Rocking your baby to sleep was probably no big deal for the first few months. But now you’re probably exhausted beyond belief. You just want your sleep back so you can function. It’s hard to accomplish your goals and get dinner on the table when you’re holding your baby for sleep all day during naptime and all night at bedtime.
There are a few different sleep training methods that can work for your family. Today, I’m teaching you about 3 sleep training methods, that involve SOME tears, but they work very effectively. If you’re ok with hearing SOME crying, these methods will work for you.
Remember to choose just ONE sleep training method and STICK TO IT. Also, keep in mind that these methods are best suitable for babies ages 6-24 months old.
Here are the methods:
- Shhh/Pat & Pick Up- Put Down: This is exactly what it sounds like. Once your bedtime routine is through, lay your baby down in the crib, drowsy but awake. If she starts to cry, put your hand on your baby and use gentle pats while saying “shhhhh” over and over. If this doesn’t calm your baby down, you may pick up your baby and offer physical comfort, but as soon as she is calm, put her back down so she can fall asleep independently.
- Char in the Room: Once again, go through your bedtime routine and lay your baby down while he’s still awake. Sit in a chair (or on a pillow, or on the floor) next to your child’s crib. If your child begins to cry, you may comfort your child. Continue to sit in the chair with minimal interaction until your child is asleep. Every few nights, move your chair further away from your child’s crib. Once your chair is outside of the room your child will be able to fall asleep independently at bedtime.
- Quick Checks: For this method, you would be leaving the room as your child falls asleep. Once you are through with your bedtime routine and your child is in the crib, leave the room and close the door. Stay out of the room for as long as you are comfortable with. There is no right answer to how many minutes you should remain out of the room without comforting your child, but 5-10 minutes is perfectly fine. When you do go in the room to check on your child, reassure him that he is ok and that you’re still there, but it’s night- night time. You do not need to increase the amount of time you are out of the room over the course of sleep training unless you feel like you are comfortable doing so.
Not sure if your child needs sleep training? Take the quiz to find out!
Need a sleep coach NOW?
If you’re ready to start sleep training, let’s set up a time to chat! Some things to think about when deciding when you want to start sleep training your baby:
- Ensure it’s the proper timing- make sure your baby isn’t sick, you aren’t traveling, or you don’t have any big life changes coming (new baby, moving, switching jobs/childcare, etc.).
- Be prepared to put in the work. Consistency will pay off in the long run. Sleep training isn’t an overnight success; it takes many nights and dedication to help your baby learn to sleep.
- Create a plan or hire me as your sleep consultant for one-on-one help.