Baby sleep training – sleeping through the night
We all wait for the time when our baby is sleeping through the night, because this means that everyone else has a good night’s sleep as well. Baby sleep training doesn’t have to be complicated or stressful on you or your baby, it just takes a little bit of persistence and some time and you will soon have your baby sleeping through the night.
If everything goes well, your baby should naturally start to fall into a good sleeping routine between 3 and 6 months of age, but if not – here are some training tips to help your baby settle and sleep throughout the night
Create a sleeping routine
It is a good idea to always put your baby down to sleep in the same room, if at all possible. This is because they will become used to the routine and begin to learn that when they are in their cot in the nursery, that it is sleep time.
So put together a bedtime routine, which happens every time you want your baby or toddler to go to sleep and then you won’t have any problems settling baby whenever they need a nap. Your routine can consist of a warm bath followed by a lovely soft massage or a bedtime story or sing along.
As soon as your bedtime routine is completed, put your baby or toddler down in their cot while they are still sleepy, but not completely asleep yet. If you do this, your baby should continue to drift off to sleep without any problems.
Keep checking on them
When you are first initiating baby sleep training, always be on hand listening out for your baby or toddler if they wake and are upset. If you really have trouble helping them to settle at night, then you can stay in the room with them, but do your best to keep them in their cot.
If you keep picking them up because they won’t settle, then your baby or infant won’t learn to settle on their own and you will have to continually be there rocking them to sleep every night. Teaching your baby to ‘self-soothe’ and to fall asleep themselves will make you whole life so much better – a good night’s sleep will do you wonders!
You might want to stay in the room with them until they are fast asleep and then gently leave the nursery.
Still use your bedtime routine – even if baby falls asleep feeding
You might feel that this is a bit weird, but with baby sleep training it is a good idea to always go through your bedtime routine every night. Even if they fall asleep breast feeding, wake them up and give them their bath and follow your routine. This way your baby or toddler will learn that this routine means bedtime.
If you feed them and then put your baby straight down for the night, you break the usual routine and it isn’t any different to any other part of the day when they wake up 2 or 3 hours later for a feed – not what you want!
You might not want to wake your baby if they are already falling asleep, but they really do need a bedtime routine that happens every night. Your goal in baby sleep training is to help them to fall asleep themselves, so when you put them down after a night feed, they automatically drift off to sleep without you having to rock them or sing to them.
What if this doesn’t work?
If this doesn’t work, your baby might be too young for baby sleep training and you might have to leave this technique until later when they are around 3 months of age. Newborn sleep patterns can take a while before they are established, so if your sleep training doesn’t work at first, simply wait a while and try again.
Sometimes your baby or infant might be too tired to self soothe or feels irritable. In this case make sure to go through your bedtime routine and give your toddler the time to settle themselves before you intervene. When your baby is fighting sleep, this is the time to ensure that you follow the steps of your bedtime routine to the letter.
Baby or toddler sleep training is a great way for settling baby at night, but you can also use a baby sound machine, which can be a like a heaven sent gift for many parents.
There are a few different types of baby sound machines available from the bestselling Baby Shusher, to the Cloud B Sleep Sheep and the Graco Sweet Slumber sound machine.
So check these out and with your bedtime routine, you should have your no trouble settling baby at any time of the day or night.
Click here to read my reviews on the best sleep sound machines for babies.