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Breaking sleep associations - advice?

(12 Posts)
kimmy726 Tue 23-Aug-16 22:48:17

DD is 5.5months old and is fed and rocked to sleep (my own fault I know). I'd like to break those associations so I can put her down to sleep and self settle, but I'm. It sure how to start doing this! From some research I've done she's at a good age to do 'sleep training'- but I'm not a fan of letting her cry it out, she will just vomit and get even more angry.
Any advice would be appreciated smile

Also, she has silent reflux so sleeps on her tummy (we have a sensor monitor), she is still in our room (we have no space for her until our house is ready, in about a month).
Thanks X

Coconut0il Tue 23-Aug-16 23:16:43

No real advice as I'm still feeding DS2 to sleep and he's almost 1.
With DS1 I stopped bf at about 18 months so instead of bf to sleep we had a story and a cuddle and I would sing to him. I'd never even heard of self settling then ( 13 years ago!) He just did it in his own time. I really believe self settling is developmental, like crawling or walking, some babies just take longer to do it.

FATEdestiny Wed 24-Aug-16 15:10:06

A dummy may be an independent alternate to feeding to sleep

Mypoorhat Wed 24-Aug-16 15:18:57

Will she take a bottle? I think I gradually got my daughter to break the breastfeeding to sleep association by giving her a bottle of expressed milk at bed time, and holding her, and then gradually moved to putting her down sleepy but vaguely awake.

It took ages for her to self settle properly, and we did more intensive 'sleep training' later. As Coconut 0il says, Ijust think she wasn't ready to self settle til later, and it was easier to encourage her once she was.

But moving to a bed time bottle helped break the hour(s) long comfort breastfeeding at around that age.

Diddlydokey Wed 24-Aug-16 15:19:28

If it works, I wouldn't worry for the time being. If it doesn't work, for whatever reason (excessive night waking, taking a long time to get to sleep) you can try:

Shhh-pat - start by stopping rocking and feeding to sleep and just hold her stood still and making a long slow shhh with a slow pat on her bum. Then progress to putting her down in the cot and doing the same, patting and shhhing and then move on to just patting or shhhing and then just putting her down. It is quite gradual.

Pick up, put down - so put her down, pick her up when she is unsettled, resettle her and then put back down again and repeat.

Gradual withdrawal - sitting next to her on a chair until she falls asleep. She can see you're there but you don't try to resettle her. Edge the chair further and further away until you're out of the door.

Controlled crying - put her down awake and leave for intervals. At her age, I'd do 1 minute, then 2, then 5 until she falls asleep. You're not aiming to resettle when you go back in, just a quick reassure that you're still there but then back out again in less than a minute.


fluffikins Wed 24-Aug-16 16:17:52

I'd leave it 6 months. I don't understand the obsession with 'self settling'.

Diddlydokey Wed 24-Aug-16 17:40:54

Fluffi lots of babies wake very often, up to every 45 minutes and self settling helps a lot of them, albeit not all, sleep in bigger chunks.

BertrandRussell Wed 24-Aug-16 17:44:33

Most controlled crying advocates say they should be 12 months.

How long does she sleep now?

kimmy726 Wed 24-Aug-16 19:12:11

Fate - she wouldn't take a dummy till literally a few nights ago. I give it when she's finished her bottle but still wants suckling comfort.

Bert - she varies hugely in her sleep. When she barely naps we get a good 6-8 hours in one chunk, Monday night she cried till 930 and slept till 8am right through. Last night she had two naps, morning nap was 40 mins and late afternoon 2 hours! She would fall into a deep sleep on my chest/shoulder then I'd put her down but after a minute or two shed wake up! So in bed with me for a few hours (I dozed off too) and she slept 230-5 in her crib, till she did a massive poo then settled easily and slept 6-8. confused

I'd like to get her to self settle so we all get some sleep, as she's super cranky and unsettled when she has a crap night like last night. Diddly - thank tou for the tips! I'll look into it and hopefully we find one that will help us. Xx

fluffikins Thu 25-Aug-16 07:42:29

Yeah diddly,my dd did and still wakes 2-3 times a night at 15 months. But I think part of parenting is meeting those needs. I have a demanding job and I'm tired but this won't last forever

BertrandRussell Thu 25-Aug-16 07:45:01

Honestly? That sounds pretty good for her age. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.........

Diddlydokey Thu 25-Aug-16 08:27:28

That's your choice fluffi but there are different ways of parenting, including how to deal with infant sleep.

Personally, I struggled with the sleep ddeprivation as it made me feel quite low. It is pointless dealing with excessive night waking if it renders you useless for parenting and functioning with everything else in the day. I am glad that you cope well.

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