Crib sleeping

Kimberly - posted on 01/06/2010 ( 8 moms have responded )

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I need advice on getting Billy (9mos) to start sleeping in his crib. I love co-sleeping but he is starting to toss and turn constantly and I get even less sleep than usual. He hates his crib! Keep in mind that he wakes up 2-3 times a night still for a bottle, diaper changing or to let out some steam (if you know what I mean). I spoke with his doctor and she told me to just put him in there and let him cry (for up to an hour), yeah crying that long is not an option for me! She also said that he shouldn't be waking in the middle of the night anymore. What am I doing wrong????? Ugggh, I need HELPPPP! Thanks :)

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Renae - posted on 01/08/2010

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Unfortunately, most doctors seem to be very uneducated when it comes to sleep training methods and are unaware that there are several options.



For the record, if you continue to feed your baby during the night, there is a very high chance that CIO will NOT work and will just make things worse. CIO is only appropriate as a sleep-through method. CIO is not a one-size-fits-all solution to all sleep problems (though most GP's dont seem to realise this). CIO also (in my opinion) should NEVER be done without cry interpretation when someone tells you how to listen for a distress cry so that you know if your baby needs you. It is not good for a baby to cry in distress and be ignored. I am an advocate of CIO, but only when it is necessary and only when it is done properly.



It is unusual for a 9mo to still need to feed 2-3 times at night. Most 9mo can go 10 hours without feeding. Some babies continue to need one night feed after about 7 hours until 12mo. Although, most babies can be taught not to feed at night and within 3 days start to drink more during the day to make up for it. If I had to guess on the limited info I have I would say that your baby is waking mostly out of habit but might be need to be fed once. You say your baby might wake for a diaper change, is he still pooing at night? Most babies stop pooing at night by 6mo.



I think that your best options for sleep training are probably one of the two below:

- Gradual Withdrawal - This is the no-cry method most commonly used by behaviourists and sleep consultants. This is where you gradually withdraw the baby from needing your help to go to sleep. This has an 80% success rate and takes 2-4 weeks for a baby who is used to the crib. A co-sleeper MAY take a week or so longer.

- Pick-up/Put-down - Another no-cry method. This was invented by UK's "baby whisperer" Tracey Hogg. She has a website with a support forum for people using the method. This method is not commonly recognised but is supposed to work quickly so might be worth a try. Tracey says it will work in 4 days, but many posts from parents say 1-2 weeks. Being that we are talking about a co-sleeper maybe add another week.



You could also read No Cry Sleep Solution by Elizabeth Pantley. She is an advocate of co-sleeping and so has some very gentle methods that will work but will take a lot of time and patience (a few weeks to a few months, she says all baby's are different). She says in her book that you have to choose between crying or time.



One last thing, you are doing nothing wrong. I answer lots of posts about sleep methods and have researched it thoroughly (lets not go into that now!) and can tell you that lots of babies are still waking up at 9mo. Most co-sleepers wake at night until 18mo and 50% of babies who sleep alone still wake at night until they are 12mo.



You are welcome to contact me for info or instructions on anything I have said (my posts get too long!).

Angela - posted on 01/08/2010

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Hi, my son is 22 months, still nursing and co-sleeping. BUT he sleeps in his crib, only because it's connected to our bed. I took off one of the sides of the crib and pushed it up to our bed. Now he can still nurse, or just come to me if doesn't feel good, but still has his own space and so do I. Before doing this he cried every time I tried to put him in the crib(even just to play). He also takes naps there. I lay wit him until he falls asleep then I leave. I know he's safe cause he's in the crib, except the side connected to our bed but when he wakes he calls for me and/or cries, he never roams around our bed. This works great for us.

Jessica - posted on 01/08/2010

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do you have a night time routine in place? like bath bottle bed?



I woulds try putitng the crib in your room first and see fi he will get used to it that way if he can see you sleeping from his crib that might be more comforting for him, that what i did with my son first, plus he is on a sleeping and feeding routine during the day and will now sleep from 7pm till 7am with no feeds through the night.



If your he is breast feeding then he might still want 1 feed a night but at 9 months because he would be on solids now too he definatly doesnt need those feeds through the night, it sounds to me like it may just be a habbit he has gotten himself into. Replacing milk with water or a very watered down bottle can work also.



I would look at putting him in a routine during the day if you havent already first and see how you go.



good luck

Tracy - posted on 01/07/2010

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I swear to you letting my baby cry was the best thing I ever did..she now sleeps thru the night 12 hours

Sheila - posted on 01/07/2010

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I loved the book "The Baby Whisperer" by Tracy Hogg. She suggests that you put your baby in the crib and stay there until they fall asleep. Every night stay there, but move a couple inches away every night. Or you can start at the door holding your baby until they fall asleep and every night inch a bit closer, stand there until they fall asleep and continue until you can put him in his crib.



Another solution is to sit in the bedroom on the floor next to the crib. Don't look at them or talk to them... but choose one soothing method (I rubbed my son's tummy and said sh sh sh) until he calms down.



When my son was a baby, I had to give him one of my worn shirts to sleep with cuz it smelled like mommy. When I got sick of giving him my shirt, I slept with a pillow case made of t shirt material, and gave it to him to use as a blanket. To go with it, for a younger baby, sometimes a one or two liter bottle filled with warm water wrapped in one of your shirts will give the impression of you being right there!



Good luck!

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Sheila - posted on 01/06/2010

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Hi Kimberly.
I have raised many children typical and not and I do not agree with your Dr. Unless you are at your wits end (if you know what I mean) and need to put him in there for that long then no one should have to cry for that long. If you have time HA! HA! I would start putting him in there not to sleep but to play with you read to him, hang up his clothes put lots of toys and just spend time in there without the sleep going on. Maybe then he will see it's not so bad. I have a big bed and all my children have slept with me once they start school they usually transtion out on their own, but most people don't like to wait that long. But one day you will look back and miss the time you had with him when he was young. They grow up much to fast! I'm not sure how old your son is and what else he eats at this point but you may need to start giving him a bit more food. Sounds like alot of times to be up for a bottle thur the night, he may be useing it just to go back to sleep and that he may not really need the milk intake. It maybe just a soothing thing for him. Good luck! new things and changes are always hard on everyone involved.

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Have you tried moving him to the crib AFTER he is asleep? And is the crib in your room? It might be easier for him to sleep alone if he is in the same room and can hear your breathing, etc. You could try letting him fall asleep with you and then move him just beside the bed. Slowly move the crib (or basinet or playpen) a bit further away as he gets comfortable. He might feel a bit more comfortable if you rolled up a blanket or soft towel and placed it beside him so he doesn't feel alone (I did that for my youngest).



I'm not a fan of letting a baby cry themselves to sleep. How good of a sleep could that possibly be?



And you are not doing anything wrong because you're baby is waking up. Some kids just don't sleep through the night at an early age. My oldest is 4 and he was sleeping through the night at 5 weeks old. My youngest is 2 and has slept through the night maybe 5 times (probably not what you wanted to hear :). All kids are different. You'll know what will work for your baby by what feels right to you.

Veronica - posted on 01/06/2010

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My son still wake up in the night he is three and comes to my bed every night. My girls dont. Your doctors advice is what I did with my kids But my son is not in a crib and he finds his way to my bed every night. I even got one of those nets to keep him from climbing out at nine months so when we potty trained him he start coming to our bed. I wish you much luck and start giving him water in the bottle at night. This way your babys teeth are not bathing in milk that can cause cavities.

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