper change, not a problem! Maybe they’re hot or cold, we can adjust the temperature. As a newborn photographer in Northern Virginia, I know that your newborn essentially runs. the. show. I’m just…capturing it!

A mother trying to get her baby to sleep during their newborn session captured by a newborn photographer in Northern Virginia

Try Using a Soothing Device From Your Newborn Photographer In Northern Virginia

A lot of newborns find comfort in certain noises, so using a soothing device like a white noise machine can be really helpful. The sound of the machine can help them calm down and fall asleep. If you’re using a white noise machine, make sure to test it out before your session. Some machines are really loud and could wake your baby up if they’re not used to it. I do have my own machine, the baby shusher, and it has been quite the miracle worker during a session as well!

Another option is to try a sound machine app on your phone. There are a ton of them available, and many of them are free.

Wrap Them in a Swaddle

Who doesn’t love being snuggled up in a cozy blanket? As a newborn photographer in Northern Virginia, I know that newborns are no different!

Wrapping your baby in a soft, lightweight swaddle or tight blanket can help them feel secure and relaxed. It’s also a great way to keep them from wiggling around too much during their session.

dad, son, and baby captured by a newborn photographer in Northern Virginia

Let Your Newborn Photographer Capture Some Bonding Time With Your Newborn

Sometimes, all your newborn needs is some quality time with you. Cuddling, talking, and singing to them can help them relax and feel comfortable.

Bonding with your baby during their session can also help them feel more secure when they’re being photographed. They’ll know that you’re there for them and that they’re safe.

Keep Calm

As a new mom, it’s important to remember to stay calm during your newborn photoshoot. You might not know this, but newborns can sense your emotions. As a newborn photographer in Northern Virginia, I know that if you’re feeling stressed or anxious, your baby will pick up on that. They might start to cry or get fussy because they can sense your unease. Taking a few deep breaths and focusing on being calm can help you and your baby relax. It might even help them fall asleep!

newborn resting their head on their hands captured by a newborn photographer in Northern Virginia

dog nudging a newborn baby who has their eyes closed and resting on their hands. The image was captured by a newborn photographer in Northern Virginia

Conclusion: How To Get Your Newborn To Sleep

In conclusion, getting your newborn to sleep can be a challenge, but it’s not an insurmountable one. With patience, consistency, and the right strategies, you can guide your little one to sleep. Remember, every baby is unique, and what works for one may not work for another. So, don’t be disheartened if the first method you try isn’t successful. Keep trying different techniques until you find what works best for your baby.

Ready to schedule your newborn sessions with a newborn photographer in Northern Virginia? Let me capture this special time for you and your family! As a newborn photographer in Ashburn, VA, I specialize in capturing those precious moments that you’ll want to remember for a lifetime. I cannot wait to hear from you to get your special day on the books!

Want even more resources? Check out some of my other posts below:

  1. Stacey says:

    Awww such a great post! So many helpful tips, and love that you capture them as they are. Acknowledging their needs and going with the flow definitely makes the newborn session that more enjoyable! Well done!

  2. Christie says:

    These tips bring back to many memories of when my now teenage daughters were babies!!! Your newborn clients are so lucky to have you capture this special time for them!

  3. Monica Simpson says:

    My oldest is 12 and I recently have started babysitting my friend’s newborn. It’s been so long! I forgot how tricky those little cuties can be.

  4. Nadalie says:

    Im gonna show this to my sister who just gave birth!! This will surely help her plan her baby photography!

  5. Sarah says:

    These are great tips! Those newborn photos are important and you will keep them forever! Fortunately both of my sons did pretty well at their newborn photoshoots! I love the pics in your post!

  6. bella says:

    These images are so pretty, I dont have kids yet! your images are so so good!!! thanks for sharing your work

  7. Tisha says:

    Having a newborn is stressful, these are all helpful tips I wish I would have had when I had my oldest

  8. Alec says:

    Great advice and beautiful work!!

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