'Wake & Sleep': Teaching Babies to Sleep on Their Own
All parents want to know, ‘When will my baby start to sleep through the night?’
And, that reveals one of the top myths about infant sleep! Because no baby…no child…no adult EVER sleeps through the night!
That is correct! Three to four times per night, we all awaken at least a tiny bit. So your goal is not really to get your baby sleeping through the night, but to help her learn to self-soothe when she—inevitably—begins to awaken in the middle of the night.
Infant Sleep Training: How to get a baby to sleep through the night
As tempting as it is to rock your baby to sleep and then gently slide her back into the cot, doing that every night makes your little one more reliant on your help during those little middle of the night awakenings. Of course, you can enjoy letting your baby sleep in your arms, but I suggest you also help her develop the skill to fall asleep on her own—and she can!
‘Wake and Sleep’ Sleep Training
How to sleep train a baby? Training your baby to self soothe and sleep through the night is made possible through a technique called ‘wake and sleep.’
Here is how to sleep train your infant with this method:
- Every evening at bedtime, swaddle your little one, turn on rough white noise as loud as a shower, feed and burp her, let her fall asleep in your arms and then lay her down.
- BUT, right after you slide your munchkin into the cot, rouse her until her eyes open (tickle her neck, scratch her feet, etc).
- After a few seconds she will close her eyes again and she will slide back to sleep.
- If she fusses, she may be hungry or uncomfortable, so pick her up to feed and calm her, but be sure to awaken her again when you put her back down.
I know it sounds crazy, but those few seconds of drowsy awakenings are the first baby steps to helping your infant learn how to sleep through the night!
Did you know? Happiest Baby’s SNOO Smart Sleeper was actually developed using the same principles from the wake and sleep method. Between 4-6 months, the smart sleeper gradually weans your baby off motion, training her to sleep independently and make an easy transfer to a cot. Learn more.
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Disclaimer: The information on our site is NOT medical advice for any specific person or condition. It is only meant as general information. If you have any medical questions and concerns about your child or yourself, please contact your health provider. Breastmilk is the best source of nutrition for babies. It is important that, in preparation for and during breastfeeding, mothers eat a healthy, balanced diet. Combined breast- and bottle-feeding in the first weeks of life may reduce the supply of a mother's breastmilk and reversing the decision not to breastfeed is difficult. If you do decide to use infant formula, you should follow instructions carefully.