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What age to start a sleep routine?

(202 Posts)

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Stillmonday Tue 14-May-19 20:17:52

My baby is 4 months old and we practise safe co sleeping. I've started taking him to bed about 8.30 and feed for a while then he will fall asleep around 9.30/10pm ish.
I know he should be going to sleep earlier but is there any point introducing a sleep routine now or waiting until he's a little older?

Copperandtod Tue 14-May-19 20:20:53

What does safe co sleeping mean?

Goingonabeerhunt Tue 14-May-19 20:23:03

https://www.lullabytrust.org.uk/safer-sleep-advice/co-sleeping/

Goingonabeerhunt Tue 14-May-19 20:23:22

For @Copperandtod ☝🏻

InDubiousBattle Tue 14-May-19 20:24:16

We started at 6 months, didn't really see any point until they could be left alone to sleep, so we kept them downstairs with us feeding/napping until 6 months then started putting them to bed.

Stillmonday Tue 14-May-19 20:28:19

I was thinking around 6 months too but wondered if I'm making things harder for myself by leaving it longer

InDubiousBattle Tue 14-May-19 20:53:29

Tbh we found the introduction of a bedtime at 6 months relatively easy with both of our dc. Ds had started to sleep in a moses basket downstairs for a while in the evening by then, dd far less so but both were fed to sleep and put into their cots at 6 months without much fuss.

BunnyJumps Tue 14-May-19 20:55:52

We started ours as soon as it became apparent he needed a bedtime. Starting the bath at 6pm, then story with song, then feed then sleep. He is 12 weeks old.

Mississippilessly Tue 14-May-19 21:02:10

I would say 6 months or when they dont settle downstairs anymore, whichever is earlier. My DS is 8 months now, I think we have probably done it since around 4 months.

Fatted Tue 14-May-19 21:08:09

I always just let both of mine fall into a routine. When they started doing the same thing at the same time long enough for me to notice, then it was a routine.

What you're doing now sounds like a 'routine' to me.

What is it that you want to do differently at bed time compared to what you do now? Do you still want to co-sleep?

I never really bothered with bath, bottle, bed etc. It was more of a get changed into Pj's, have a bottle and then cuddle to sleep with mine.

Amimissingsomethinghere Tue 14-May-19 21:15:04

I started at 5 weeks... but that's just me.. I like routine

hopefulhalf Tue 14-May-19 21:20:18

Amazingly 10 days.

Stillmonday Tue 14-May-19 22:07:21

I can't believe how early some of you have managed to get yours into a routine.
My baby was nowhere near ready any earlier and I'm only just starting to think about it at 4 months.

I read a short baby book to him everyday but he's not interested and it's a struggle to keep his interest to the end so I don't think a book before bed would help yet which I why I'm thinking of leaving a little while longer.

I'd like to eventually get him into a routine so he doesn't get overtired and upset plus I'd like to have a wind down time to myself as I don't get anytime at all currently (Velcro baby)

Copperandtod Tue 14-May-19 22:44:42

From day one but routine not established until few weeks old. Never co slept. Put them down in cot at bed time so they could go to sleep. Sometimes already asleep but often still awake. Sleeping during the night within a couple of months. Couldn’t bear the thought of putting them to sleep and struggling through no sleep for months or years on end

Iwanttoredecorateagain Tue 14-May-19 22:49:51

We introduced a routine at 4m but it took a while for baby to recognise. Maybe a few months but he did start to learn that, pjs, singsong and cuddle meant bed time. Once familiar with that, at about 9 to 10 months we started self settling as part of routine but i avoided holidays, teething, illlness. This worked out and he settles well.

I really regret embedding self settling when dc1 was 4 months old. I wish i waited until dc1 was nearer 9months for that. Looking back he wasn't ready.

Kiwiinkits Wed 15-May-19 05:13:13

From day 1. The EASY routine in the Baby Whisperer. It bloody worked. All mine were/are great sleepers. I can't separate cause and effect. All I know is that they're good sleepers.

Kiwiinkits Wed 15-May-19 05:15:20

Routine was firmly established by 6 weeks. In hindsight it really helped ME to have a routine, to know what I was doing, to have a plan. I'm not an attachment sort of mum.

hopefulhalf Wed 15-May-19 05:59:21

Gina Ford/Baby whisperer was very popular in the early noughties. Also the advice about being in the same room didn't come until 2008 ish ???

Mississippilessly Wed 15-May-19 07:15:04

Copperandtod maybe I'm being over over sensitive but your writing often seems to suggest that people choose to have sleepless nights. You cant seem to accept that just maybe your babies and other babies are different?

Flatwhite32 Wed 15-May-19 07:20:56

I started at 8 weeks using The Blissful Baby Expert routine. It worked for us!

hopefulhalf Wed 15-May-19 07:22:56

Mississippilessly it's not entirely due to chance though either. I know that it is desperately unfashionable at the moment (although the tide may be turning slowely) but infants put in to a routine very early (eg weeks rather than months old) do sleep more reliably. Ask any neonatal or maternity nurse, yes of course different babies have different personalities, some are more laid back some less so. Most can be nudged to sleep a good 5-6 hours at 6 weeks and 7-8 hours at 3-4 months. Honestly these babies cry less as both the parent and infant are anticipating their needs.

Mississippilessly Wed 15-May-19 07:30:08

Can you explain what you mean by a routine?

hopefulhalf Wed 15-May-19 07:39:28

By routine I mean a pattern to feeds and sleeping, so that things happen at about the same time each day. This may involve for example stimulating a baby after a feed so they don't go straight to sleep or encouraging a baby who has been asleep for more than 2 hours between 7am and 7pm to wake up (pulling the curtains, changing the nappy) so they don't go in to a super deep sleep at the "wrong" time. Exposure to morning sunlight is also very important in helping an infant "set" a circadian cycle, as is night feeds being done in low light without excessive talking or stimulation. Things like that, just gentle nudges so by 3-4 months the baby is eating and sleeping at predictable times, which suit the family they have been born into. None of this is very controversial in eg: France where women return to work at 3 months.

Kez200 Wed 15-May-19 07:46:24

We did it straight away in our room in a moses basket then moving into a cot (putting moses basket in the cot at first). One slept through 10 - 5 at 9 weeks. The other at 12 weeks. I dont remember the number of weeks we did the transfer as they are both mid 20s now. Co sleeping wasnt a thing we knew about back then, it was mainly moses baskets in parents bedroom.

hopefulhalf Wed 15-May-19 07:46:25

Sorry and there is a cultural expecration that an infant will be sleeping a decent chunk by then. Those cultural norms were prevalent in the UK also from the 50's till as I say the early noughties, I think the introduction of long maternity leave as well as the change in weaning guildelines shifted the expectations.

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