“My baby is 10 months old and still gets up to eat frequently every night, then, she needs me to rock her back to sleep, I am exhausted. What can I do to get baby to sleep through the night?”
To avoid this scenario, teach your baby to fall asleep on his/her own from an early age. It is recommended that you wait on sleep training till baby is 2-3 weeks to give baby a chance to adjust to life outside your womb.
Using the following 2 skills you will be most effective at teaching baby to fall asleep independently.
Skill #1: Observe baby’s patterns of behavior:
Babies function on a 90-minute sleep/awake cycle. They are active for 90 minutes and then need to sleep for around 90 minutes.
This allows you to structure the day around this to maximize baby’s sleep.
While awake baby is absorbing information, and learning new things at an amazing rate which is why, at the end of the 90 minutes, baby needs to sleep and recharge. So, stop what you are doing, cuddle baby until he/she is quiet and relaxed, and then put baby down in bed to fall completely asleep on his/her own.
When baby is about 3-4 months old this same cycle persists, but instead of needing to sleep every 90 minutes, your baby may stay awake for multiples of the 90-minute cycle e.g. 180 minutes and then need to go down for a nap.
Dr. Polly Moore in her book, The Natural Baby Sleep Solution, teaches about this in detail. I highly recommend you read it.
Skill #2: Learn baby’s sleep cues:
As soon as you recognize a sleep cue get baby in bed as soon as you can. If you wait till the latest sleep cue, which is crying, you may end up with an overtired baby who is ‘fighting’ sleep.
Common sleep cues in babies.
1.Eye rubbing: Babies who are tired generally rub their eyes either on your clothing, on a surface like a blanket or, when older with his/her fists.
2.Withdrawal: as baby gets tired he may stop playing and interacting with you.
A young newborn may or may not show these cues, so observe baby’s sleep/awake cycles instead.
Every baby is unique, so whatever your baby does right before falling asleep will be his own personal cue.
I would like to know your comments or questions. Please post them below.
To your holistic health,