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when to start sleep training?

(14 Posts)
Ellieo Tue 19-Jul-05 10:19:10

My DS is 4 weeks old and will hardly sleep at all at night (only seems to manage 30-minute naps at most). We've tried the routine of bath, massage, feed and quiet time, but it just seems to make him more hyper than ever. As soon as I put him down in his moses basket, he starts fretting and thrashing around. He's exclusively breastfed at the moment and I think he's suffering quite badly from wind, which may be affecting his sleep. Is it too early to try sleep training? Also, is it too early to put him in his own room? I'm starting to feel like a zombie and just crave a few hours sleep.

stacijc Tue 19-Jul-05 10:20:52

try putting him in the cot in ur room....still easy to get to but it may just be his moses basket he doesn't like.

or if sleep REALLY becomes a prob then youcould always latch him on an have a doze....better than no sleep!!!

Not really one for good advice tho i have a grizzler who is a rubbish feeder and sleeper loL!!

emkana Tue 19-Jul-05 10:23:29

You shouldn't start sleep training until they are AT LEAST six months.
At four weeks your baby is far too young to be expected to respond to a bedtime routine and then to settle down for sleep. All he wants is to be with you! Sit down on the sofa with him, feed and relax. Or lie down on the bed and doze/sleep while your baby feeds!
It will get better soon, honest, but at the moment he's still tiny and just needs lots of cuddles!

TracyK Tue 19-Jul-05 10:29:27

my ds was 10 weeks or so before I put him into his own room. But 4 weeks is far too young to think about sleep training - I'd say nearer a year before you could do that.
Agree with stacijc - relax and go with him for the time being. If he won't sleep its cos he's hungry/wind/cold/lonely. Feed,wind,cuddle and relax - another couple of weeks will make all the difference - I think the 6 or 7 week mark is when they smile at you and all will be wonderful! just grin and bear it for now.
But nap when he naps and bring him into bed with you and feed him and doze with him -will do no harm at all.

bakedpotato Tue 19-Jul-05 10:38:21

If he won't sleep, it could also be bcs he's knackered! How long is he staying awake for? (Sounds like forever, from your post ). Watch out for the 2 hr mark: if he's been up for longer than that, he may find it harder to settle from overtiredness. At 4 wks, you're probably best off putting him down for naps after he has been awake for an hour and a half.
Also, are you trying swaddling? It can really help with newborns. Makes them feel more secure and counterbalances the startle reflex.

Tipex Tue 19-Jul-05 16:25:09

Ellieo, I def second the swaddling advice, my DS used to thrash his arms about so much, waking himself up all the while and he also did do it worse when he was tired/overtired so its a vicious circle. When swaddled he slept much better. If you are worried about overheating you can do it in just a sheet and out just a light vest on underneath. good luck!!

QueenOfQuotes Tue 19-Jul-05 16:27:11

I woulnd't start sleep training before 6 months (that's when we started with DS1 who woke hourly for 1hour feeds, and would only fall asleep (day and night) on the breast or in the pushchair. AT night time when he went to bed - I had to go to bed as I couldn't put him down if he fell asleep in my arms.

Re the 'room' thing - DS1 was 6 months when he went into his own room..........DS2 was 6 weeks

Ellieo Wed 20-Jul-05 09:08:51

Thanks for all the advice guys. I was pretty sure he was too young to go in his own room and be sleep trained, but some friends have advised me that the sooner you start the better it is... Plus I'm a bit worried that he might get into bad habits. But presumably he's too young to get into a habit yet? Last night, I took him into bed with me all night and actually got a pretty good night's sleep (on and off) and he didn't grizzle or cry once. Maybe he just wants to be with me I did try swaddling once, but it seemed to really upset him and he thrashed even more - maybe I'll give it another go, cos I would really like him to sleep in his own bed. Stacijc, I did wonder whether he just didn't like his basket, so I will try putting the cot in our room - thanks for the tip. Feeling a bit more sane today, thanks to a little sleep last night!

emkana Wed 20-Jul-05 09:12:08

Ellieo, that's fantastic that you got a good night's sleep, and I firmly believe that you did exactly the right thing!!!! Don't think about "habits", it's faaaaaaaaaaaaaaar too early to worry about that! Just go with the flow for now, he's so little... in a couple of months time there will still be plenty of time to try him with his own cot, possibly even in his own room.

All the best!

TracyK Wed 20-Jul-05 09:14:33

agree with emanka - too young for habits. My ds slept with me on and off for the first year. I think if they can go to sleep initially on their own is the main thing. Do whatever you have to during the night to ensure the max amount of sleep.

alux Wed 20-Jul-05 09:46:02

yes, try swaddling again. Make sure it is really tight. They love it. The thrashing about is his 'moro reflex' which is why you must get it really tight.

http://www.primary-care.ch/pdf/2003/2003-38/2003-38-311.PDF

also, google 'crying up' and 'crying down' it will help you to 'listen' to lo's cries and tell whether it is a good idea to pick up or leave down.

alux Wed 20-Jul-05 09:47:52

ps: yes, that is a german page but look at the pictures at the bottom. also google dudu swaddling - how to and loads of practical info will come up.

Ellieo Wed 20-Jul-05 12:30:27

Thanks Emkana and TracyK - that's just what I want to hear! I'm going to chill out about the habit thing and just go with the flow more - got a bit paranoid after reading The Baby Whisperer and Gina Ford. I've decided to keep him in my bed at night if that's what works - at least I might get a good night's sleep! Alux, thanks for the tip about crying. I'll check it out on Google. Will see how things go tonight - I may be back asking for more advice soon!!

stacijc Wed 20-Jul-05 13:09:45

oooh chuck gina ford in the bin!!! she makes u stressed out just reading it!!! i have it but i use it to refer back to . i also have the baby whisperer one which is marginally better. shes good for helping you to recognise the sogns tho. i tried swaddling iwth my youngest but he hated it, just wanted to be held lol!

Its a mazing what some sleep does isn't it!!!

What we are doing with my ds at he mo (14weeks) is having a bedtime routine ish. he will either have a bath, change, feed, cuddle bed OR feed change cuddle bed. all for around the same time each night (between 7 and 8) we did this with our eldest and it got him used to being in bed at a certain time even if he didn't sleep. i will still go to him if he cries but i keep it low key like i would in the middle of the night.

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