Little Ones sleep programmes(24 Posts)
Currently pregnant with my first and have been thinking about sleep. I'm not a fan of strict routines with tiny babies and originally planned to just go with the flow/be baby led. But I have friends who are still breastfeeding on demand and co-sleeping with their 1 year olds. Nothing wrong with this if it suits mum and baby, each to their own. But I think by this stage, I'd like a bit of routine and I'm hoping to avoid co-sleeping of possible (for safety reasons). I'm wondering if there are certain things I can do from the beginning to encourage a good sleep pattern.
So I'm looking for something in between. Something that will allow me to respond to my baby's needs without a strict routine, while doing what I can to support them in naturally falling into some sort of pattern.
I've stumbled across the Little Ones Facebook page and they sound like a fairly happy medium - understanding and exploring the reasons for sleep patterns, natural development in line with age and no harsh CIO methods. But it could all just be clever advertising. Has anyone used their programmes?
No idea about that specific company and assuming this is your first child, everything you think/thought your knew may well change over this coming year.
With regards to:
I'm wondering if there are certain things I can do from the beginning to encourage a good sleep pattern
Use a swaddle from birth and a dummy from a few weeks old - the simplest no crying sleep solutions.
Ensure your baby is well fed, seeking early help if needed with breastfeeding or feeding frequently if bottle feeding. A hungry baby will never sleep well.
Know several winding techniques, inadequate winding causes pain and this disturbed sleep.
Put baby down to sleep. A well fed, well winded healthy newborn who is swaddled with a dummy should sleep passively most of the time.
A newborn shouldn't be spending very long awake. Wake, feed, wind, check nappy, back to sleep. No 'playing' necessary.
Thank you for the tips, gratefully received.
Yes, this is my first and I realise that I can't know what my baby will be like and very little will likely go to plan! I'm fully expecting to learn as I go, just wanted an idea of a strategy to start me off.
I certainly wish I'd known more how helpful swaddling could be. By the time I'd figured it out, my little one hated them!
I thought I might try a GroSnug, then if baby hates being swaddled, I can still use it as a sleeping bag. Heard a few things about them being too tight around the neck though.
Also, is anyone able to tell me about or point me towards a good resource to read about realistic expectations for sleeping and breastfeeding. It seems that breastfed babies awake more often in the night for feeding (and I understand that night feeds are important for building supply) but I'd like to know more about the reasons why, and also what age this would be expected to go on until, to help prepare myself mentally for what the first year might be like.
I found the kellymom website really helpful.
Also if you are on Facebook there are 'breastfeeding mums' groups for lots of areas and you'll probably find out about real life groups too which can be useful.
Kellymom and milk meg at the two biggest known breastfeeding bloggers.
Watching the sleep and feeding boards on Mumsnet will help too. And as pp said, there are various Facebook groups.
My EBF fed LO frequently through the night until 9 months old. He went through periods of sleeping for up to 7hrs at a stretch at 2-4 months.
Then a sleep regression which is always growth related meant he would sleep less between feeds. At 9 months when he was eating really well and having 3/4 big breast feeds in the day we decided to night wean as he was waking every hour or two to feed back to sleep.
Lots of people would disagree with that choice but after three nights of being settled with rocking and shushing and being put back in his cot he slept through. He also ate even more during the day and took more breast milk to.
We've had regressions since and lots of sleep related angst that is totally normal but it always changes. He's a champion sleeper now at 18months he'll sleep 13/14hrs at night. You will not sleep much for the first few months and that is totally normal. Hard but normal. Some babies are freaky and sleep great from a young age but it's not the norm.
@Lemondrop99 we used a grosnug from 5 or 6 weeks. They are great! I'd definitely recommend them.
On breastfeeding and sleeping, all babies are different. Our baby is EBF and has been doing 6-8 hour stretches at night from about 6 weeks. Formula doesn't guarantee a better night. Nothing wrong with using it but don't do it just to get longer sleep stretches!
My DC1 aged 3 still wakes at night, my DC2 aged 5 months is a thumb sucker and slept through the night from 9 weeks. I had the same approach of BF on demand with both, and had both in the room with me from birth. I found that their sleep needs and patterns were very clear and emerged naturally by watching their cues. Also that they changed from month to month so I have had to try different techniques to respond to their changing stage of development, teething etc.
Thanks all. Really interesting to hear the differences, and that breast feeding on demand doesn't necessarily mean night waking for years. I have the NCT breastfeeding session in a few weeks, so hoping I'll feel a bit more prepared after that.
Just trying to get my 10wk this old into a routine as his preferred bedtime is midnight (and with a toddler too we can’t carry on with that timing). I can just about stretch his feeds to 3hrs, he can only stay awake between 1-1.5 he’s after he gets up but the issue we have is that when he does nap he can’t do more than 40mins and then once he’s slept for 40mins no amount of resettling will get him back down! So our cycles are ending up very short! Does anyone have any advise for how you adapt a 3hr routine if they wake early from naps?
@katetsir just came across your comment - I’m having the same issue with my almost 10 week old waking from naps at 30-40 minutes - did you find a technique that worked?
Any comments about living in Barnet? Secondary schools, pre schools, gym, etc?
Sorry to say I haven’t - my lo is now 24wks and still only does 40min naps! However, the one thing that dramatically improved our bedtimes was teaching him to self settle (including removing the dummy) and for most children I think this is usually enough for them to sleep longer than 40mins, unfortunately I think my lo just doesn’t need any more than that! He wakes happy and stays that way for a good few hours after his nap on just 40mins.
Honestly, I wouldn’t worry about any of this untill your baby comes. All babies are so different and you will probably find that what you think you want, and everything you know will change dramatically. Lack of sleep can make you do things you never thought you’d do, and that’s okay.
In terms of BF, again, all babies are different. I know someone who’s EBF baby slept through at 12 weeks and always has, where as some babies continue to wake frequently well in to toddlerhood. Co sleeping was the single best tool for us to tackle the early days when feeding was constant and very frequent. We all got more sleep and newborn night snuggles are the best thing ever. If you do is sensibly and using common sense it’s perfectly fine and very natural.
I used little ones when my DS was 3 months old because I was so tired. IMO it’s a very strict routine and there is strong focus of naps in the cot which is an issue because 1) ALOT of young babies won’t sleep in cots during the day and 2)it can be restrictive for getting out and about. Looking back it was a total waste as it was mostly advice you can get on here, from other mums and generally common sense. Also, looking back I think I was very naive to think that it could be one guide to fit all babies, as they are all so different. But, I was very very very tired at the time and was willing to try anything 😂
Oh dear @katetsir! Thanks for getting back to me though! Any tips on how you tonight him to self settle?
A good source of knowing what normal baby sleep looks like is the gentle sleep book by Sarah Ockwell-Smith.
He’s my second and I felt comfortable using a type of ‘crying it out’. After making sure he was fed,dry and had a cuddle we left him for 2mins then would go in and cuddle to calm then put him back down, then left for 4mins, in cuddle to calm and then out for 6mins etc. The first day was tough but we never made it past the 8mins and by the first bedtime he could self-settle without a dummy. Instant improvement from the very first night. Naps took a few more days to consistently crack but so worth it.
Thanks @katetsir. Those intervals sound manageable! I may have to give this a try as continuously going in to pop the dummy back into his mouth means that settling him can take up to an hour!
Yes we were exactly the same - nap settles with dummies were really quick but night time settles literally took hours and hours. The day we binned the dummy night time settles immediately improved and now he just babbles (he doesn’t cry unless completely over tired) for up to about 10mins and then he’s gone
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now »
Already registered? Log in with:
Please login first.