How do you get your baby to have a nap in the day?

Antoinette - posted on 01/20/2010 ( 13 moms have responded )

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At about 11am my boy is sooooooooo tired he can just about fall over, but he refuses to go to sleep. If I lie down with him on the bed, he will just cry intermittently and keep trying to get off. If I put him in his cot he will scream like a pig almost non-stop. How do I get him to go to sleep without an hour's battle everyday?

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Antoinette - posted on 01/26/2010

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Thanks for all the support and suggestions! I decided to try letting him cry and settling him after 5min, then 10min, etc. We've been doing it now for 5 days, and it is really working! The first day was very tough, it took about an hour before he finally fell asleep, but now already I only have to settle him once or twice. Hopefully in a week's time, I won't have to go back to settle him at all! Thanks!

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Getting into a routine will really help you out. Everyday at the same time, tell your son that its time for nap. Turn the lights off, maybe play a little classical music, cover him up, and pat his back. The first week or two will be tough, but you need to be consistent in your routine. Pretty soon he'll be getting that rest he so desperately needs!
When I first introduced nap time to my son, he had a hard time staying in his crib. It became a problem when I had to go back to work, and he was crying a lot at his day care. I eventually let him cry it out in the crib, until he would go in without a fuss. It takes time, and a lot of patience. I keep up his class's routine at home, so that at nap time, when the lights go off, he lies down by himself and gets cozy. He knows its time to rest. Hang in there! Have patience! Good luck!

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Dorothea - posted on 02/04/2010

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my little one is liek that as well, but we give him a cuppy and daddy sits in the rocking chair with him and he falls asleep. but when he gets really cranky and cant decide what he wants, we bring him upstairs, and watch a movie[[his pavs are pirates of the carribean and dukes of hazzard]] and hell zonk out almost immeadiately.

Sarah - posted on 02/03/2010

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I had a similar problem. I tinfoiled his windows so his room was pitch black with the light off. now within 5 minutes he's asleep.

Joy - posted on 01/31/2010

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try putting him down 45min to an hour earlier....when babies are so wound up and tired they find it hard to settle and it makes it very hard for them to sleep. Same with us. When we are stressed and over tired we toss and turn.good luck.

Gemika - posted on 01/28/2010

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How old is he? I would say that gentleness is paramount, and consistency is the key. I always breastfeed my son to sleep and he knows the cue words "Night Night" which I ONLY use when putting him to sleep. I think it is important to KNOW that they are tired if you are going to try put them down, so you can follow through without fear that you are forcing them. And I would say keep cuddling him to sleep, or "play dead" yourself. Let him walk around, with the door closed if necessary. Use your instincts. Perhaps keep getting him in the bed when he gets up and gently, but firmly saying "night night". I have always fed my son to sleep and I have no problem with this because of the sleepy hormones contained in breastmilk and Im not planning to rush weaning.

Ruchi - posted on 01/27/2010

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my daughter is 16m old and really when faced with overtiredness, a soft massage of her back and legs helps putting her to sleep. This way she doesn't waste time crying as the massage relaxes her.

Brandy - posted on 01/26/2010

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My daughter at between 12-2 we put her down for a nap my husband or i will give her a hug and kiss and then the other will do the same and then we set her down and tell her that its time to go night-night and to go to bed. She walks into her room gets into her bed and we cover her up tell her mommy and daddy love u its time to go night-night and give her a kiss (shes in a toddler bed) we closes the door and let her go to sleep. sometimes she cries but most of the time she doesnt. we check on her after about a half hour. she sleeps for about 2-3 hours. she goes to bed about 8 or 9ish and wakes up at 8-10ish. I can think my husband for her wonderful sleep habits! he worked with her so much while i was gone at basic training.

Meryl - posted on 01/21/2010

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I second Kathy's recommendation of a routine! Much as I was against the idea before I had my little girl (I am not a good routine person), having a routine for her guarantees she's not running around overtired or hungry and as a result she is a really cheerful and easygoing baby.

I find that the darker I can make the room for daytime naps, the better. First I make sure she's not hungry when trying to get her to sleep so snacks come about an hour to half an hour before naps. Then I tell her nap time is coming in advance so she knows what to expect. We'll do quieter activities such as reading or even watching a video for about 10 minutes and then we put her down in the darkened room with quiet music and a few toys in her crib (She adores glowworm). She may fuss initially, but for the most part she's out within 5-15 minutes.

Cassidy is still taking 2 naps a day of anywhere from 1-2hrs a piece so we're very fortunate!

Kathy - posted on 01/21/2010

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My son is just in a routine. He eats lunch at noon and when he is done. We walk in to his room together he climbs into his toddler bed lays down I turn on classical music and read him a book then turn light off. and I set there beside his bed he then falls asleep in 5-15min. later. I do the same thing at bedtime. He just knows I guess. Once you set a routine and do the same thing ever day he well just know what is coming.

Sunrise - posted on 01/21/2010

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Maybe try getting him to lay down before he's overtired? I've read and dealt personally with babies who when they are overly tired it is HARDER for them to fall asleep.
My husband rocks our LO for a few minutes then puts her in her crib and tells her "it's time to go to bed, lay down" AND SHE DOES!!! She doesn't do that for mommy...lol. I rock her, sometimes I will nurse her but I really try to nurse 30 minutes before she goes down so the sugars aren't on her teeth. Then, when she is drowsy but not sleeping I will lay her down. Occassionally she will cry for a minute or two.

Elisa - posted on 01/21/2010

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It's so hard when your baby doesn't sleep. My sympathies. We used Dr Christopher Green's technique of controlled crying (get his book 'Toddler Taming' it was very helpful). It took us about a week of our daughter crying and you have to do it with tough love, but we have a peaceful 2.5hr sleep time every afternoon now. The technique is settling them after 5mins, then waiting 10mins next time then slowly extending the time before you go in and settle them. He suggests never taking them out of the room and keeping the stimlus to a minimum. Hope you find a solution that works for you.

Christa - posted on 01/20/2010

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I had to let my little girl cry it out. It may take a week of crying. But I would just put her in her crib. Tell her it was night night time, and walk out. She would cry for an hour or so. I would go in once to tell her it was ok and lay her back down, tell her it was night night time, and walk out. I wouldn't go back in again. It's really hard to listen to them cry, and i felt horrible, but she needed a nap! Each day the crying span got shorter. And now she lays down just fine. Once in a while she'll test me and try to start fussing again, but i just walk away after telling her i love her and she goes to sleep for about an hour to two depending on how long she's been awake before her nap. Good luck with whatever you decide to do.

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