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When do babies grow out of only napping in a sling?(17 Posts)
Our 4.5mo DS will only nap in the sling. I'm on the point of thinking that the only way of getting him to sleep elsewhere will involve significant amount of crying, but could probably just about cope for another month or so if there was a big enough chance that he'd just grow out of it. If you had a sling-only napper, when did they grow out of it?
Things we have tried include: white noise, dummy, blackout blinds, singing the same song each time he falls asleep in the sling and singing it when trying to get him to sleep in the cot, cranial osteopathy, various forms of attempts at swaddling etc., warming moses basket/cot with hot water bottle, experimenting with timings of naps, and probably lots of other things besides. I've read The No Cry Nap Solution but think I've exhausted the ideas in there. At the moment it takes most of the things above plus half an hour of sshing him crying etc. to get him to sleep for maybe 10-20 minutes in the cot. He doesn't sleep in the pram, car or swing - just cries, and if I feed him to sleep, never sleeps for more than 10 minutes. Don't think I've got the resilience to do e.g. ssh/pat or PUPD properly without support, so wondering about going the sleep clinic/consultant route (esp as we have issues with nighttime sleep too).
Can you put him down once he's fallen asleep? We found that at around 4 months DD would go to sleep in the sling and then we could put her down on the bed. We still walk her to sleep in the sling (she is two). I'm expecting that will stop when she gives up her nap and is tired enough just to go to sleep in bed.
There's roughly a 25% chance he'll stay asleep or we can get him back to sleep quickly if we try and transfer him from sling in the evening (he's in the sling in the evening too) and if it fails you're starting again from scratch :-(
What kind of cot does he have? I have to say, we swear by our Nature's Nest - I don't know how people manage without one! Our DS spent his first three months in a sling more or less all day because he wouldn't be put down, but now he's happy to nap in the nest - the huge benefit as far as I'm concerned is that it bounces gently - it's just like being rocked or walked around but MUCH less exhausting. At night you can just stick an arm out of the bed, half asleep, and give it a bounce. it's an amazing piece of kit. In fact I'm typing this with one hand while bouncing him off to sleep with the other. You can pick them up on ebay for about £60, and once he doesn't use it any more there's a bouncy-chair adaptor which they love after they're 5 months old or so.
does he fall asleep on the boob or bottle?
It really depends. My DS started to be able to be rocked to sleep or bf to sleep at 14 weeks. But I've known babies who just got the hang of sleeping without it at 6 months.
I'd definitely go with the sling for a while if it gets longer naps. Most of the books agree that a nap of less than 30 mins is the same as no nap at all. Rubbish naps probably mean worse nights.
One other thing - have you considered whether he might have reflux? Lots of babies who only sleep in slings are like that because being upright helps the reflux problem.
Well our LO (7 mo/28 weeks plus 5 days) is still terrible at day time naps and would rather howl and thrash about wildly screaming with tiredness than go to sleep, but she's slept through the night since she was 6 weeks old so I suppose I can't really complain about that too much.
What happens if you try to nap with your DD in bed? That sometimes works for us, although not always. When she's really asleep (after 10-15 mins) I can get up carefully, having had a little rest myself which is nice!
Hmm I suddenly realised that other people have stairs so their beds are further away - we live in bungalow so she's only in the room next door (with door open) so I can see her. I put cushions around her, just in case and leave her on our super king size bed - she'd have to roll 6 feet to fall off but actually we have a non-roller anyway. She hates being on her tummy so won't voluntarily roll onto it, so it's fairly safe to leave her where I can see her. I can see though that if that isn't the case you're till going to have to pick the LO up and put them in their cot or on playmat.
Thanks everyone for your responses.
I've tried breastfeeding him lying down to sleep for naps and stayed there with but wakes up after about ten minutes then too. Even when we coslept I could never get up in the night without waking him but as i cant do much during his naps anyway would be a short-term solution to my aching back if he actually slept longer!
Think reflux might be a possibility - he does sick up maybe 7 or 8 times a day these days. Not sure what is normal. Mentioned it to HV a week or so ago in fact and they said to give him comfort milk for his nightly bottle of formula for a fortnight and see if it helped. I asked if I should see a GP but they said to see how it goes first. I think in retrospect he may have had silent reflux when younger but that it might have evolved into reflux - is that possible?
Nature's Nest looks worth looking into (more money to spend! But would be worth it if it worked) - will need to check if there's a weight limit that he is close to although he is small. Wonder if I can find a way to try him out in one first.
If it were my baby, I'd go straight to the GP. It might be worth starting a thread on the breast & bottle feeding board - lots of people with experience of reflux there.
Yes should really rule out it being something medically once and for all. Need to get clear in my head what I would say to gp though - posting on the feeding board is a good idea - thanks!
It's not reflux if he's a 'happy sicker' - it's just normal posseting. DS throws up after pretty much every feed, but it just means he's full!
Was told by GP to come back if he starts being sick more and to talk to HVs about his sleep as that's their job sigh
Looking at the 'my baby will not nap' thread, there are quite a few older babies on there, so not getting wildly optimistic that it's something he will necessarily grow out of anytime soon. I'm exhausted of trying different things too, so think if he doesn't crack it himself soon, then I'll just have to resign myself to the fact that he'll have to cry.
I slung my ds2 all day until he was 20 weeks. That was when he outgrew colic and cried much less so I started to put him down normally.
He was a very sicky baby and I changed his formula a couple of times until I found one that made him puke less.
My DD napped in a sling until around 6 months. That's when I started being able to rock her off to sleep and then put her down. Unless she's in the carseat or pram she's still rocked off to sleep now (she's 1 - sigh).
Here I am 8 years after your post but with exactly the same issue. Im desperated and wonder if you will ser my message and tell me how and when the situation changed for you.
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