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Clinical Specialties - Maternity

Other Maternity Information Resources

Settling Chart

Settling Activity Order

1.  Feed baby
2.  Burp baby, nappy change, cuddle time, play time, bath time - at night, do not have play time
3.  Baby shows tired signs - yawning, jerky body movements, crying, grizzling, clenched fists, arching back, stiffness, fluttering eyelids, staring
4.  Put baby to bed - reduce stimulation (dim lights, talking & singing quietly)
5.  Baby wakes within 2 hours & fed well - check the following & resettle baby:
          - Does baby have wind? Angry red face, firm stomach, draws legs up, crying
               -- Pick baby up and allow burp time, try other settling techniques
               -- Put baby to bed
          - Is baby over tired? Has baby been over-handled or over-stimulated? Baby showing tired signs as listed above
               -- Put baby in cot to settle; remove baby from visitors or area of stimulation
6.  Baby wakes 2 - 5 hours after feed; or baby wakes and did not feed well at last feed - Offer another feed


  • Gently rock baby in the cot
  • Quiet music
  • Walk in pram
  • Relaxation bath
  • Massage
  • Pat or stroke baby

Crying that is difficult to console in the early weeks and months of an infant’s life is part of normal behavioural development. Always exclude any health-related explanations for the unsettled behaviour.


  • Baby sleep cycle generally last 20 – 40 minutes. In older children the sleep cycle increases with longer periods of deep sleep.
  • A sleep cycle begins with light sleep, then deep sleep and back into a light sleep.
  • In light sleep cycles, your baby may open their eyes, grimace, suck, grizzle, look restless, smile and occassionally twitch their fingers and feet.
  • Some babies and children will be able to resettle themselves back into another deep sleep phase.
  • For those that do not resettle, place a hand on your baby and say some reassuring words or pat them to encourage your baby back to sleep.
  • Try to have a positive, consistent sleep routine to establish healthy infant sleeping behaviours.


  • Newborns sleep on average 16 – 18 hours a day having 2– 4 hour sleeps at a time.
  • At 2 – 6 months of age; 2 – 3 'day' sleeps for up to two hours each (some babies just 'cat nap' for one sleep cycle). Babies this age commonly wake once or more during the night.


  • Community Paediatric Review. The Royal Children’s Hospital, Melbourne. Sept 2011. Sleep, Vol 19, No 2.
  • Gethin A. and Macgregor B. 2011. Helping your baby to sleep why gentle techniques work best. Finch. Sydney Australia. SidsandKids Safe Sleeping


Following your discharge from hospital there are a number of community resources available to assist you. Maintain contact with your Early Childhood Centre (ECHC), and if you require further assistance you may like to:

  • Phone Tresillian (24/7), Karitane (24/7), Australian Breastfeeding Association (ABA) (24/7), GP or Paediatrician
  • Phone or see SAH Lactation Consultants - available 9am-3pm Mon-Fri, 10am-2pm Sat-Sun, for up to 6 weeks post-discharge. Please phone 9480 4071 for an appointment
  • Phone or see a Social Worker
  • Organise a home visit through the Parent Support Service at your ECHC
  • Make an appointment to see a private Lactation Consultant or Mothercraft Nurse
  • Make an appointment to see your GP

If you still require assistance there are Day Stay and Residential programs and services available:

  • Day Stay Programs - Tresillian, Koala Cottage, Camelia Cottage, Dalwood Homes
  • Residential Programs - Tresillian (Mon-Fri), Karitane (Mon-Fri), St John of God Hospital

Throughout the process of settling in at home with baby, it is important to maintain contact with your Early Childhood Centre (ECHC).

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Sydney Adventist Hospital Clinical Specialties and Services