My 4 month old daughter does not fall asleep on her own

Keisha - posted on 05/15/2010 ( 5 moms have responded )




she only uses my breast to fall asleep or her father rocks her to sleep what am i doing wrong?


View replies by

Nikki - posted on 05/15/2010




Also does she have a dummy, I found I needed one when she would settle on the breast. I wasn't too keen on using one to begin with but she only has it when she is in bed, so it hasn't bothered me because it made such a big difference getting her to sleep. Plus by 4 months you shouldn't have to worry about her getting nipple confusion because your breast feeding should be pretty established by now.

Nikki - posted on 05/15/2010




It is very normal at this age, but it is a good idea to try and get her to self settle as soon as possible, more so for yourself. She is too young for control crying, or crying it out; research has shown that it can be detrimental to babies under 6 months.

I had the same problem when my daughter was 6 weeks old, I went to a sleep training course through my local health clinic.

The problem with being rocked to sleep is that babies usually wake up after 30 minutes and if they are not in the same position they were in when they went to sleep, generally they will not self settle back to sleep.
If she falls asleep on your breast then that's fine simply put her to bed, otherwise put her down to bed and sit with her, you could pat her back lightly or play with her hair until she goes to sleep. For my daughter this took about 2 hours the first time, I even had to give her another feed and change her nappy, but I persevered, if she got upset I would give her a cuddle then put her back down.

Eventually each time I put her down to bed it took me less time to get her to sleep, at 6 months old she now self settles 90% of the time. If she wakes within 30-40 minutes, even if she looks awake try and settle her back by patting her or stroking her hair again.

The other thing I did was buy a musical star thing which projects pictures onto the ceiling, my daughter will usually fall asleep watching this now.

Emily - posted on 05/15/2010




I would say that you need to teach her not to pacify while nursing. If she is just pacifying remove her and give her a paci. It will take a few nights to get her out of the habbit but in a short time she will learn to fall asleep without you having to nurse her. The Lord bless you!

Stina - posted on 05/15/2010




You are doing a great job! Some babies fall asleep on their own. MOST need to be cuddled, fed, rocked and sung to sleep. Especially at 4 mo.

My 1yo still likes to be held till she's just about asleep. We hold her till her eyes droop and then transfer her to her crib... Some nights, she falls asleep on her Dad's chest while he's watching TV. They are so little for such a short time. Enjoy all the cuddles while they last.

Emma - posted on 05/15/2010




you are not doing anything wrong! all kids are different. my daughter is nearly 2 and she falls asleep with her bottle, its a comfort thing.

if you are concerned about it, you can always try controlled crying, if you get too distressed or your baby does, dont worry, pick her up and cuddle her. most kids will grow out of the phase.

im sure you are doing a fantastic job, dont stress, no kids are the same. :)

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms