how do i put a baby to sleep with out patting him (settling)

Ashlee - posted on 11/17/2009 ( 6 moms have responded )

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ever since birth i have had trouble putting him to sleep i have patted him to sleep since he was born and its very stressful he will be that tired and he will fight me all the way i cant just put him in the cot and he will go to sleep he screams for 1-2 hours

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Anna - posted on 11/17/2009

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My son falls asleep by nursing or sometimes we will walk up and down the hall with him. I don't think there's an easy way of doing it - it's just the way it is with babies. It takes them a long time to learn how to put themselves to sleep. Letting them cry is quite unhealthy for them as it uses up so much energy it causes their blood sugar to drop, which makes them even more upset. It also drives their levels of stress hormones very high for a long time and teaches them to be afraid of going to bed.

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Mary - posted on 11/17/2009

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my daughter was patted on the back to go to sleep now she is 7 months i rock her and sometimes rub her back this seems to of got her out of being patted, try different things u will find which is best for u

Shaina - posted on 11/17/2009

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We had a VERY hard time getting our son to sleep. We would have to hold him and as soon as we would put him down he'd wake back up and scream. We ended up keeping a log of when he would eat, sleep and play. It sounds silly but it helped us see when he was tired before he got cranky. It worked. We would give him a bath, quiet play time, feed him and lay him down. I tried to put him down awake so he could learn that it was ok to go to sleep. At first he would still fight it. I'd let him cry for only a few minutes (less than 5) I'd go in, pat his back so he could calm down and leave the room again. It took a few times, but now he goes to bed VERY well. He's 8 months old now and we have the same routine. Now I also give him a small quiet toy to play with if he doesnt feel like hes ready to go to bed. But we have NO problems now. Good luck!

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If you look at it from his perspective, he's been in this warm, safe place for 9 months and then *pow* into the harsh, bright world. He knows how to do nothing, a blank slate. Our actions as parents teach babies how things work. His screaming is because he is afraid. If he doesn't see you or smell you, you don't exist in his world any more. Can you imagine how scary that would be if the person you depend on for everything was just gone in a puff of smoke?

A routine helps babies predict what is to come. If you haven't established a routine, it may be a good time to start. I think many mums use bathtime as the main cue for baby to know bedtime is coming. Dinner, bath, quiet play and then bed. If you're breastfeeding, the easiest way to get baby to sleep is by feeding to sleep. My sons' bedtime is between 7.30 and 8.30pm, depending on how long and how late their nap was. If you set a specific sleep time, you'll find that your son will start getting sleepy, as if on cue, at bedtime.

You will still have to settle your son, but it can be easier. It sounds like he is getting overtired (which is why he fights you), which does make things more stressful. Try starting your bedtime routine at 6.30 with the aim of bed by 7.30 and see if that helps. But please don't leave him to cry for hours. As Anna said, it's not good for them and it just makes things worse in terms of trying to get him to sleep.

Another thing that will help him is to put one of your worn shirts in the cot with him. Take a shirt you've worn for a day (or two) and spread it in the cot, then put your son to sleep on top of it. As he sleeps, he will be able to smell you from the shirt and it will comfort him. Of course use a t-shirt or some kind of shirt that doesn't have any laces, strings, zips or anything that he could choke or hurt himself on.

Good luck! It does get easier as they get older. If all else fails, cuddle him and give him lots of love and kisses and just enjoy this time with your baby. They are little for such a short amount of time.

Stacey - posted on 11/17/2009

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what i found easy was to bath her b4 she went to sleep and then buy johnson bed time lotion (lavender) with talc and the bed time cream then swaddle her and she seemed to settle

Jessica - posted on 11/17/2009

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I rock my daughter to sleep, and rub her back, when she was born she was very hard to put to sleep, different thing's work for different babies.

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