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how do you teach your baby to settle themselves?

(15 Posts)
talulahbeige Sun 30-Jun-13 20:56:30

I've read lots of info about babies and sleep and they all talk about teaching the baby to self settle but non tell you how to actually do it.
so how do you do it please?

my 14 week dd will fall asleep either on the boob, in her car seat or with rocking/shsssing but I've never been able to just put her down in her bed and have her fall asleep, even when she is tired.
I know she can settle herself as she sometimes does it during the night but during the day it's all a big giggle to her.

tricksybaby200 Sun 30-Jun-13 23:03:24

I used the baby whisperer, seemed to work for us smile

PattieOfurniture Sun 30-Jun-13 23:09:43

Have you tried swaddling?

tiredpooky Tue 02-Jul-13 13:20:01

IMHO its easier when they are ready ie older, both mine were much better when they could roll and sleep on front, i wouldnt even try at 14w, get into a good bedtime routine and they will learn that sleep is expected

LandaMc Tue 02-Jul-13 16:33:06

I haven't actually done this yet (3mth old) but I've got a pretty good baby care book that says you should wait til the baby is really sleepy from feeding and then just after its stopped feeding and before its asleep, peel baby off you and put in cot. Book says mostly this will wake baby again / make it cross but occasionally it will simply blink around then go to sleep, and eventually it will always do that. Book was 'your baby week by week' or something like that.

I've not made it much past the baby wakes up again bit, but anyway this is what people mean by teaching to self soothe. I let mine feed until asleep as it makes him happy and is easy.

Some people leave baby to cry for a few minutes (controlled crying) which is very controversial (some research shows it makes baby cry more!) and my health visitor said never try this under 6months.

Hey why not phone your health visitor advice line? They should have given you a number and they love all this stuff.

CityDweller Tue 09-Jul-13 23:11:20

Bump as I have same 'issue'. It's actually not a problem at the mo, but I do feel it's taking longer and longer to feed my 12 wo to sleep at night, but if I try to put her down 'sleepy but awake' her eyes pop open and she's wide awake straight away. Right now I don't mind it taking 90 mins to put her to bed, but it may start to wear thin in a few months, for eg

jaggythistle Wed 10-Jul-13 05:24:46

From what I've read its more of a developmental thing than a skill and babies figure it out at different times.

You can help with a familiar pattern at sleep time, but its pretty normal to feed to sleep for months.

I find it much less effort than any kind of sleep training!

Gobbolinothewitchscat Wed 10-Jul-13 05:40:51

I agree that it depends on the baby, but I did a few things which I think helped.

As long as he wasn't crying, I always put DS in his Moses basket awake for sleeps so he got used to nodding off with me there. That wasn't a hard and fast rule, so sometimes I had to rock him to sleep and sometimes he fell asleep whilst I was feeding him - especially at night. However, I tried not to get into a routine of always rocking him to sleep or anything else which initiated sleep. In terms of crying, I started to realise that DS had a "tired" cry - particularly at night. This isn't like the cry he doors when he's hungry etc (rising in pitch), it's more like am intermittent moan that ends after a few minutes when he falls asleep. I used to grab him out of the Moses basket when he made a sound - which tired him further as he was just about to go to sleep! . However, at around 6 weeks we realised what it was and now leave him. Any increase in cries or if he is disstressed we go and get him though.

I also took the Moses basket with me wherever I was in the house and crashed and banged around as usual so he was used to sleeping in noise. I also went out a fair bit so he got used to sleeping in the car, in the pram etc.

Hope this helps a bit!

lotsofcheese Wed 10-Jul-13 05:57:20

Another one recommending the Baby Whisperer "Put Down Pick Up" technique - I just set aside a day to implement it with DS - initially it took 45 mins to self-settle for the first nap & by the end of the day he had it sorted.

mrscog Wed 10-Jul-13 05:57:45

By accident with the tiniest bit of unplanned CC! One day when DS was about 18wks we were having one of those mornings where it's 11.30 and you realise you still haven't brushed your teeth! I decided that he'd have to just go in his cot for 3 mins (my toothbrush has a timer) even if he cried as I couldn't stand it being so late in the morning with in brushed teeth. I put him in (not even with a blanket or anything as it wasn't sleeptime, I just needed to contain him) he cried for about a minute and a half then stopped. When I went back in he was fast asleep! Since then he's been able to drop off himself - up to 2-3 mins if moany crying, which I actually think is his 'wind down' then he sleeps (80% of time).

I hate CC but I think you have to try and distinguish between upset crying and wind down moaning a bit. I've never left him actually upset.

Sunnysummer Wed 10-Jul-13 06:20:09

It also depends a lot on the baby - lots of people with multiple DCs will tell you how their first one was perfect and they thought they'd got parenting sorted out, then their DC2 turned out to be a total sleep refuser (or vIce versa). That said, the Baby Whisperer is pretty good!

speedyboots Wed 10-Jul-13 06:32:20

lotsofcheese how old was your DS when you did that?
Ps your username is upsetting me - can't eat cheese as it gives ebf DS a stomachache and stops him sleeping if I do. I love cheese sad

Gobbolinothewitchscat Wed 10-Jul-13 08:19:45

Yes - totally agree with the wind down crying! DS (7 months) is very low maintenance but absolutely needs to be in bed for 7pm or can get very upset very quickly.

When we put him in his sleeping bag, he often starts the moany crying - it's like a combination if relief and a stress relief. Only goes on for a few minutes

lotsofcheese Wed 10-Jul-13 09:51:13

Sorry to be taunting you with my username! wink

We started PUPD at 2-3 months as DS was dependant on being fed/held/rocked to sleep & was becoming agitated when self-settling. We also used a dummy.

speedyboots Wed 10-Jul-13 14:42:59


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