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Most Common Reasons Babies Wake Up at Night

Posted on: November 10th, 2019 by Violet 144 Comments

baby waking up

Sleep Props

The use of props to help a baby fall asleep, is the number one reason a sleeping baby wakes up at night. Here are some common props or sleep associations:

  • Bottle or breastfeeding/nursing to sleep
  • Rocking to sleep
  • Swinging to sleep
  • Movement in a carseat or stroller
  • Even the *pacifier if your baby is dependent on it
  • Holding to sleep/sleeping on parent

If your baby relies on any of the above to fall asleep, and needs them when she wakes up at night, then it is considered a prop or sleep association. Your baby will most likely continue waking throughout the night and not be able to soothe back to sleep, without that particular prop. Also, if your baby wakes up crying or if your baby wakes up screaming, this is a good sign that your baby has become dependent on sleep props. To encourage good sleep habits, your baby should be laid down to sleep awake, without any props. This goes for bedtime and during the night. Laying your baby down without any props will help your baby learn to soothe herself, so that she is not so reliant on you to sleep well. This is obviously a lot easier said, than done. I specialize in this. Here’s how I can help –>.



My first baby, Brianna, used the sheets to self soothe. She would rub her face up against the sheets, side to side until she fell asleep. When she got older she would sway her hand across the sheets back and forth. The texture of the sheet helped her self soothe until she fell asleep. That would never cross my mind as soothing, but that’s exactly what she did. We even bought her these Velour sheets, which she absolutely loved. Of course, the sheets weren’t the reason she started sleeping through the night. I had to also incorporate some Gentle Sleep Training to eliminate all of the bad sleep habits I instilled, but I just wanted to give you an example of how simple self-soothing can be. There are many ways that a baby can find to self-settle, you just have to give her the opportunity to do so. If she is already reliant on sleep props, this may take some sleep training to resolve. And don’t worry, that doesn’t mean you have to leave your baby to cry it out. There are many gentler ways. 

By teaching your baby to fall asleep on her own, and getting rid of sleep props, you will solve most, if not all of your baby’s sleep troubles. I am not suggesting, by any means, to use any harsh methods of sleep training to achieve this. As a matter of fact, you want to do everything you can, to comfort your baby before bed. Kisses, hugs, and cuddling is the best part of our bedtime routine! Of course, you want to make your baby feels safe, secure, and loved before bedtime. Just don’t let the sleep props be the reason your baby falls asleep.

* A side note on the use of the pacifier. I encourage the use of a pacifier because it has been shown to reduce the risk of SIDS. However, if your baby keeps waking up and crying in the middle of the night because the pacifier fell out, and you need to keep putting it back in, then you might want to evaluate if you really want to use it. This is a personal choice, one you will have to make weighing your pros and cons. I thought Brianna was reliant on the pacifier, then I put her to the test. I took the binky away, and let her fall asleep without it for a few nights, and she didn’t cry for it. So I knew she wasn’t relying on it. She fell asleep with it, but didn’t care when it fell out. So I decided to keep it. I think I would have kept it either way, at least for the first few months. Tell a nurse something reduces SIDS, and she’s not going to think twice.

 

“Before I contacted Violet Anthony had never slept through the night, he was usually up twice a night. He was also dependent on nursing to fall asleep. I couldn’t believe it, the first night he slept 11 hours straight!! It’s been 2 1/2 weeks so far and every single night he’s slept for 10-11 hours! He also no longer falls asleep nursing! Now he nurses and pulls off when he wants to go to bed. He loves his crib which is a total change from before when he would cry every time I laid him down. Thank you so much!! Honestly, I thought there was no way my stubborn little guy would go into his crib awake and fall asleep. It’s amazing!! Thanks!! I can sleep again!!”~ Alison, California 
 

Circadian  Rhythm

It’s also known as our biological clock. It’s a 24-hour pattern of biological activities that occur in our body. The sleep-wake cycle is part of that circadian rhythm. As part of the sleep-wake cycle, our body releases certain hormones during night time to help us fall asleep. It also releases daytime hormones to help us wake up. Babies are born with an underdeveloped circadian rhythm. That’s why when you bring your baby home from the hospital, he or she sleeps during the day and is awake at night. Also, don’t forget throughout your pregnancy, your baby was rocked to sleep during the day by your movements. That’s why you felt her movements at night when she was awake. So what can you do to help your little night owl? Just keep your baby on a regular feeding cycle. Keep the blinds open, turn on the t.v or radio, and just go about your day as you normally would to help create an association with daytime. Then at night, obviously you do the exact opposite. Quiet all noise, turn down the lights, and establish your bedtime routine. Be patient, it can take some babies up to 8 weeks to know the difference between day and night. To complicate things even more, melatonin (the sleep hormone) is not produced until a baby is about 2-3 months old. So don’t get discouraged, it takes a while for a baby to settle into this world.

Startle Reflex

Also known as the Moro reflex, is a normal infantile reflex. When some stimulus causes your baby to startle, the legs flex and the arms stretch out. This stimulus can be a loud noise, an unexpected touch, or a bad dream. This reflex lasts only a few seconds but can wake a sleeping baby. Some babies can drift right back to sleep, while others will completely wake up. This reflex usually diminishes by 4 months of age. Until then, the Swaddle Sleep Sack is great. Those nifty velcro patches were intended to keep your baby’s arms inside and prevent awakening from the startle reflex. I watched Brianna, completely wake up from the startle reflex over and over. Her arms would fan out and within seconds, she was completely awake! That’s when I decided to put her in the Swaddle Sack. It helped so much and she slept so much better.

 
Temperature

At one point Brianna started waking more frequently for a few days in a row, right at the start of winter. I noticed her little hands and feet were cold. Now it’s pretty warm in our house. As a matter of fact, I slept in shorts and a tank top. Apparently it wasn’t warm enough for Brianna. I had to adjust the temperature for her. When I did, she was back to her normal sleep schedule. The same thing happened in the summer when it got really warm out. At this point, she was sleeping through the night, and she started waking up a for a few nights. That’s when I realized it was too warm for her. It was only April, I never turn on the air condition this early! I had to put a low fan setting on the A.C. and that kept her comfortable. Babies are picky about the right temperature. We naturally regulated their temperatures for them, while they were in utero. Out here, it’s a bit more difficult to get that temperature just right. 


Hunger

Ok, this may sound self-explanatory, but it’s not. You may think your baby is hungry, but she may not be. Here are some clues that your baby is waking up at night because she is truly hungry:

1. She wakes up whining at first, then transitions into a louder and louder cry. If your baby wakes up hysterical, she’s probably waking up because she’s scared or confused, not because she’s immediately hungry. Babies will wake up screaming if they fell asleep in your arms, and didn’t go to sleep on their own. They wake up alarmed, wondering where they are, and where you disappeared. Sort of like you would if you fell asleep in your warm bed, but woke up in your backyard. That’s how alarming it is for a baby, and that’s why your baby wakes up screaming.

2. Your baby is waking up consistent with her daytime feeding schedule. Meaning if she’s eating every 3 hours during the day, she will probably do the same at night. Especially if she is young. A young baby may only be able to make it 3-4hrs at night. If your baby is older, her consistent wakings may be purely out of habit, refer to the habit section below.

3. She only wakes for one feeding. If your baby is only waking for one feeding and goes right back to sleep, she is most likely hungry and still needs that feeding. If your baby is waking up multiple times a night, chances are she is just comfort feeding. (Unless she is really young of course)

4. When your baby is eating, you hear loud, audible swallows. What I mean is, she is not just playing around, suckling a little here, a little there. She is truly drinking and actively eating. Some babies wake up from a sleep cycle, and just want to be soothed back to sleep, and the bottle or breast is obviously going to do the trick. Brianna was infamous for this. She would wake up, suckle a little, and fall right asleep on me. I would slip her into bed and a half-hour to 1 hour later, she did it again. She wasn’t hungry, she was using me as a soother! And this went on for months. It wasn’t until she was 8 months old when I learned about sleep props, and that she was actually only comfort nursing.

5. Your baby stays awake during the entire feeding, and usually drinks a large bottle or feeds from both breasts. A baby wouldn’t be able to eat that much if she was not hungry. It is possible that your baby is eating a large amount out of habit, or simply because it’s offered and she knows it’s an easy way to fall back asleep. If your baby is comfort feeding while her stomach is full, she will eat a little bit and fall asleep on the bottle or breast. So it can be very tricky. You have to really be in-tune with your baby’s hunger cues. I can also help with this, more on that below.

6. Here’s the biggie, your baby falls asleep after you place her back in the crib awake! Now only a very content baby could do that. If you fulfilled her need for calories because she was hungry, and she falls asleep knowing that she is back in her crib, then she was most likely hungry. Otherwise, she would put up a fight and stay awake.

 

 

 

Out of Habit

Many babies wake several times a night, and even just once or twice a night, simply out of habit. If they get a feeding or sleep prop at the exact same time each night, their body’s internal clock gets set to wake at that time each night. This is often the most complicated reason for a waking, because parent’s get confused about what’s going on. They start to wonder is my baby really hungry? Is my baby relying on me for comfort? Or is my baby just simply waking out of habit? And how do I stop the wakings? This can be difficult to resolve on your own. I help parents with this dilemma on a daily basis and would be glad to help. If you are having a hard time getting your baby to sleep, because your confused about what’s going on and how to fix it, please consider one of my Baby Sleep Consultation Packages. I will take an in-depth look into your baby’s sleep situation, create a customized sleep plan, and help you through the entire process of helping your baby sleep well.


Growth Spurt

We all heard about this right? Your baby grows at a rapid rate and needs to eat more. Common growth spurts are 7-10 days, 3 weeks, 6 weeks, 3 months, 6 months, and 9 months. Give or take a little, they are not exact. Brianna must of hit every single one of these. She was on a great sleep schedule, then all of the sudden started waking frequently. I knew it was only a growth spurt because it only lasted 3-4 days. After a while, I loved growth spurts. Because at the end of each growth spurt, she would get right back on her sleep schedule, and even slept a little bit longer. My recommendation, just feed on demand during a growth spurt. If you are breastfeeding, don’t worry about your supply being low. Your supply will actually increase to meet the demand of your baby. I always thought it was cool how that works. Don’t forget to drink extra fluids. You are going to be thirsty from all the feedings. And if you are bottle feeding, your partner can help with the extra feedings. Growth spurts can be exhausting but thankfully they don’t last long.

New Developmental Skill

Your baby learned how to kick, roll, sit or stand and now they want to do it all night. Sound familiar? You can’t stop a baby from exploring her new skills. For younger babies, the Swaddle Sack is great. You can use it up until your baby starts to roll. It keeps their little arms and legs inside. At first, I wasn’t very fond of using the Swaddle Sack. I felt like I was restraining my baby. After a few uses, I realized it was really helping her. By using a good swaddle, you are keeping your baby snug, and preventing her from even getting the idea of kicking or swinging her arms. Initially, I was swaddling Brianna in a regular receiving blanket. It didn’t take long for her to slip out of there. As soon as an arm or leg broke loose, she fully woke up to further experiment. With the Swaddle Sleep Sack, that never even crossed her mind because her arms and legs never came out of it. She slept so soundly in it. As you can tell, I really love swaddle sacks! And don’t forget lots of playtime on the mat during the day. This helps your baby practice her new skills, so she’s less likely to practice at bedtime and during the night.

 

Teething

For some babies, teething can feel like an itch, and for others, it can be very painful. But either way, it’s annoying and can keep a baby up all night. 6 months is the average time a baby cuts her first tooth, but it can happen way earlier, or later. Bottom line, you will have to find some way to ease the pain. Talk to your doctor about some options. There’s no reason to hold off on helping your baby sleep well because of teething.

Light

Is there any light coming in the room? Perhaps it’s a full moon, or your neighbor just bought a new garage light. Lights can really bother a sleeping baby because they disrupt the sleep-wake cycle. Illumination suppresses Melatonin, the hormone that helps your baby sleep. If you suspect light to be waking your baby, I recommend room darkening or blackout shades like these Blackout EZ blinds. Before we put Brianna in her own room, she slept 2 hours later in our bedroom which had the room darkening shades. I learned that she’s one of those babies that wake as soon as there’s any tiny bit of light coming through. Blackout shades are great, they keep the bright sunlight out, and most of them block out 95-99% of light.

Some babies are just more sensitive than others. Studies show that even a small amount of light can prevent us from going to sleep and staying asleep. You may have to get rid of the cute nightlight you registered for or cover up the light on the smoke detector. I actually had to cover the green light coming from the baby monitor camera. I just stuck a piece of black tape on the light. I caught Brianna staring at it the first few nights we installed it, it was preventing her from falling asleep. It was such a tiny pin size light, but it still bothered her. Some babies won’t even give any clues that a light is bothering them. Instead they will just have trouble falling asleep and staying asleep. The Blackout EZ blinds are by far the best blackout blinds on the market. Trust me, I have tried at least 10 different brands! These block out 100% of light, no sneaking in of light on the sides like other curtains, blinds, or panels. You don’t need hardware to install them, and can still use them with your cute nursery drapery. Not to mention they work much better and are cheaper than the typical blackout blinds or panels. And they come in different colors too. They are amazing! You can find them here—>

 

 Illness

It should be no surprise that a baby that is sick, is now waking in the middle of the night. Whether it’s a cold, stomach bug, or just a fever, your baby will have a hard time sleeping due to the
discomfort. Stuffy noses cause mouth breathing, and mouth breathing causes dry mouth, which in turn makes your baby wake more frequently. Fevers are also very uncomfortable, even for us adults, so think about what it does to our babies who can’t communicate their needs very well. During this time, try your best to soothe your baby, but you may just have to deal with a few rough nights.

So there you have it, the most common reasons a baby wakes up at night!


I am available for personal help!

 

Sometimes figuring out why your baby is waking up so often and
finding a solution to stop the wakings, requires some help. For that reason, I offer personal consultations. The consultation comes with a step by step sleep plan that I create for your baby, and help with the entire process so that your baby can start sleeping through the night. If you need help getting your baby to sleep, please take a look at my Consultation Packages, or see what others are saying about how I have helped them on the Testimonials Page.

 

 

“I saw unbelievable improvement in my baby’s sleep within 3 days of starting the plan. This is amazing to because my baby never slept a full night for the 7 months she’s been alive! She was very dependent on me, nursing, and a pacifier to fall asleep. I cannot thank Violet enough and highly recommend her plans/services to anyone struggling with infant sleep.

~Amber, Florida

 

Violet is truly amazing. 2 weeks- and our baby (8 months old) is sleeping straight thru at night between 8-10 hours and doubled his nap lengths (45min naps to 1.5+), as well as learned to self soothe and put self to sleep. (huge!!!) my husband and I can not thank her enough… we FINALLY feel like we can become “normal” again. Words do not describe our gratitude.

~ Jen, Wisconsin

 

Thank goodness for this wonderful lady!! I highly recommend her services if your baby is having trouble getting to sleep/sleeping through/waking early. I have gone from having to feed/walk/drive/bounce/rock my 9 month old to sleep, to her falling asleep in minutes on her own in her cot with no effort at all. Also gone from waking 2-3 times a night to sleeping 12 hours without waking!!!!! I am a new woman xx

~ Rachel, Bristol United Kingdom

 

Baby Sleep Associations

Posted on: October 2nd, 2019 by Violet No Comments

baby sleep associationsBaby Sleep Associations

The newborn days are a blur for many new moms and dads; feedings, changing diapers and sleeping (or lack of sleeping) are your new life. You might have done anything in the early days to get your little one to sleep; I know I did.

 

The techniques you started using to get your baby to sleep when you first came home from the hospital are now habits or sleep associations. Your baby needs them to fall asleep. Not all sleep associations are bad but you’ll want to get rid of the ones that involve you helping out.

 

If you’re at your wits end with helping your little one get to sleep, there’s good news and bad news. The good news is you can definitely get rid of these habits; the bad news is it might take a little work.

Common Baby Sleep Associations

First of all, don’t beat yourself up if you’re feeling bad about using sleep props. Research shows 60% of parents rock their infants to sleep and 75% of infants fall asleep every night feeding. Needless to say, you’re not alone.

 

Here’s a look at some of the more common sleep props to help baby get to sleep.

Rocking

Bouncing

Nursing/Drinking bottle

Co-sleeping

Pacifier that you have to pop back in

 

These sleep associations are helpful in the first few months of your baby’s life, but by 4 to 6 months, you can start getting rid of them. At this age, your little one’s sleep is starting to become more regular and they are capable of getting themselves back to sleep.

Introducing New Independent Sleep Associations

The best way to break the old sleep associations is to introduce new independent sleep associations. These are props that help your little one get to sleep without you having to help. Here are some good independent sleep associations you can introduce.

White noise

Lovey (blanket, stuffed animal)

Pacifier (if they’re old enough to put it back in)

Bedtime routine

 

White noise: White noise plays a couple of roles in helping your little one sleep. The most important benefit is that it triggers your baby’s calming reflex, but it also helps muffle other noises around the house that might wake your baby as he gets older.

Just make sure not to turn the white noise too loud because it can harm your baby’s hearing. My go-to white noise is a box fan. It provides a nice, even sound and is great at blocking outside noise.

 

Lovey: If your little one doesn’t already have a lovey, now is a great time to introduce one. This could be a small blanket or a small stuffed animal that your baby associates with sleep and comfort.

I usually start introducing the lovey during feeding sessions so my little one gets used to it. It’s important to make sure the lovey is removed when you lay your baby down to sleep for safety reasons.

 

Pacifier: A pacifier is only a helpful independent sleep aid if your baby can put it back in himself. If you have to put the pacifier back in every time your little one wakes up, you’re back to square one.

Pacifiers are also tricky because they can get knocked out of the crib. I found a great fix to this problem by tying a short ribbon onto four, yes four, pacifiers and then sewing the ribbon onto each corner of a small burp rag. This makes them much more difficult to knock out of the crib.

 

Bedtime Routine: A bedtime routine is also a great independent sleep association that tells your little one it’s time to go to sleep. Figure out a bedtime routine that works for you and your baby and repeat it every night. This might include a bath, feeding, reading a book and then putting your little one down.

It’s also important to put your baby down when he’s drowsy but not quite asleep. He might not love this at first, but eventually, he’ll learn he can get to sleep on his own. Once he gets to sleep on his own when you first put him down, he’ll be able to put himself back to sleep on his own when he wakes up in the night as well.

 

Come Up With a Plan

If you want to be successful in breaking the old sleep associations, it’s important to keep a couple of things in mind.

First, talk to your partner about the best plan for both of you. If you’re not on the same page, you’ll stress each other out which will not help things go smoothly.

It’s also important to remember all babies are different. What works for your first baby might not work for your second. For my kids, a cold turkey approach worked best for my first. I dropped the sleep association and after a little crying, she was good to go. My second, though, needed some reassurance, so I would go in at specific intervals. Figure out what works best for your baby and don’t be afraid to change your plan if it’s not working.

If you’re still having trouble dropping these sleep associations, you’ve come to the right place. I offer an
individual email consultation to come up with the best plan for you and your little one. You can check out the different sleep packages I offer.

Let’s get you and your baby sleeping soon!

 

 

Baby Sleep Travel Tips

Posted on: July 15th, 2019 by Violet No Comments

baby sleep travel tips

 

A vacation should be fun, exciting, an adventure! Unfortunately, that’s not always the case; especially anytime you travel with a baby. Not only do you have to plan everything extra you need to pack for baby, you also have to figure out how in the world you’re going to get your little one to sleep while you travel. I’ve been there and that challenge can turn any vacation into a stressful, tiring time instead of a fun adventure together. Because I’ve been there, I have a few baby sleep travel tips that will help make your next trip much more relaxing and enjoyable.

 

Establish a Routine

Establish a routine in your little one’s life as soon as possible. Kids in general, and babies especially, thrive on routine. If you haven’t started one yet, it’s not too late. Every baby’s routine looks different. You might read a specific book and sing a special song before putting your baby down. Close the curtains, turn on some white noise and give your little one a special blanky or stuffed animal. I always recommend a box fan for white noise. Of course, this isn’t very realistic to travel with if you have to fly, so just do your best. Follow this routine every time you put your baby down. 

 

Help Prep Baby Before Traveling

Obviously, when you’re traveling your little one isn’t going to be able to sleep in his room or his own crib. If your baby has never slept in a pack and play, nap him in one a few times leading up to the trip. I wouldn’t do this immediately before the trip because your best bet is to start your trip with a well-rested baby. A week or two before, though, set the pack and play up in your little one’s room for a nap. You might even set it up in a different room so he gets used to a change of scenery.

 

Set the Right Environment

Now that you’re on the road, get ready to recreate that sleeping environment and routine wherever you’re staying. Bring the pack and play, bring the white noise, bring the special book and bring the lovey. When it’s time to put your little one down, do everything just as you would at home. Read the book, sing the song and put him down.  

Finding your little one his own space is always ideal, but not always possible. I’ve been known to use laundry rooms, walk in closets or extra bathrooms for my baby’s sleeping quarters when visiting family. I also always travel with a dark sheet and tacks. If your baby doesn’t have his own room, you can at least create his own space. I tack up the sheet around the pack and play so the rest of the family is out of view. He might cry a little, but just keep at it. In no time, he’ll be snoozing away and you can enjoy your vacation and even sip on that much needed margarita!

 

Bring Blackout Shades

Fun in the sun is not so fun if your baby is waking super early or having trouble falling asleep for the night.
Be sure to bring some travel shades with you. If this is not possible a great hack is to bring a roll of aluminum foil. Simply wet the window, and roll the foil out over it. Not only will you get the room dark, you will also keep the heat out.

 

Keep Realistic Expectations

It’s important that you keep your expectations realistic. Vacation with a baby won’t be the same as vacation without, but it can still be enjoyable. If you’re flying half the day with a plane change in the middle, you can’t realistically expect your little one to take his two hour nap right on the dot as usual. Be happy with a 45-minute cat nap halfway through the flight. 

A 6-hour car ride with a baby who takes long naps in the car is rather peaceful; a 6-hour car ride with a baby who doesn’t sleep in the car is a whole other story. Don’t let a rough start to your trip ruin the rest. On travel days, throw the routine out the window and plan to readjust as soon as you’re settled.

It’s also helpful to remember these baby sleep travel tips won’t just help on a vacation, but any time you travel with baby away from home. A play date with an older sibling is still doable and even enjoyable when you can find an empty room to put baby down. A trip to grandma and grandpa’s to show off the newest addition can be done while keeping your little one on some sort of routine. No missed sleep equals a happy baby and a happy mama.  

Your first trip may not go as smoothly as you had hoped, but keep at it. The more you travel, the better your baby will get at traveling and snoozing while traveling. 

Need Help?

 

baby sleep travel tips

 

 

 

How To Get Your Baby To Sleep Through the Night [Complete Guide]

Posted on: June 12th, 2019 by Violet No Comments

how to get your baby to sleep through the night

Wondering how to get your baby to sleep through the night?

“So… how much sleep are you getting?”

If you’re a new parent, you get this question all the time. The first few months of parenting can be rough — and everyone knows it.

And it’s even harder if your little one is having a hard time settling down at night. You can’t wait for the day when you’ll finally get a full night of sleep again. Even six hours would be amazing.

This is my complete guide to getting your baby to sleep through the night. I use these proven techniques with my clients to help the whole family get a great night’s sleep. If you don’t get these basics right, you could be in for a lot of sleepless nights.

Let’s get started.

 

1. Create a calming sleep environment

To help your baby get a great night’s sleep, creating a peaceful environment can make all the difference.

Be sure to keep the room as dark as possible. Darkness triggers the release of melatonin, a natural hormone that promotes sleep. Bright light causes the release of cortisol, signaling the body that it’s time to be awake and alert.

Blackout blinds are a great way to maintain a dark environment that’ll help your baby fall asleep. Choose lighting options that won’t disturb your baby’s sleep, like this cute moon nightlight.

If your baby often wakes up after you put her down, consider a white noise machine. They’re a great way to block out environmental noises like barking dogs. And studies have shown that most babies fall asleep faster in rooms with white noise.

 

2. Set up a regular sleep schedule

One of the most important things you can do to ensure a great night’s sleep is to get your child on a regular sleep schedule.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends establishing a consistent sleep schedule for your baby. Get in the habit of getting up and going to bed at the same time every day. Each night, your little peanut will know when sleep is coming, and he’ll quickly adapt to the new routine.

Your baby’s sleep needs will change throughout the first year. You’ll find that you can put him down earlier and he’ll sleep for longer stretches as time goes on. Be flexible, and adapt with your little one as his needs change.

 

3. Establish a regular bedtime ritual

how to get your baby to sleep through the night

 

Creating a consistent bedtime ritual will help your baby get ready for sleep. Choose soothing activities that will help your baby get settled. For instance, you might give your little one a warm bath, read a story, or play some quiet music. Minimize stimulation.

Make your routine simple and easy to do, so you’ll be able to stay with it night after night. Using an app like the Bedtime app from Johnson’s can help you create a routine that sticks.

Once you’ve got your routine up and running, your bedtime ritual will create positive sleep associations… making it much easier for your little one to get settled.

 

 

 

 

 

4. Get the timing right

Now that you’ve got a regular sleep schedule set up and your evening ritual is on lock, it’s time for the most crucial part. Look for the signs that your baby is almost ready to fall asleep, but not quite there yet.

In short, you’re looking for the moment when your baby is drowsy but awake. That’s the right moment to put her down, so she can fall asleep on her own.

Drowsy but awake is a guideline, not an iron-clad rule. It means that when you put your baby down, she should be calm, comfortable, and ready to fall asleep on her own.

Odds are, sometimes when you put your little nugget down, she’ll start crying when you leave the nursery. Stay strong. A good rule of thumb is to allow ten minutes for your baby to settle herself down. You’re naturally primed to respond when your baby starts crying. But when you let her settle on her own, you’ll teach her a crucial life lesson: how to take care of herself.

 

 

5. Put your baby down earlier

If late-night wakings have been a struggle, you might be thinking you need to set a later bedtime. Get him really tired out and he’ll sleep all night, right?

Actually, it’s the other way around. By around the fourth month, most babies are ready for sleep as early as 7 pm… although your baby’s sleep needs will change throughout the first year. Wait too long, and you’ll have a cranky, fussy baby on your hands who can’t get settled.

Worried your kid will be up at the crack of dawn? Don’t stress. Most of the time, babies who go to bed at the right time sleep through the night and wake up refreshed.

Finding the right time may take a little experimentation. If your current bedtime is later in the evening, try setting it back 15 minutes. Keep setting it back every couple of days, always keeping an eye on how easily your baby falls asleep. Before long, you’ll be hitting that drowsy-but-awake sweet spot by early evening.

 

6. Never skip the afternoon naps

Regular afternoon naps are as important as early bedtimes. Especially during the first year, afternoon naps are essential for helping your baby recharge and refresh… so when bedtime rolls around, he’ll be easy to handle.

Setting up a consistent routine is the key to success. Look for signs of sleepiness, and always try to put him down drowsy but awake. Try simpler, shorter versions of your evening bedtime ritual to get naptime off to a smooth start.

Plan play dates and other activities around naptime to keep your routine on track. And don’t worry when life gets in the way. You’re driving back from running errands and get stuck in traffic for an hour on the freeway? No worries. Having a solid naptime routine in place will make it easy for you to get back on track tomorrow.

how to get your baby to sleep through the night

 

7. Avoid sleep props

We all have a nighttime routine to help us get to sleep. Whatever yours is, it helps you settle in for a great night of sleep.

And your baby is no different. If she’s a newborn, she may want you to hold her or rock her to sleep. But as she gets older, she’ll form other sleep associations. White noise, sucking on her fingers, a quiet lullaby… the possibilities are endless.

Some sleep associations are fine. If your baby is getting to sleep on her own — for example, by sucking on her fingers — it’s all good.

But some sleep associations aren’t healthy, because they depend on you. If your baby needs you to bounce her or sing to her to get to sleep, she can’t settle down without your help. And that means she still needs to learn a crucial skill: how to self-soothe.

If your baby is still depending on you, focus on the basics. Create a dark, calming nursery environment that will help her sleep. Set up a regular bedtime routine. And put your little one down drowsy but awake. It may not be easy — but you can teach her to sleep on her own.

 

8. Try dream feeding to reduce nighttime wakings

We all know what it’s like to wake up hangry. Jump out of bed, run to the kitchen, and scarf down the first thing you see. A whole box of Pop-Tarts. Cold pizza. A can of tuna. It doesn’t matter. Because you can’t sleep on an empty stomach.

And an empty tummy is one of the most common reasons why young babies wake up in the middle of the night, too. But there’s an easy way to eliminate nighttime hunger: dream feeding.

Dream feeding is a way to give your baby more calories late at night, so he can get a solid night’s sleep. Whenever you’re ready to turn in for the night, typically around 11 pm, get your baby out of the crib. But don’t fully wake him. Start nursing your baby, and he should start feeding even if he isn’t completely awake.

Is your baby waking up hungry, very early in the morning? Try an early-morning dream feed. Pay attention to the time when he usually starts crying, and start setting an alarm about a half-hour earlier. If he usually wakes up around 4 am, set an alarm for 3:30. If your baby still needs night feedings, by doing this, you’ll help him get comfortably through the night… without rewarding him for crying behavior. But be careful that you aren’t comfort feeding, this can actually contribute to sleep troubles and night wakings.

 

9. Skip the midnight diaper changes

You’ve heard it over and over again: “change the diaper after every feeding.” But what do you do when it’s 2 a.m. and you discover that your little peanut needs a diaper change?

If she’s just wet her diaper, it’s fine to let her sleep. Your baby’s diaper will wick away moisture so that she can continue sleeping. A midnight diaper change will only disrupt her sleep routine. Unless your baby’s diaper is completely soaked, she’s pooped, or she’s suffering from diaper rash, you’re better off letting her sleep.

And if you do need to do a midnight diaper change, get in and out like a ninja. Keep the room dark, move gently and purposefully, and try not to engage your little one.

how to get your baby to sleep through the night

 

10. Keep your expectations realistic

Be real with yourself. No matter what you do, your baby probably isn’t going to be sleeping twelve hours a night at two months. Know what typical baby sleep schedules look like so you’ll know what “sleeping through the night” looks like at every age.

And be flexible. The first year, you’ll experience a lot of ups and downs. Just when you think your baby has the sleeping-through-the-night thing down, the dreaded sleep regression kicks in. And you’re back to late nights in the nursery.

Highs and lows will happen throughout the first year. But if you’re ready to adapt as your baby’s needs change, it’ll go a lot more smoothly than you expect.

 

Your turn

The first year is a challenge — and if your little one isn’t sleeping, it’s even harder for everyone. But with these ten strategies, you can get your little peanut sleeping soundly through the night. And you can get the great night’s sleep you deserve, too.

Be sure to create a calming environment, set up a consistent bedtime ritual, and always put your little one down drowsy but awake.

how to get your baby to sleep through the nightAnd if you need more guidance, I’m here for you. I’ve helped thousands of families get the great night’s
sleep they need, and I can help yours, too. Check out my sleep packages to learn more!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Baby Won’t Sleep

Posted on: May 13th, 2019 by Violet No Comments

My Baby Won’t Sleep

Here’s What to Try When You’ve Tried Everything

 

You’re doing all the right things. You’ve created a consistent bedtime routine to help your baby get settled. You always try to wait for the right time to put him down.

But no matter what you try, your baby won’t sleep.

What do you try when you’ve tried everything?

Don’t give up. Sooner or later, all babies will learn to sleep on their own. If you’re still not getting that great night’s sleep you want, there are still plenty of things you can try.

Here are my top suggestions for parents who have already tried everything. Let’s get to it.

 

Your baby hasn’t learned that nighttime is for sleeping

Simply being born is a pretty big change for your little one. After spending nine months in a dark, warm womb, your baby is suddenly brought into a world of bright lights and pretty colors. Sometimes everything is abuzz with activity, and sometimes it all goes quiet.

One common reason that babies have sleep issues is that they haven’t worked out that nighttime is for sleep.

If your baby hasn’t established a regular daytime-nighttime pattern yet, start by setting regular times for my baby won't sleepwaking up each morning and going to bed each night. A predictable, consistent schedule will help your baby get accustomed to sleeping during the nighttime hours.

Spend more time outside in the mornings to get your baby exposed to natural light and orient her circadian
rhythms. Consider a daily morning walk. When that’s not an option, keep lots of lights on inside the house to help your child form the right associations.

Keep the lights low in the evening. Try not to expose your child to bright, artificial light. Bright light suppresses melatonin, a hormone that regulates your baby’s sleep and wake cycles. By keeping the lights low, you’ll make it easier for her to unwind.

Finally, consider blackout blinds. Blackout blinds shut out all light, helping your child get used to sleeping in a dark environment. They’re especially useful for midday naps and in the summer months, when it may stay light out until very late in the evening.

 

Your baby isn’t ready for sleep

“Drowsy but awake.” If you’ve done your homework on infant sleep, you’ve heard this mantra again and again.

Putting your child down in a relaxed state so he can fall asleep on his own is a key part of effective sleep training.

But it’s easier said than done.

One incredibly common mistake is putting your child too early, just because you’ve decided it’s bedtime. We’ve all been there. It’s the end of the day. You’re exhausted. And the clock hits 7:30. FINALLY, bedtime, amirite?

Just one little thing: your child is still wide awake.

Putting him down on your schedule sets you up for a long night. He may simply not be ready to fall asleep yet. And if you’re doing this on the regular, research shows you may actually make your child resistant to being put down in the crib.

It’s also common to wait too long. You want a good night’s sleep, so you wait, just to be sure your little peanut is tired out before you put him down. Bedtime comes and you even spot a yawn, but you give him a little longer.

“Ten more minutes” turns into another half hour. And by the time you put him down, he’s so overtired that he can’t relax. He’s fussy and irritable. And it’s gonna be a long time before either of you goes to sleep.

“Drowsy but awake” is a delicate balance. You can’t force bedtime before your child is ready. And you can’t wait too long.

Aim for a happy medium. When you start to see signs like rubbing eyes or yawning, jump into action. Clean diaper. Lullaby. Crib.

And then your reward: a glass of wine and Game of Thrones.

 

Your baby is going through sleep regression

Your baby has been sleeping four, five, even six hours at a time. And then, suddenly, everything falls apart.

Maybe he just won’t settle down at night. Maybe he’s up and crying over and over through the night.

You’re going through a sleep regression. And they’re way more common than you might think.

Sleep regressions happen when babies with established sleep patterns suddenly start to have difficulty sleeping. Infants usually have them at around four, eight, and twelve months. But really, they can happen at any time… it all depends on your baby’s growth.

Sleep regressions are normally caused by your baby’s natural development. Your baby is growing incredibly fast. Exploring the world around him is fascinating. And sleep takes a back seat.

If there doesn’t seem to be any obvious cause for your baby’s sleep challenges, you might be dealing with a sleep regression. Just remember, it’s totally normal. There’s nothing wrong with your baby — or you as a parent.

Sleep regressions generally work themselves out in time. The best way to handle them is to stay consistent. Keep your normal sleep schedule and bedtime routine, and before long your child should return to baseline.

 

You’re being more responsive than you need to

The other day a few friends and I had a girls’ night out. One of my friends, Aimee, brought along her son Finn, just six weeks old. As we sat chatting and drinking wine, he sat in his carrier by Aimee’s feet, snoozing peacefully.

And then… he stretched and started quietly fussing.

Everyone exchanged nervous glances. “Uh oh!” “Look out!” “He’s gonna blow!”

But Aimee wasn’t rattled at all. She completely ignored Finn and went right on with the conversation. And after a minute or so, Finn settled down and went right back to sleep.

It happens all the time. Babies wake up every now and then during sleep. They’ll cry or fuss for a minute or two, stretch, yawn, rub their eyes. It’s totally normal.

How do you react?

If you’re like me, your first instinct as a parent is to jump out of bed, run to the nursery and comfort your baby.

But pediatric studies have confirmed that by three months, most babies can settle themselves back to sleep on their own. Even at this incredibly young age, what your baby needs more than your comfort is the space and independence to solve problems for himself.

Every situation is different. If you’re hearing full-blown wailing coming from the nursery, it’s time to get in there.

But if you’re running to the nursery at the slightest disturbance, you’ll teach your baby that crying leads to attention — making it much more likely that nighttime crying will happen again in the future. It might be time to take a step back.

It’s hard. But stay strong. Give your child space. You can do it.

 

All babies can learn to sleep

These are some of the most common reasons why I see babies struggling to sleep in my one-on-one work with parents.

And if you’re dealing with one of these challenges, these strategies can help you get the great night’s sleep you need.

my baby won't sleepLooking for more guidance?

I’ve helped thousands of families just like yours get a great night’s sleep. And I can help yours, too. Check out my sleep packages to learn more!

 

 

How to Stop Co-Sleeping

Posted on: April 18th, 2019 by Violet No Comments

how to stop co-sleeping

 

How to Take Your Bed Back and Leave Co-Sleeping Behind

 

I don’t know about you. But I’ve never been a fan of roller coasters.

Sure, they look like fun. From a distance. But once you get rolling, it’s a whole different story.

And parenting can be the same way.

When your little one joined your family, you had visions of laying your little one peacefully down in the crib each night, after he’d fallen asleep quietly in your arms.

And then, your dreams crashed into reality. You never imagined it would be like this.

Maybe you started cosleeping because your little one just won’t settle on his own. Maybe he was waking constantly at night, and bringing him into your bed seemed easier.

“It’s only temporary,” you tell friends. “We’re just doing it until he learns to sleep by himself.”

Don’t worry. There’s hope. With the right approach, you can take your bed back… and get your little one sleeping on his own. The key is to have a plan — and stay consistent.

More restful nights are right around the corner. Ready? Let’s do this.

 

Why co-sleeping isn’t good for your child… or you

 

With so many parents jumping on the co-sleeping train, it’s easy to think it must be good for your baby. You’ll hear some people say that it helps them get a better night’s sleep. Others say it promotes a closer attachment with their child.

But look at the scientific evidence, and you get a different picture.

Bed-sharing is strongly linked to the increased risk of infant death, typically by suffocation. Recently, a study in the American Journal of Public Health examined over 3,000 cases of sudden unexpected infant deaths. In 70% of cases, infants were sleeping on a sleeping surface not recommended for infants, and in 64% of cases, they were sharing a sleeping surface with someone else.

Sleeping on the back is the only safe sleeping position. Infants should not share a sleeping surface with other sleepers, particularly when sleeping on a couch, chair, or recliner. For more information, check out the full set of guidelines on safe sleeping practices for infants issued by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

In addition, a recent study in Norway found that children who cosleep in the first few months tend to develop poor sleep habits as toddlers. This survey of over 55,000 parents reached several important findings:

  • Babies who slept in bed-sharing arrangements at six months tended to have shorter sleep and more frequent nighttime awakenings at eighteen months.
  • Babies who were poor sleepers at six months were more likely to have problems at eighteen months.

Most importantly, think about yourself. It simply isn’t healthy to put your child at the center of every aspect of your life. Sometimes your child needs to fit into your life, rather than being the focus.

Here’s the good news. Remembering the fundamentals of infant sleep can make the transition a lot easier. Let’s look at how.

 

Building a new sleep routine

 

I’ve talked on this blog before about how unhealthy sleep associations can make bedtime a lot more stressful. When your child needs to be rocked or nursed to fall asleep, he won’t be able to get to sleep without your help.

Co-sleeping is the ultimate unhealthy sleep association. To fall asleep, your child needs to be physically in your bed, next to you. Otherwise, sleep isn’t happening — for either of you. You can imagine the problems this can cause.

The solution? Build new, healthier bedtime routines. Teach your child that he can get to sleep without you at his side.

Naturally, the younger your child is, the easier it’ll be to break the habit. If he’s below a year or so, setting new routines will be a lot easier. (In a minute, we’ll talk about how to handle an older co-sleeper.)

The key to success is having a plan. If you decide on the spur of the moment one night to just start putting your little angel down in his crib, you’re setting yourself up for disaster.

Instead, plan out a new, specific bedtime routine. Think about how the hour or so before bedtime will go, and choose activities that will help your child wind down and get ready to sleep. Take a bath. Read a story together. Listen to some quiet music. Check out my tips for creating an evening routine that helps your baby relax.

Before you make the transition, spend some time reading and playing in your child’s room to make it a place he wants to be. Choose fun blankets and bedsheets linked to your child’s interests. Have your child’s favorite stuffed animals waiting for him in the crib.

how to stop co-sleepingAnd let’s be real. This is a big transition for your little one. Expect tears. Be consistent, and don’t go running to comfort your child if he cries when you lay him down to sleep.

Before long, bedtime will be easier. For everyone.

 

 

 

Got an older co-sleeper? Focus on easing the transition

 

If your child is over eighteen months, you’ve got a bigger challenge on your hands. Co-sleeping is a more deeply ingrained habit by now, and it’ll take more time and effort to break it.

But you can do it. The key to success is easing the transition.

Break the transition into baby steps. Take one small step at a time. And every step of the way, focus on showing confidence that your little one can handle sleeping on her own — just like a grown-up.

Start with a conversation. Explain that your child is a big girl and ready to sleep on her own now. Tell her that you and Daddy (or you and Mommy, or you) love her… but you need some time on your own, too. Show her how excited you are that she’s about to start sleeping all by herself in her own bed!

Reexamine your bedtime routine. If you don’t have a solid bedtime routine yet, now is the time to start. The goal is to get your little one in the habit of winding down each evening on her own, without needing to be by your side. Check out the guidelines in the section above, and plan out a routine that helps her do that.

Take it step by step. Eventually, you’ll be ready to help your child make the move to her bed. Take it slow. Start off by having her just take naps in her own bed. Before long, you can start doing her nighttime routine in her bedroom too.

Soon she’ll be ready to make the transition to her own bed. If she needs support with the transition, you may want to consider sleeping in her room for a couple of nights (in a sleeping bag or on an air mattress) to help her get comfortable.

how to stop co-sleepingBe ready for pushback. When your child finally moves to his own bed, be ready. There’s a good chance she’ll come running into your room, tears in her eyes, wanting to get back into your bed.

Keep in mind, many parents fail to break the co-sleeping habit because they relent at this point. If you allow your child into your bed “just this once,” you’re teaching her that getting back into your bed is an option. It’ll make the transition that much harder.

Staying consistent is absolutely critical. Show your child love. But return her to her own bed.

 

 

 

Getting your bed back will be totally worth it

 

When you got into the whole parenting thing, having your kid in your bed every night probably wasn’t what you had in mind. And if you’ve tried once or twice to break the habit already, it can feel impossible to get out of.

But by taking the right steps — and staying consistent — you can stop co-sleeping — and you can take your bed back.

And for the first time in a long time, your whole family can get a good night’s sleep.

Need more support? I’ve got your back.

I’ve helped hundreds of families get a great night’s sleep — and I can help yours, too. Check out my sleep plans to learn more!

how to stop co-sleeping

 

 

Baby Wakes Up Screaming

Posted on: April 11th, 2019 by Violet No Comments

Is Your Baby Waking Up Screaming? Here’s How to Wake Up With the Sun Again

Midnight crying can be stressful. But it’s also totally normal. Here are my top tips for teaching independent sleep.

 

Waking up with the sun feels great. You open your eyes and immediately you feel refreshed. You just got an amazing night of sleep. And as you hear the birds singing to you outside your window, you can’t help but smile.

But let’s be real. A night like that? It feels like an impossible dream right now.

It’s tough when your little one can’t sleep… for both of you. Your baby is still snatching sleep in one- or two-hour bursts, never really resting enough to wake up refreshed.

And your last solid night of sleep? Who even remembers?

Relax. It’s all totally normal. With the right approach, you’ll have your baby sleeping on her own before you know it.

And the best part? You’ll be sleeping like a baby, too.

Everyone needs a nighttime routine

How do you wind down at night?

Lately, I’ve been chilling out and watching The Good Place to relax before bed. Maybe you like to take time for some restorative yoga. Or perhaps a book and a glass of wine is your jam.

Everyone has some sort of bedtime routine. And whatever yours is, it helps you settle in for a great night of sleep.

Your baby is no different. Just like you, she has her own personal ways of getting settled before bedtime.

Especially if she’s a newborn, your baby may want to be nursed or rocked to sleep. But as she gets older, she’s going to find other ways to wind down at night. White noise, the gentle movement of a car, singing, sucking on a pacifier… the possibilities are endless.

 

Why independent sleep matters so much

But here’s the thing. When your baby’s bedtime rituals depend on you, she can’t fall asleep without your help. She hasn’t learned how to settle down without having you there to rock her, nurse her, or comfort her.

And that means she needs to learn a crucial skill: how to self-soothe.

If your baby still needs to learn how to self-soothe, you probably already know… because late nights are part of your routine.

You know the drill. You’re in bed, sound asleep after a very long day. And then you hear it: cries coming from the next room. Roll over. Check the alarm clock. 12:13 am.

Whenever your baby wakes up, she’s suddenly stressed… she doesn’t know where you are. And she can’t feel comfortable or safe without you.

And you’re not getting the sleep you need. So you’re stressed, too.

Sound familiar?

Here are a few common signs your baby needs help learning to sleep independently.

  • She needs nursing, rocking, or bouncing to help her settle down and sleep.
  • She wakes up crying or screaming — sometimes several times a night.
  • She needs you to reinsert her pacifier repeatedly each night.
  • Naps are a struggle. She doesn’t sleep longer than 30 minutes or so.
  • She rarely sleeps more than one or two hours at a time, even at night.
  • She often seems cranky or fussy from not getting enough sleep.

It’s hard to remember, but self-soothing is a skill. We learn it so early in life that it’s easy to forget. And if your baby is still depending on you to get settled at three or four months, it’s time to help her develop the skills to sleep on her own.

 

Focus on mastering the basics

If you haven’t nailed down the fundamentals of infant sleep yet, you’ll probably be amazed at how a few simple steps can transform your baby into a peaceful little prince. To help your baby get a better night’s sleep, the right place to start is with the basics. 

Create a bedtime routine. Setting up a regular sleep schedule makes things predictable and ensures that your baby knows when sleep is coming. Before bedtime, create a regular routine that you go through together. Maybe it’s taking a bath, reading a book, or listening to some quiet music. Whatever you choose, go for activities that reduce stimulation and help your little one relax.

Separate daytime and nighttime. If your baby frequently wakes up crying at night, she may not be learning to associate nighttime with sleep and daytime with waking activities. Helping her form this association can cut down on midnight crying fits. Anytime your baby is sleeping, keep the room quiet and dark. Just turn on a dim nightlight if you need to check on her. Respond to her as quickly and quietly as you can, then let her get back to sleep on her own.

Put your baby to bed drowsy but awake. “Drowsy but awake” is a simple but powerful method to ensure your child gets practice self-soothing. When you lay your baby down in the crib, make sure she’s calm and ready to settle down on her own, but not yet asleep. By allowing your baby to fall asleep by herself, you’ll give her consistent practice settling down without your help.

 

Are you part of the problem?

One last thing. We still haven’t tackled the biggest barrier to self-soothing: you.

Almost all babies will learn to self-soothe on their own if left alone to fall asleep in a drowsy, relaxed, awake state.

 

But what happens next?

There will be tears. You can take that to the bank. Some nights, you’ll lay down your little angel, close the door, and hear crying right away. The question is, what do you do?

Let’s be honest. When you hear your baby crying, it’s only natural to come running and comfort her. That’s your instinct as a parent: to protect your little one.

But if you do that, you’re not teaching her to self-soothe. And you’re not getting any closer to more peaceful nights for yourself, either.

The fact is, even at this early age, your little one needs to start learning to be independent and solve her own problems. What does she learn when she cries and you immediately come running? “This big special person takes care of me when I start crying.” And next time she wakes up feeling antsy, you know what she’ll do.

Now, if you don’t come running? “Damn. That big special person didn’t come for me. What’s up with that? I’ll keep it up and see if that gets her to come… No? … Still no? Hmm. I guess I’ll try something else.” And eventually — maybe after ten or fifteen minutes — she’ll settle in and fall asleep.

High five. Pour yourself a glass of wine. Time for This is Us.

You’ve got this!

You won’t magically turn things around in one night.

But stay consistent, and your little angel will be sleeping soundly… sooner than you ever thought possible.

 

If you’ve tried these strategies and your baby wakes up screaming on the regular, it might be time for extra support. I’ve helped countless families just like yours get a better night’s sleep. Take a look at my sleep packages to find out more! 

 

 

Toddler Sleep Training

Posted on: April 1st, 2019 by Violet 1 Comment

toddler sleep training

So you are now past the baby stage and your little one is not so little anymore. Your baby has turned into a toddler, and he’s still not sleeping! This is not unusual. A baby that doesn’t sleep well typically turns into a toddler that doesn’t sleep well. Then a toddler that doesn’t sleep well turns into a child that doesn’t sleep well. So what can you do? It’s time for some toddler sleep training! Toddler sleep training just like baby sleep training requires a consistent and appropriate plan. Here are a few sleep training tips for toddlers.

 

Bedtime routine

At this age a bedtime routine can be really fun. Your toddler understands more of what’s going on, and he may even want to be involved in choosing what happens during the routine. Make it fun. Have him pick out a favorite buddy to sleep with,  read him his favorite books, and say good night to everything in the room. Make it fun and keep it consistent.

Lay him down awake

Yes, awake! If your toddler is still using a bottle, rocking, nursing or any other prop to get to sleep, you can bet that he will expect the same during the night when he wakes. Toddlers wake anywhere from 2-6 times a night, this is completely normal. It is when they cannot go back to sleep without that prop that it becomes a problem. Helping your toddler learn to fall asleep without the prop, will help him start sleeping through the night.

 

Pick “the right” sleep training method

This is a biggie since laying a toddler down awake after he has been fed or rocked to sleep for the last year or two will most likely cause some major tears and protesting. So pick a method, and one that you are comfortable with.

When considering a toddler sleep training method think about your beliefs about sleep training and crying. Are you a parent that doesn’t mind tears? or are you a parent that will do everything possible to stop the tears. I’m sort of in between. I do not like my children crying unnecessarily, and will always try to comfort them when they need it. But I also will not allow them to eat chocolate all day just because they are crying and protesting to get their way. Picking a sleep training method that you are comfortable with and that is consistent with your beliefs is important so that you can commit to it. Lack of commitment is the number one reason a toddler sleep training method fails.

If you need help with a toddler sleep training plan, I can help! My methods have an almost 100% success rate. I always consider your toddler’s unique situation when creating a sleep plan to ensure the plan is the right one for you and your baby. Whether you are a parent that can tolerate some tears, or one that cannot stand any tears at all, I can help!

Take a look at the sleep packages and available options

Toddler sleep training

How to Get Baby to Nap in a Crib

Posted on: February 12th, 2019 by Violet No Comments

 

One of the strongest bonds is that of a mother and her child. And for a mother what can be more fulfilling than having your baby sleep securely in your arms. 

According to the guidelines of The American Academy of Sleep Medicine, babies that are under one year of age require to have at least 12 to 16 hours of sleep per day. And for babies aged 1 to 2 years, 11 to 14 hours of sleep will suffice.

So if most of these naps are taken by your baby in your arms then it won’t leave you enough scope to get your others chores done. So you need to make the transition of getting your baby to nap in their crib. 

This change is definitely an abrupt change in your baby’s life so you need to do it as gently as possible.

Creating the Best Conditions for Your Baby’s Nap 

It’s not easy for a baby to nap during the day due to all the disturbances all around. So it’s imperative that you create the right environment for your baby to nap in.

1. Place the Crib in your Room

It’s a good idea to place the crib in your bedroom beside your bed if you have the extra space. It will be easier for the baby to adapt to a room which is familiar. 

This way the change will be less abrupt for your baby. You can consider moving the crib out after a week or so when your baby will be used to sleeping in the crib in your room.

2. Darken the Room

For a baby to grab a sound sleep it’s imperative that the room needs to be well prepared. First of all, make the room really dark. A well lit up room hampers your baby’s nap as they may stay awake and scan the room. 

Day or night the room needs to be adequately dark to ensure that your baby has a good sleep.

3. Reduce Noise

A nap during the day time can easily be hampered by environmental noise. Since you can’t do much to stop the noise outside the house so it’s best to take preventive measures inside. 

You can start off by placing the crib in a quiet corner of the house that is far from the noise from other parts. You can also place a machine that generates white noise near the windows or door or other places that are likely to generate noise.

4. Prepare the Crib

You need to ensure that the crib your baby sleeps in is properly set up. Read the instruction manual that comes with the crib to set it up accurately. Follow the instructions properly to make sure the crib is ready to house your baby. 

Your baby will easily fall asleep in a crib that is clean and comfortable so make it welcoming by getting the right crib mattress. Blankets and pillows must be clean and soft. 

This is also necessary to ensure that your baby has strong bones.

Other Steps to Ensure Sound Sleep     

Ensuring your baby has a good nap is all a matter of falling into a proper sleep routine. So follow the steps below to make sure your baby has the proper nap routine.

1. Correct Age to Start

In order to get the transition right, you must start at the proper age of your baby. Four to six months of age is the perfect age to transfer your baby from the bassinet to the crib. 

The baby can be more easily moved out of the room as the night time feedings are far less frequent during this time.

2. Allow Time to your Baby to Prepare

It’s important to familiarize the baby with their new crib before moving them in. So allow the baby to play in the crib. Ample play time in the crib will enable the baby to get familiarized and feel cozy in his new crib. 

So, make sure you follow this play routine at least a week before you actually move them into the crib to nap.

3. Follow a Nap Routine

It’s a good idea to cue your baby in to think that it’s time to take nap. This can be done by following a few simple naptime routines. 

Things, like changing his diaper or swaying them while you sing to them near their crib, will let your baby know that nap time is near.

4. Pick the Best Time

Picking the right time to put them down on the crib is crucial for them to fall asleep easily. So keep them busy with various activities as long as they are up. At the first sign of drowsiness start putting them down on the crib. Allow them to fall asleep on their own at first, comfort them if they get too fussy. 

5. Settle in the Baby

Make your baby feel secure while laying them down to sleep in the crib. The best way to achieve that is laying them down gently on the crib. Make sure to lower them down feet first, placing them on their bum, finally the head needs to be laid down softly. 

This gentle move without any abruptness will ensure your baby snuggle off to a sound sleep. To help them settle in place your hand on their stomach or pat them softly.

6. Don’t Go In and Out of the Room

To ensure a sound nap for your baby it’s important that you don’t stay in the room while they try to nap. Darting in and out of the room or shuffling about inside will distract your baby and indefinitely lower their chances of falling asleep. 

7. Feeding Time 

Smaller babies need to be fed every two to three hours so it’s important for you to ensure that the baby is not hungry as you put them to sleep. The feeding time might be stretched out so make sure to offer them a feeding right before you try to put them down for the nap. 

A well-fed baby will have an uninterrupted nap for sure.

Conclusion

Parenthood comes naturally. It’s not something that can be taught. Each baby is different and so is there ways of adapting to any situation. The parents too faced separation anxiety. 

So, following the steps above will make it easier for both parent and baby when it comes to transitioning to the crib.  

Author Bio:

Stepheny is a content writer at FeedFond. She’s a loving mother to her two children and is passionate about psychology and philosophy. To read more of her articles, visit FeedFond.com.

  

 

5 Reasons Your Baby is Waking

Posted on: January 20th, 2019 by Violet No Comments

reasons your baby is waking

There are many reasons why your baby maybe waking, a milestone, a growth spurt, teething are all causes, but usually very temporary ones. When your baby is up all night for weeks or even months on end, there is usually a culprit. So let’s talk about the most common reasons your baby is waking.

 

Baby doesn’t know how to “self-soothe”

A baby that falls asleep by rocking, feeding, bouncing or any other “prop” may expect the exact same when they wake in between sleep cycles. Since babies have short sleep cycles, this results in frequent night wakings. The use of sleep props preventing your baby from “self soothing” is the number 1 culprit of night wakings and sleep troubles. Some babies are born self-soothers, other aren’t. It’s totally okay to give your baby a couple of minutes to fall back asleep on their own when they wake up in the middle of the night. If we jump up each time they wake up and immediately pick them up or rock them, it can actually have a negative affect and cause them to wake up instead of falling back asleep.

 

Baby is hungry

I don’t know about you, but I just can’t fall asleep if I am experiencing those hunger pains deep in my belly while I try to go to sleep. Chances are your baby might be feeling the same. Newborns need more frequent feeds than older infants and may even need a top up during the night. But once a baby is eating solids, with 3 well-balanced meals throughout the day, along with additional snacks, plenty of milk and hydration, this will significantly improve your baby’s ability to sleep well throughout the night. Most experts agree that babies can typically sleep through the night between the age of 3 and 6 months. If your baby is waking for that one feeding a little longer than that, that should be fine too. Often encouraging a “tank up” before your baby goes to sleep or around dinner is good for babies of all ages.

 

Baby is overtired

Not being able to sleep because your baby is overtired, is often the case with adults too. Have you ever felt like you just can’t make it through until the night because you’re so tired, only to find that you suddenly have a surge of energy right before you go to sleep making it impossible for you to settle? Well, babies suffer from the same thing. This is caused by a chemical response of adrenaline and cortisol to the system making it hard to settle and relax.

 

Baby is in pain or suffering discomfort

Teething, an upset stomach, earaches, or infections, can all be a cause of why your baby isn’t sleeping. They may even be waking up because they’re too hot or possibly too cold. Or you may have just changed their diaper only to find them unable to go to sleep because they made a last minute poop and are uncomfortable sitting it in!

 

Baby is too excited to sleep

Overstimulation before bed is often a problem of why baby won’t go to sleep. Getting them tired out with fun play does help to an extent, however getting an already tired baby overexcited can lead to them to being overtired. Exposure to television or electronic devices can also cause overstimulation. Encouraging a “winding down” period before bed is very helpful. You can do this by giving your baby a relaxing bath, playing calming music, diffusing a sleep-promoting essential oil in baby’s room, or by enjoying a few warm cuddles with your little one.

 

The “Secret Sauce to Sweet Slumber”

You may have found yourself reading this article as you’re currently suffering from sleep deprivation and in a desperate attempt to find a solution to your problem. You’ve woken up this morning feeling even more exhausted than when you went to bed in the first place, and you know action needs to be taken.

Is there any magic in getting a baby to sleep, you ask?

We completely understand how you feel and we’re happy to say that you’re in good hands.

Take a look at how Sleep, Baby, Sleep® can help your baby sleep through the night