Any suggestions for sleep training a 4 month old????

Heather - posted on 09/18/2009 ( 7 moms have responded )

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We have been attempting to "ferberize" our son, but it is not going very well. It takes over an hour to get him down, and he is not sleeping for very long. Last night we put him down at 7:30 and he finally went to sleep at 10:00. I finally took him out of the crib and soothed him to sleep. He had been upset for far too long and we couldn't take it anymore. Someone suggested moving his bedtime to 9ish, as he will be exhausted and fall asleep on his own; won't he be overtired and less likely able to soothe himself?? Any and all suggestions welcomed:)

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Ambila - posted on 09/19/2009

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Hi Heather, This worked 4 me and my 2 kids. At 8pm I feed them make sure they r well fed , Then give them a good bath. massage and rub them with baby oil. i then make sure no noise and lights off i lay with them and pat them untill they sleep off. I no it worked with my children so 8pm was always their bed time . Having a routine and being consistent works. try it no harm. Hope it helps u.

Carolyn - posted on 09/19/2009

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I told all my parents. Baby will cry because that is their only way to communicate at this age. I believe it should not be ignored, it should be addressed. Think back to the kind of surroundings you had when you were pregnant. Did or do you stay up till around 10pm on a normal basis. Infants even though not born do amazing things. Like recognizing parents voices, knowing the soothing surroundings, knowing what kind of surroundings make him or her comfortable. Try the warm bath and reading to them from whom ever is more calming; mom or dad. The steady consistent sound of most familiar voice has a better chance at getting the child to calm down. I do believe in limited time naps and not over stimulating the child before bed time. Best of luck.

Amy - posted on 09/19/2009

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i live in australia and had the same problem when my baby was young. we have a place called tricillian which is a sleep hospital for baby's. it was my saving grace they let him cry him self to sleep but they also tought me how to read his crys so he didnt cry for any longer than 5 mins. within 5 days at the hospital he was fine to sleep on his own and not to mention ALL NIGHT. it was the best thing i could have ever done not only for me but my baby too i coldnt believe how much happier he was after getting enough sleep maybe google tricillian AUS and mayb u can find somethin similar where u are.

Cathralynn - posted on 09/18/2009

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I'm gonna agree with the others, 4 mo is too early for sleep training. I don't have huge problems with cio but think there are gentler methods and that you should repond to every cry til 6mo. I worked on establishing a bedtime routine and getting my daughter to go to sleep not on a bottle or nursing at this point. And I never bed shared. I rocked her to sleep or at least drowsy til six mo at which point she fussed at rocking and put herself to sleep on her own. She has done it since then and is 16mo now. And has slept thru since 3mo, all without crying. Routines are important and a good basis for later, not cio at this time.

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I think 4 months may be too early to successfully use the ferber method. Ferber recommends using it starting at 6 months. However, would definitely say you do not want to keep baby up later - getting him overtired will make things a lot worse. If anything you might want to move bedtime up, and make sure he's getting good naps in during the day. That will help a lot with night time sleep. A good, soothing bedtime routine is essential, too!

Gwen - posted on 09/18/2009

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I do not believe in "crying it out", especially at such a young age. Just establish a really predictable bedtime routine. 7:30 sounds like a really good time for a 4mo old. for example: swaddle him up in a cozy blankie, rock, bottle, etc. until he is nice and calm and drowsy. put him to bed with some soft background noise or music.

a human baby relies on its cry for survival by summoning a response. responding to your baby's cries builds trust and a strong, secure attachment. my daughter may not have "slept all night" as quickly as other babies, but on the flip side, she is very confident and adaptable to changes in her surroundings..which i attribute to her sense of security.
i know this goes against what many others will say, but it is our JOB as parents to respond to our children...not ignore them. I don't like to cry myself to sleep alone in the dark, so why would i put my baby through that?

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Read "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child". It answered all of my questions and made my son an excellent sleeper. You might actually need to put him to sleep earlier than 7:30 if he seems sleepy (quiet, slow blinking eyes, yawning, eye rubbing). The book gives you the clues on what to look for when your child is ready to sleep and the courage to follow through with it's ideas.

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