When I first heard about “sleep training,” I was like what is that? I thought sleeping was a skill that comes naturally. Apparently it is not! Even though babies sleep a lot, they don’t know when to sleep and how to sleep. Sleep training helps them go to sleep without needing mama to soothe them every night and helps them know when it is time to sleep as well as helping them sleep longer. Plus sleep is SO IMPORTANT for babies. Their development and growth needs sleep. Not just them but all us mamas need sleep too, right?
Finn usually put to bed at 7pm every night. He wakes up 1am in the morning to eat and goes back to sleep until around 8am. Some nights, he sleeps 10-11 hours straight without waking up to eat!! I love those nights!! I will share a couple tips that we think has helped him sleep longer at night.
First of all, I’m not a sleep training expert. I’m just sharing what’s worked for me and my baby. So here are some tips:
Our 1st 4 weeks with Finn was so hard. We were new to the whole parenting thing. We didn’t know anything, so we just went to sleep whenever he slept. Most of the time, I couldn’t sleep well since Finn woke up every 2 hours. We weren’t consistent with his sleep schedule. There were some night we put him in bed at 10 pm, or 11pm.. I was so exhausted all the time.
When he was 4 weeks old. I decided to read more about sleep training. I found this book that is very helpful called, “Get Your Sleep on” by Christine Lawler. You can also find her on instagram @thepeacefulsleeper (you are welcome! :)). What I love about this book is it is only 98 pages long and super straight to the point! I bought it off of Amazon.com for only $14.99. Click on the book below to see the Amazon listing.
It is very important to develop a routine when they are young.
Finn’s routine starts out with feeding him at 6:30pm. Then we give him a bath (which is his favorite). We lotion him and put him in PJs. Once in his crib, we usually read a book to him. I know that he probably doesn’t understand anything, but we do it anyway 🙂 I usually read to him for about 5 mins, then we give him a kiss and tell him “night night” and leave the room.
When I first began training him at 4 weeks old, I used the “cry it out method.” This method involves letting your baby cry until they fall asleep once they’re in the crib for the night. The first night he cried for 20 mins then fell sleep. The second night 15 mins. On the fourth night he fell asleep after 5 mins of crying–a pretty drastic change! Now he doesn’t cry anymore. He just falls sleep after we leave his room.
There are many different opinions on the “cry it out method.” You definitely don’t have to use this method if you think it is not right for you. I used it since it worked for us. Another thing to point out is that the book recommends to begin sleep training your baby at 4 months old. I began training him at 4 weeks old. Again, every parent is different in raising their child. Do what works for you! I’m glad I trained him when he was that young. Finn is now a really good sleeper, and I’m a happy mama.
2. FIND A GOOD SLEEPING SACK
There are so many sleeping sack option out there. We tried so many of them and none of them really worked well. When Finn was 6 weeks old, my friend introduced me to a sleep sack brand called Dreamland. After hearing about this awesome product, I bought one for Finn right away. This sleeping sack is different than other sleeping sacks. It is a whole body weighted sleeping sack, almost like a weighted blanket. It makes your baby feel like they’re being hugged when worn. The first night Finn used it, he fell asleep so fast and he slept much longer than he used to, even with sleep training. He still wears it every night. I couldn’t be happier.
Click on the picture below to see the Dreamland sleeping sack. Use code SKY15 to get 15% off your order if you choose to get one yourself.
These two things are what has helped Finn fall asleep on his own every night. Again, you don’t have to do the same things I do with my baby. If you are the kind of parent who likes to rock your baby to sleep, or nurse him or her to sleep, there is nothing wrong with doing so. Just do whatever works for you and your baby. Sleep training really saved me and my sleep. I love how Finn always wakes up so happy because he gets enough good sleep at night. This mama need as much sleep as she can to function well 🙂