Mindell has some tips: For the first six weeks, make feeding your baby and sleeping a priority. Sleep when the baby is sleeping. Breastfeeding moms can pump their milk and allow someone else to take over at least one feeding during the day. Enlist help to take over some of the other household chores. Try to keep a schedule. For the first few weeks, newborns will wake up and feed on a seemingly erratic schedule. By the time a baby reaches four to six weeks, try to get into a regular feeding pattern.
If a baby is feeding every three-and-a-half hours, Mindell suggests waking and feeding every three hours. That will help to establish a feeding routine and prevent the baby from waking up very hungry and irritable. By the time the baby is eight to twelve weeks old, a regular routine can be established, giving the mom more predictability and better control over her day. Establish feeding, nap and bed times.
Once you have developed a more predictable pattern of care, try to have the baby feed, nap and go to bed at about the same time every day. It will help reinforce the routine and train the baby to go to sleep (and stay asleep) more naturally. Although some parents believe they should let the baby dictate when to eat and sleep,
Mindell says most infants do better when they have a more rigid schedule of care. There is a light at the end of the sleep-loss tunnel for new moms. Mindell says most babies are able sleep through the night, or at least for an extended period of time between three and six months.