Sleep training

Holly - posted on 02/19/2016 ( 9 moms have responded )

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Which book/ method did everyone use and what age did you start? I know this is not an original question, but my 4 month old is up more than 4 times a night....im desperate!

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Sarah - posted on 02/19/2016

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If he weighs more than 10 pounds, you can anticipate that he will drop one night feed. So he may go down at 9, eat at 11 and 1am, then sleep thru til 6 or 7. I agree that co-sleeping just causes issues for baby later (no debate please) room sharing is fine and recommended by the AAP. I went crazy with my baby in the same room, every little squeak woke me up, so I did the baby monitor instead.
Few suggestions; nursing at bedtime and lay baby down right before he falls asleep, if he wake a cries then keep nursing to sleep for a bit yet. Laying him down awake helps him learn to make that final descent to sleep on his own, but he is still young for that. When he wakes to eat, nurse one side, change diaper, and nurse the other side. Then he will get a full feed and not just a snack.
My pediatrician gave me this advice: You cannot over feed a breastfed baby, it is OK to let your baby nurse for comfort, it is OK to nurse all the way to sleep, trust your gut you are probably right.
Hang in there you are really close to him sleeping thru. Keep asking questions. So many moms here to help.

Dove - posted on 02/19/2016

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I don't 'sleep train'. Every child will sleep through the night (or comfort themselves back to sleep) when they are physically and emotionally ready to do so. My daughters slept 12 hour nights at 6 months... for a month. Then they were up 1-2 times/night until 14ish months. My son didn't sleep through the night (10-11 hours) more than a few random times until he was 2. He was up nursing 1-5 times/night til that point.

Night waking is normal. Dealing w/ it is part of a parent's job. Exhausting? Sure, but it's life. Nap/rest when you can and let your child mature at his own rate. CIO in infancy has been shown to potentially cause life long brain damage.

♫ Shawnn ♪♫♫ - posted on 02/19/2016

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He's 4 months old. At this age, he's still needing night feeds.

I would suggest to not co sleep with this one. I didn't co sleep with either of mine, both were sleeping through the night around 8 months. Sleeping through, mind you, is any stretch of time that is 4 or more consecutive hours

Sarah - posted on 02/19/2016

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Good call Raye- I did not notice "Husband sleeps in my sons room"
I am a firm believer in the marital bed. My kids are welcome to sleep on the floor of our room (we actually have a cot that slides out from under the bed to keep them up off the cold Midwestern hardwood floor) but they may not sleep in our bed.
So right now you have a husband banished to a child's room, a baby up 4x a night and 4 yo sleeping thru in your bed? What a mess, get that 4 yo out and in his own bed. End of story on that. At 4 he can and should sleep in his own space. Let dad back into the bed, it is his bed after all. Keep new baby in a crib or bassinet and do not start co-sleeping with this one.
Falling asleep and falling back to sleep is a skill. Imagine you go to bed, then you rouse and note your pillow is gone, will you just drift back to sleep or will you wake up and look for your pillow? This is where you 4 year old is, he rouses and sees he is in mom's bed and company and goes back to sleep, if in his own room/bed he will wake and holler. You need to teach him that he can sleep in his own bed, all night, every night. The baby will probably get the hang of it as long as you don't create poor falling to sleep and returning to sleep habits .

Raye - posted on 02/19/2016

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So you're having your older kid sleep in bed with you and your husband sleeps in a different room... This does not sound like a good idea. My sister and her husband were this way. Sister let both boys co-sleep with her and hubby slept on the couch. Sister does not have a strong marriage, and I feel that they're heading for divorce.

Your kids need to have a certain amount of independence from you (and you need to keep the connection with your husband). They need to be able to self-soothe themselves back to sleep if they wake at night (except storms or nightmares). The little one will need you for feeding, but as Sarah said -putting him in his crib drowsy but not yet asleep will train him to be able to fall back asleep on his own.

Most babies are ready to sleep 8 hours at a time after six months. This may be delayed a little for breastfeeding babies because they metabolize breast milk relatively quickly and require more frequent feedings. Also make sure your kids are getting enough sleep (about 14 hours total per day for a 4 month old, 11-12 hours per day for a 4 year old). If your children are up late, they may become overtired, which can cause them to take longer to fall asleep, to wake up more often during the night, and to wake up in the early morning. Routines matter, too. You don't need a strict one with a baby at 4 months because he isn't ready to sleep through the night anyway, but once your baby is older, establish a bedtime routine and keep it every night. Children need consistency to help them feel safe and secure.

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Holly - posted on 02/19/2016

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Thanks. His current schedule that he created for himself is bedtime at 6:30pm, up at 7:30pm for another feed, than at 11:30, 1, 3...at this point he often doesnt go down until 4... he's then up at 5 then 6:30 for the day. He takes his first nap at 8 am for 1.5 to 2 hrs. My first son was like this as well...just fussier. Gabriel- my 4 month old is 16lbs. Just a hungry guy i guess. I am absolutely ok with waking up 2-3 times a night..Im not a fan of the cry it out method...im ok with 2-3 minutes of tears. I guess ill just keep chugging along...doing the bedtime while he's dozy but not asleep.

Sarah - posted on 02/19/2016

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BTW someone on the site is soliciting a "sleep consultant" You pay for advice on how to get your kid to sleep at night- beware of such nonsense! You will figure it out, and everyone here will help!

Holly - posted on 02/19/2016

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Hi Sarah,
Yes im breastfeeding. Im trying to be proactive on sleep training with my second son - my first guy whos 4 just started sleeping through the night...with me. Husband sleeps in my sons room.

Sarah - posted on 02/19/2016

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That is not atypical for a 4 month old to get up a few times a night. Are you breastfeeding? That make a huge difference in the advice I'd give to you at 4 months old.

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