10 things guaranteed to ruin your baby’s sleep


Whoever coined the phrase “sleep like a baby” obviously had no experience of what it takes to put a baby down: the endless rocking and soothing, the hopeful glance to see if it’s safe to exit the room, and the crashing disappointment when you realise that it’s not. Worse than all of these, of course, is the intrusion of a seemingly innocuous household noise that quickly and efficiently puts an end to any hope of napping.

ALSO SEE: 4 ways you could be sabotaging your baby’s sleep

We asked Living and Loving moms to list their worst culprits.


They’re Johannesburg’s alarm clock. Worst still, if they don’t (by some miracle) wake the baby, they sound so much like a crying infant that I’ll run to check if everything is OK in the nursery – and that, of course, wakes my daughter. – Jo

The mielie lady

I used to think there was no such thing as a mielie lady outside of Madam & Eve, but it turns out there’s one in my suburb and she does her rounds at exactly the same time as my baby goes down for a nap. – Bridget

Squeaky knees

It’s the worst when your own body is the traitor! Actually, though, anything that squeaks must go, including mattress springs, floorboards and doors. – Lenore


The things you forget about before you put them down, like a door or window you forgot to close and bangs in the wind, or the phone you forgot to put on silent! – Jennifer


Enough said. Barking dogs are also the worst, especially when they’re barking because someone rang the doorbell – Claire

Closing the curtains

It seems like such a simple, innocent thing to do, but it can really cause havoc. – Jolene

Noisy eating

Knives and forks clinking against the plate. – Nikki


Seriously, though, it seems any random sound will wake them, especially buzzing mosquitos, the wind in the trees or even the neighbour’s kids chatting. – Sarah

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