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Does your sling-ed (/slung??) baby sleep at night?

(17 Posts)
ahhyesiseeyouvepooedonyourfoot Mon 10-Oct-11 12:43:24

As I've mentioned on another thread I would love to sling my baby all the time i think it's wonderful and she seems to happy and goes to sleep so quickly there, but the main ammo of the 'rod for your own back' crew seems to be they'll never sleep by themselves and will never sleep through the night. At the moment DD (4 weeks) is a great sleeper - sleeping for 5hrs at a time at night and going back down really easily
Am I going to ruin that by slinging her?

catsanddogs Mon 10-Oct-11 12:48:58

I had dd2 almost permanently in a sling for the first six months, but not dd1. She slept a lot during the day (in the sling), and was a far better sleeper at night than dd1. They were both in bed with me. Hth

Grumpla Mon 10-Oct-11 12:49:19

Mine was happy to fall asleep on his own from about 3/4 months onwards, slinging didn't really seem to affect it tbh.

He didn't sleep through for ages, used to drain a bottle every three or four hours through the night until he was about 1 but again I don't think that had much to do with being carried, he was always pretty easy to settle once he'd had his milk!

My gut feeling is that it helps your baby feel more secure to be carried when you are out and about and this has a positive impact on feeling secure when you are at home / in the night as well.

FeelMyWraith Mon 10-Oct-11 12:52:38

DD was slung from birth, ds is 5wo and lives in the sling. He sleeps really well at night, wakes for a couple of feeds and settles well.

I think it actually makes them more secure and better able to cope with self settling when they're developmentally ready for it.

With dd we coslept, slung, etc until she was well over 3. She's a very independent, determined and happy young lady.

ChunkyPickle Mon 10-Oct-11 12:58:05

I really think this is an individual baby thing again.

Mine's always been worn when out and about, and around the house if fussy, and co-slept from 2 months (I had to work and needed my sleep).

He's just moved into his own bed (no problem, totally happy, he was just getting too big to share a double with dp and I) but he's still hungry at night, so he has one feed during the night, and fidgets/resettles himself for once or twice more at 14 months.

My sister's baby is never worn, sleeps in his own cot, fidgets constantly and will only fall asleep if held during the day.

Mine were constantly slung and co-slept until about the age of 3.

Neither ever woke me at night except for boob, neither ever really cried.

ahhyesiseeyouvepooedonyourfoot Mon 10-Oct-11 14:07:13

Thanks this is useful to know - we're not co sleeping with her (tiny bed and our health visitor scared the bejeesus out of us about co sleeping with little ones) my aunt was visiting at the weekend and when she saw me let her fall asleep on me and left her there she said I was 'breeding bad habits that would cripple me when she was bigger' and it put the frighteners on me a bit!

AngelDog Mon 10-Oct-11 18:33:17

I was told that if I carried on slinging 10 week old DS for naps I'd still be doing it when he's 2.

He'll be 2 in January and he hasn't had a sling nap at all since he was 6 months (it stopped working hmm).

He doesn't self-settle yet at night but does sleep pretty well when not disturbed by teething or developmental leaps. We co-sleep but he's happy sleeping on his own too.

When we started slinging him for naps (age 9 weeks), his night sleep improved dramatically as he was no longer chronically overtired.

BertieBotts Mon 10-Oct-11 18:38:33

Seems like a random association to make to me. I can at least see the logic in the "co-sleeping makes a bad sleeper" advice (though I still don't agree with it!) DS has always been an excellent sleeper, 7 hours at 7 weeks, was slung, in fact has slept worse since I switched to mainly using a pushchair confused (Or perhaps my expectations have just been higher since that sort of age, I don't know.)

Habits can always be broken, gently, it doesn't necessarily mean a big battle if you want to change things later. And there is always the theory (which I like smile) which says meeting their needs when they are little and letting them develop confidence, sleeping skills etc at their own pace means that those skills, confidence etc exist on a solid foundation of knowing that you will always meet their needs, rather than being reliant on you for it forever.

I mean honestly, have you ever seen someone walking around carrying a ten year old because they couldn't bear to be parted from Mummy? Thought not grin

HV is probably wrong about co-sleeping, BTW. They are often very prejudiced against it. But that's a whole other thread!

BertieBotts Mon 10-Oct-11 18:38:53

walking staggering, probably!

CarefulUpThere Mon 10-Oct-11 23:05:31

DD1 always had naps in the sling and then stopped napping altogether at about 18 months, apart from the odd one here and there when especially tired. She slept right through the night (12-13 hours) from 13 months, so was still napping in the sling at that stage.

If you want to co-sleep but feel nervous then I can say a bedside cot (ie with the side off and mattresses at the same height) has worked wonders for us - I kind of roll partly into the cot when feeding and then back out into the bed when finished, this way we all have enough space. Everyone else I know who has one though has said the baby ends up in bed with them - whereas DD2 (now 16 months) often actually rolls herself back in the cot after feeding, she seems to like me to be an arms reach away rather than right snuggled up at night time. And she is having all her naps in the sling. She wakes a lot at night time but I don't think this is anything to do with the sling.

missrose Tue 11-Oct-11 22:30:50

I've been using a sling for about 3 months for my 11mo DD. I often take her out in it specifically to get her to sleep. I also use it to get her to sleep in the evening then put her in the cot.

Up until two nights ago we were co-sleeping. There were a few really lovely times when she crawled onto me, assumed the sling position and promptly fell back asleep grin.

Last couple of nights though she has cried when I have held her and only stopped when I've put her in her cot where she has self-settled and gone to sleep. I've not done any sleep training because I can't be arsed am not convinced it works until they are actually ready.

In answer to your question, it doesn't seem to have made any difference to her evening sleep.

mamadoc Tue 11-Oct-11 22:44:57

I carry my 3 month old DS around in a sling every day and he quite often naps in it (he has to fit around school run for DD so no choice really). I pretty much don't bother putting him down for naps in the day. Despite this he sleeps 8 hrs straight in his Moses basket at night and can be put down sleepy but still awake and settle himself (a feat that DD never managed). So I think its unrelated.

NinkyNonker Wed 12-Oct-11 11:00:37

Yep, I carried DD more or less exclusively up until recently (14 months) and she sleeps fine. She is an early riser (yawn) but that is just her I think.

NellyTheElephant Wed 12-Oct-11 13:30:52

I really don't think it makes much difference. I was very lucky that all my 3 were very good sleepers (happy in their own cots and all were sleeping through the night with no feeds or wakes by 3 months). My DD1 was rarely in the sling - occasionally in a sling if I was out shopping or going for a walk but that was it as I usually used the buggy and after 6 months she was never in a sling. On the other hand DD2 and DS were almost permanently attached to me as small babies both around the house and out and about (almost never used a buggy with either of them) and even once they were walking they were up / down / up / down in the sling, regularly carried and very happy to snooze in the sling until I stopped carrying them as they approached 2 as too heavy for me and no longer any need.

Sleeping patterns of all 3 babies were very similar, so I guess sling had little or no effect. If I was at home I did always put them down for their daytime naps in the cot - but if I was out they napped in the sling. I totally loved the sling, most useful piece of baby equipment I owned and it made me happy as well as them - I loved toting them around. I'd just say be aware of sticking to bedtime routine and perhaps don't use the sling as an aid to get your little one off to sleep at night as maybe that's where the 'rod for your own back' bit comes in if they come to expect that rather than self settling - I don't know, I never gave it much thought.

InmaculadaConcepcion Wed 12-Oct-11 14:05:10

Evidence suggests that day sleep and night sleep are actually governed by different parts of the brain, which explains why a baby (like my DD!) who happily sleeps all night in her cot, will only take naps in her buggy; or why a baby who doesn't need a dummy for night sleep may still need one for day sleep...etc.

So no, it's highly unlikely slinging during the day, including for naps, will have any effect on the baby's preferences and habits when it comes to night sleep.

If any habit has to be broken, it may be that the baby prefers to take naps in the sling/on the move - but I wouldn't worry too much about that. There are ways around it and in any case, small children spend much of the first part of their lives either weaning themselves off certain habits or being weaned off them by their parents. 'Tis par for the course!

Co-sleeping is fine, providing safety guidelines are followed.

ahhyesiseeyouvepooedonyourfoot Wed 12-Oct-11 15:09:03

Thanks for all the replies folks - helpful and interesting. Clearest correlation seems to be that mummies that sling mostly co sleep, which having read up on the guidlines is a no no for us because DH smokes (only at work etc etc but still seems to be a no) but I'm hoping if she naps in the sling during the day and cot at night she'll be ok with that..trial and error I guess!

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