It’s easy to lie to yourself that your baby’s poor sleeping habit is a norm. After all, every other mother around you has the same struggles. But the truth is, for the sake of your sanity, you need to find a way to get them to have the required amount of sleeping hours per day.
From recent research, we know that inadequate sleep leads to exhaustion, weight loss, learning disabilities, post-partum depression and low self-image. You wouldn’t want that for you or your baby, would you?
Every human being wakes up at night at some point, but as adults, we barely notice because we have mastered the art of going back to sleep by ourselves. Since babies haven’t learned how to self-soothe, chances are you may find yourself having to wake up multiple times during the night which can be pretty frustrating.
If you have to wake up four times in one night to get your baby to go back to bed, especially when you have to wake up early to go the office to work at dawn, you would probably be feeling very cranky and slightly miserable right about now.
To help babies adapt and sleep well, they too need to learn how to go back to bed without any assistance or sleep prop,’ and that’s where sleep training comes in. But before you begin, there are some crucial things to note:
For the first two months of your baby’s life, forget about sleep training.
There is no right approach or perfect method for sleep training because every family is different; what may work for you might not be what works for everyone else. It’s not magic! Just because you start implementing a sleep technique doesn’t mean your baby will be snoring all night long in a few days time. It might take weeks to win this war.
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Don’t give up.
Just because a technique doesn’t work, today doesn’t mean it won’t work months later. And just because a method works today, doesn’t mean it will work three months from now. So be willing to be flexible with your choice of technique.
Now, that that’s settled, here is the list of ways to sleep train your child:
- Bedtime routines (which is a must because children love predictability).
- Cry it out (which can be quite deafening and hard to deal with if you love peace).
- Reduced feeding.
- Kissing game.
- Gradual retreat.
- Pick up and put down.
- Co-sleeping and
- Independent settling.
These techniques can be combined, it all depends on what you and your spouse are comfortable doing. Sleep training is hard; there will be nights of feeling like it’s not working but hang in there. The benefits of having a sleep trained child cannot be stressed enough. If you want to wake up fresh and energized, this is the route to follow. Don’t let life happen to you, take the reigns and dictate the pace.