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It is important that babies get into a daily routine as early as possible. This will simplify life for you and your baby. Routines are essential to ensure that your baby does not get overtired, too hungry, or over excited which can then translate into angry outbursts, tantrums, and rebelliousness. By sticking to a schedule, your baby will start to feel safe and secure. This will also mean less stress and anxiety for you. As you spend time with your baby, you will get an inkling of your baby’s pattern of eating, sleeping, and playing preferences as well. Based on this, you can then arrive at a schedule that is suitable for both of you.
Needs of Seven and Eight Month Old Babies
It is around this age that babies get curious about things and people around them. They are most likely to be testing out their motor skills and getting mobile. Picking up things, crawling or rolling, and babbling are just some of the things babies experiment with at this age. Seven and eight month old babies look forward to playtime and enjoy playing with you. They are also able to show their emotions and may also show signs of separation anxiety or stranger anxiety. So, it is important that you arrive at a schedule that will encourage all round development of your baby. Here are some of your baby’s needs and requirements at this age.
- Naps – Naps might be more predictable than when your baby was a newborn, but they will still be pretty erratic. Cues to look out for include rubbing the eyes, yawning, and a slowdown in activities. Try associating certain activities with nap time like changing the diaper or reading out a story. This will help your baby understand that it’s time to sleep. Be sure not to skip nap time because babies are in a phase of fast growth and can need upto seven hours of sleep during the day time.
- Meals– A baby will need to be fed several times a day – maybe every two to three hours. Once your baby starts solid foods, after six months, you might be able to co-ordinate your mealtimes. But apart from meals, your baby will still need to be fed formula or breastmilk around five to seven times daily. Again, making a small ritual of it can help your baby know when it is time to eat.
- Play – It will take some effort to understand when the best time for active or quiet play is. Some children enjoy playtime soon after they wake up from a nap. Learn to identify cues that indicate that your baby is bored such as turning fussy or expressing frustration with the toys in hand or at you in general.
- A good night’s sleep – A bedtime routine is crucial because you need it to ensure your child keeps going to sleep at a decent hour when he or she is older and at school. Babies of this age need around 12 hours of sleep every night to ensure they grow well and stay healthy. A massage, some soft music, and a bath might help your baby understand this is nighttime and the time to sleep. The aim is to ensure there is a regular pattern so that your child goes to bed easily, sleeps well, and wakes up happy every morning.
Sample Baby Schedule of Breastfeeding Mother of 7 to 8 moth old baby
While drawing up a schedule for babies this age, you should remember that they will need solid food at least two to three times each day and breast milk or formula at least five to seven times per day.
Here are some sample schedules that can give you ideas about coming up with your own based on your schedule and baby’s needs:
Schedule 1 –Stay at home mom
7 a.m.: The baby wakes up and nurses for about 20 minutes.
7:30 a.m.: Plays with toys for a while mom prepares breakfast.
8 a.m.: Baby has breakfast, which is often rice cereal or oatmeal and fruit which is mashed or pureed.
8:30 a.m.: Another round of playtime.
Between 9 and 9:30 a.m.: Baby again nurses for around 15 minutes before taking a nap.
11 a.m.: Baby wakes up and gets more playtime.
Noon: At lunchtime baby eats some mashed veggies and fruit.
12:30 p.m.: Time to play outdoors.
1:30 p.m.: Baby nurses for 15 minutes and then takes a nap.
3:30 p.m.: Baby wakes up and it is playtime outside.
4 p.m.: Another round of nursing.
5 p.m.: Time for dinner with some mashed food.
5:30 p.m.: Playtime or a stroll in the park.
6:30 p.m.: Baby gets a bath.
7 p.m.: Baby nurses for a few minutes before turning in for the night.
Baby might wake up around midnight for about 15 minutes of nursing before going back to sleep. Some children might wake up more frequently at night.
Schedule 2 – Breast pumping working mom
5 a.m.: Nurse, change baby’s clothes and diaper, and let baby down for some more time while you get ready for work.
6:45 a.m.: Nurse again and take baby to daycare.
7:30 a.m.: Baby has breakfast at daycare with some cereal and mashed or pureed vegetables and fruit.
9 to 10 a.m.: Baby takes a refreshing nap.
11 a.m.: Baby has lunch which includes pumped breast milk and baby food
1 to 2:30 p.m.: Time for baby’s afternoon nap.
3 p.m.: A healthy snack with finger food and some fruit.
3:30 p.m.: You go to pick up baby and after nursing, head home for some play time.
5:45 p.m.: Enjoy dinner with baby. Baby eats cereal, pureed vegetables, and fruit.
7 p.m.: Start the bedtime routine with a massage, followed by bath and a story. Baby then nurses and sleeps off.
Baby might wake up once during the night for a short feed before going back to sleep. Some children might need more breastfeeding at night.
Sample Baby Schedule of Formula Feeding Mother of 7 to 8 Month Old Baby
The appetite of different babies can vary and since they are still too young to accurately communicate their needs, it is best that you have an idea of how much formula your baby needs in a day. It is estimated that babies over the age of six months require about 75 ml of formula each day for 450 gm of body weight. It is important to know that babies should not drink more than 960 ml of formula in a 24-hour period. Here are some sample schedules for a formula fed baby.
Schedule 1 – Stay at home mom
6 a.m.: Baby wakes up.
6:20 a.m.: Baby has a bottle and plays for a while.
7:30 a.m.: It’s time for breakfast with the family and baby eats finger foods as well as fruit and cereal.
8:30 a.m.: Baby play with toys or sits in the bouncy chair while mom finishes chores and gets ready. Then baby takes a nap.
10:15 a.m.: On waking up, baby gets another bottle of formula. Then mom and baby go out for a while.
11:30 a.m. – noon: Come back from outing and have lunch.
12:45 – 2:30 p.m.: Baby takes a nap again and a bottle after waking.
3.00 p.m.: Some playtime outside with sibling or pet.
5:15 p.m.: Dinnertime followed by some play.
6 p.m.: Time for another bottle of formula and then the bedtime routine with bath and story.
7.p.m.: Baby is asleep and does not wake up at night.
Sometime between two and four months of age, formula fed babies stop needing a feed in the middle of the night. But every baby is unique and if your baby seems to feed too frequently, check with your doctor.
Schedule 2 – Stay at home mom of twins
Managing twins can prove overwhelming, especially if you don’t have any help. Here is a sample routine you might want to refer to:
7 a.m.: Wake up and have a bottle of formula each.
8:15 a.m.: Playtime and crawling around on the floor.
9 a.m.: Time for breakfast which could be a jar of baby food each, yoghurt, and finger foods.
Between 10 and 11:30 p.m.: The twins take a nap.
12:30 p.m.: Nap time is over and it’s time for some books and play outside.
1 to 1.30 p.m.: At lunch time, the babies have Stage 2 vegetables mashed or pureed, yoghurt, and finger foods. A bottle each of formula afterward completes lunch.
2.30 to 3 p.m.: Time to have fun with grandparents and in the bouncy chair.
4 p.m.: It’s nap time again.
5 p.m.: Nap done, the twins play with toys on the floor.
5:45 p.m.: A bottle of formula.
6.30 p.m.: The bed time routine starts with a bath and some storytelling before tucking in.
7:30 p.m.: A bottle of formula each.
8.45 pm.: Bedtime and they sleep through the night.
Schedule 3 – Working mom
In this sample schedule, the mom works full time and also has to travel on a regular basis. She gets help from a full-time nanny who doesn’t live with them.
6 a.m.: Time for baby to wake up.
6:30 a.m.: A bottle of formula and the daily dose of reflux medicine.
6:45 a.m.: Baby is dressed for the day.
7:15 a.m.: Time for baby’s breakfast which comprises of about a quarter cup of oatmeal cereal with a side of homemade pureed fruit. An egg yolk is mixed in the cereal on every other day.
7:45 a.m.: Spending time with mom.
8:30 a.m.: It’s time for nanny to take over and start the nap routine –diaper change, reading a book, a lullaby, and then into the crib.
9 to 10 a.m.: Baby takes a nap.
10 a.m.: Baby is up and gets a new diaper. It is playtime indoors and outdoors in the shade.
10:30 a.m.: Time for a bottle of formula.
10:45 a.m.: Another round of playtime.
11:30 a.m.: At lunchtime baby eats some whole-milk yoghurt mixed with half a teaspoon ground flax seed and some homemade pureed vegetables.
11:50 a.m to noon.: Nap routine and nap.
1:30 p.m.: Wakes up and has a diaper change before starting to play.
2 p.m.: A bottle of formula and then play time.
3 p.m.: Nap routine and then a nap.
4:15 p.m.: Baby is up, change of diaper, plays for a while.
5:15 p.m.: Mom is back home and gives baby a bottle as nanny prepares to leave.
5:30 p.m.: Nanny leaves and mom starts to put together dinner. Dad comes home. It’s playtime with mom and dad.
6 p.m.: Its dinner time and baby has dinner with mom and dad. Baby eats cereal, homemade pureed veggies, and pureed fruit.
7 p.m.: Time for a walk with mom and dad.
7:30 p.m.: Baby gets a nice massage, bath and changes into nightdress.
8 p.m.: A bottle of formula and reflux medicine.
8:15 p.m.: Mom starts the bedtime routine which includes brushing baby’s teeth, reading out two books, a lullaby, and then the crib.
9 p.m.: Baby is usually fast asleep and stays that way all through the night.
Breastfeeding and Formula Feeding Stay at Home Mother
Some babies need formula to supplement their diet for various reasons ranging from weight gain issues to inadequate supply of breast milk and problems with pumping. Here is a sample schedule for a baby that is breast fed and is also formula fed.
7 to 7:30 a.m.: Baby wakes up along with siblings and nurses.
8 a.m.: All children have breakfast with baby eating cereal, fruit, and a bottle of formula.
8:30 a.m.: Some days baby is bathed because breakfast gets messy. Else it’s playtime with siblings while mom eats breakfast.
Between 9:30 and 10 a.m.: Baby nurses and takes a nap. Mom tries to keep other kids busy while doing chores.
Between 11:30 a.m. and noon: Baby wakes up from his nap, and it’s time for lunch. Baby eats meat, veggies, and pureed fruit as also some finger food and a sippy cup of water
1 p.m.: Time for a stroll or swim.
Between 2 and 2:30 p.m.: Time for a second nap after nursing.
4 p.m.: Baby is up and wants to nurse.
5:30 p.m.: At dinner time baby has meat and veggies, baby food, and pureed fruit topped off by a bottle of formula.
6 to 7 p.m.: Some quiet playtime.
7 to 7:30 p.m.: Time for a bath.
8 p.m.: All kids get ready for bed and change into nightdress.
9 p.m.: Baby nurses before dozing off.
3 a.m.: Baby needs to nurse and then sleeps all night.
Thing to Consider While Deciding Routine for 7 and 8 Month Baby
You do not have to wait till your baby is a 7 month old routine can start much earlier and the sooner baby gets a schedule the easier it will be on both of you. Adequate rest, sufficient quantities of food, and enough time to play and learn are some of the things that babies of this age require. Fixing a bedtime for 7 month old babies might seem a bit too early, but you will realise that it is a good thing as your child grows. The same applies to a baby eating schedule 8 months is just the right time to start emphasising to your child that a schedule can bring some order to life.
While a general routine can help you plan your day, it is important to remember that individual needs play a large role in deciding a baby’s feeding schedule, and you are sure to find the best routine for yourself and for the baby over time.