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Any gentle techniques for teaching a 4month old to sooth himself to sleep in his cot

(10 Posts)
WeAreThree Tue 11-Oct-16 08:24:43

Hi, I have a gorgeous 4month old boy who has always fallen asleep on the breast. For health reasons he had to be topped up with formula and 5 weeks ago he started to refuse the breast, I was devastated but try to see it as it was his own decision. The problem is now that he will only fall asleep in our arms with a lot of rocking, dimmed lights, womb sounds, etc, and a week ago he also started to refuse to go in his cot after he's fallen asleep so he just wants to sleep in our arms. This happens at naptime and also bedtime. We think the best solution is for him to learn to sooth himself to sleep in his cot without our help but we don't want to try any harsh techniques like Cry it Out or even Camp it Out. We do always try to put him in his cot when he's tired with dimmed lights, wombsounds and in desperation I even tried to give him a dummy but he hates it. He always ends up frustratedand crying and we take him out. My question is has anyone had any success with a gentle technique that's not CIO or has anyone experienced something similar and decided not to do anything about it until baby started to fall asleep on their own, if so how long did it take?

TeaBelle Tue 11-Oct-16 08:27:57

He's very young yet for any type of sleep training - most techniques aren't recommended until at least 6 months although i still that's too young personally.

Have you considered co-sleeping?

user1471421772 Tue 11-Oct-16 08:32:30

Have you tried pick up put down techniques? Basically wait until he's very sleepy in your arms but not quite asleep then put down and swaddle etc. If he stirs let him, but if he starts to cry, pick up, resettle etc then try again. Takes longer but less tears.

MyBreadIsEggy Tue 11-Oct-16 08:33:11

I agree with TeaBelle - 4 months is too young for sleep training.
My Dd wasn't happy sleeping by herself until around her first birthday. I know co-sleeping isn't for everyone, but it was right for us, and maximised the amount of sleep everyone was getting!

user1471421772 Tue 11-Oct-16 08:33:37

Although tbh my 6 month old sleeps 4 hours then is up every 45 mins all night so I'm afraid self-serving doesn't always solve sleep problems!

KateyinBaku Tue 11-Oct-16 08:46:54

I've recently discovered that my 4 mo likes loud white noise (specifically the hairdryer on the baby sleep sounds app on my phone). You could try that while lying with your son on a bed then if it works, gradually try putting him in the cot but staying near, then wean off the white noise once he's used to going to sleep in the cot. I'm about to go back to cosleeping after the first feed, though as mine goes down fine in the cot about half the time but still wakes loads and I'm really struggling with the exhaustion.

WeAreThree Tue 11-Oct-16 12:57:12

Thank you for your suggestions! I should have mentioned we're already cosleeping with him and he sleeps in next2me cosleeper so when I said 'cot' I meant his cosleeper. So we're aiming to keep him there to teach him to self soothe to sleep without our help. We have tried putting him to sleep on our bed but for some reason he has never liked it. We already play loud wombsounds which help him relax. Has anyone succeeded at getting their baby to self soothe on their own to sleep while they're lying in their cot/moses without crying or traumatic techniques? Or has anyone just not done anything and just let it pass, if so how long roughly did it take?

damnitdamnit Tue 11-Oct-16 15:27:44

Maybe encourage not sleeping on you during the day first. Start with going for a walk in the pram at nap times and then just laying in the pram when it's nap time before moving to night time settling.

Turneeps Sun 16-Oct-16 20:33:27

I think people who put baby in cot and they magically fall asleep are wizards from outerspace.
Unrealistic goal - just lower your expectations. At least that is what I have done with my 5 month old.....confused

FATEdestiny Sun 16-Oct-16 22:00:01

I think people who put baby in cot and they magically fall asleep are wizards from outerspace

lol. Dummy and swaddle from newborn usually does the trick.

gentle techniques for teaching a 4month old to sooth himself to sleep

The gentlist, calmest, no crying tool to teach independant settling is the dummy. Babies are naturally soothed by sucking. Some babies take a whole to "get" what to do with a dummy. It can take some perseverance and hard work, but goodness is it worth it.

in desperation I even tried to give him a dummy but he hates it.

Why "in desperation"? Is it middle class nose scrunching? Yeh, goid idea to lose that. Leaving a dummy too late to introduce will lower a chikds ability to gain comfort from it. But much better than resorting to distressing crying methods of sleep training after 12 months of exhaustion.

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