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6 Months Without Sleeping Through the Night
The baby is already 6 months old and I expected him to sleep through the night. Unfortunately he still wakes up in the middle of the night, normally 1-2 times. I thought it was because she was hungry, but I read a lot about it and I think she is getting used to falling asleep on the breast.
We all probably wake up several times a night, but the difference between babies and us is that babies have to learn to fall asleep on their own. All babies will be able to do this on their own at some point in their lives, but since you don’t know when that will happen, it might be a good idea to try and teach them as soon as possible, or should I say as soon as possible. In my case, my baby uses the breast to fall asleep on his own and my mission now is to teach him how to fall asleep on his own.
The first thing I plan to do is take a close look at my child’s sleeping habits; what time he wakes up, when he takes a nap, and how long and at what time he wakes up at night. That way I’ll have a better idea of his sleeping pattern.
My baby’s bedtime is bathtime, reading, and feeding, and he usually falls asleep at the breast. I decided to change this routine because it reinforces his addiction to falling asleep on the breast. His new bed routine will be: feeding, bathing and reading before bed. Putting your baby to bed while they are awake will help start the process of learning how to fall asleep on their own.
The next question is what do I do next? I’ve talked to a lot of moms and everyone has a different opinion on what the best method is. I think that, like many things in parenting, this is a very personal decision, and even if there is a right one, it would be almost impossible to determine which one it is.
The “Let Your Baby Fall Asleep” Method. I’m not a fan of this “method”, it’s basically letting the baby cry until he falls asleep. This may work for some parents, but I find it unnecessarily cruel.
There is another method called “Ferberization”, named after the person who proposed it: Dr. Richard Ferber. You put the baby to sleep and if he cries, you leave him alone for 5 minutes, after this time you enter the room, pat him and leave the room again. Next time you let him cry for 10 minutes and continue this technique, increasing the time you let him cry until he falls asleep by 5 minutes. I’m not a fan of letting the baby cry, I know some people may think I’m a weak mother and that the baby controls me, but I just don’t think it’s fair to him. Crying is the only way he can communicate with us, and if we ignore him when he does, what kind of message are we sending him?
There is another method called “systematic awakening”. It doesn’t sound like much fun, but at least it will allow you to avoid your baby crying for hours. First, you need to keep a diary of the times your child wakes up at night for a week. Once you have an idea of your baby’s routine, you need to set the alarm for about half an hour before you expect him to wake up. Once the alarm goes off, you get up (that’s the “not so fun” part) and have to wake the baby up (that’s the “even less fun” part) and do what you normally do when he wakes up on his own. Wake him up? Poor thing, really? she looks so peaceful when she sleeps i don’t know if i could handle it. For those who can, you need to anticipate each usual awakening in the same way and gradually increase the time between awakenings. This way, you will be able to remove them within a few weeks.
So after considering all the different options, I’m going to try the method of simply strengthening sleep rhythms. The main thing about this method is that you never let your child get too tired. Many times I have seen my child tired and acting like he is ready to party all night (my partner loves this because he really thinks he wants to play) when in reality he was ready to go to bed a few hours ago. This method says that if you can anticipate your baby’s natural sleepiness and allow him to sleep in the right environment (in my case, that means sleeping in his crib and without distractions), he will fall asleep easily. One thing I will have to change is my response to my baby waking up at night, instead of feeding him I will respond to him to provide reassurance but let him fall asleep on his own.
Good night and sleep well
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