Preparing for Sleep Training

Our little guy is almost seven months, and we are finally hitting the stage where it’s time to sleep train. Sleeping training is not for every parent and child, and there are many different methods. We have always preferred the Ferber method. Where you check on them every few minutes and it usually takes a week.

Do your research to figure out what you prefer. And don’t be surprised if sleep training takes a couple times. It’s a lot harder than you think, and your first method of choice might not work best for your child.

And don’t be afraid to reach out for professional help. There are many trained professionals that can help guide you, and give routines, schedules and tips to get your child sleeping.

Now before you start training, I highly recommend you take the time to prepare. And here are a few things you can do…

Download an App, or get a journal to TRACK THEIR SLEEP

This is super important! I find it’s the best way to stay on top of when to nap and how much sleep they are actually getting. It will help you find that sweet spot. Because a baby getting too little or too much sleep with throw the schedule off.

I like the Huckleberry App, but I do know there is a ton to chose from! So take the time to download some and test them out before you actually start the sleep training.

Figure out proper wake times

As babies grow older, their wake windows increase. For my son at six months. It’s is recommended he naps 2-3 times a day and is awake 2-2.5 hours in between. Each baby is different, Ethan prefers three naps right now because he wakes at 6:30am. And we do like getting him to bed early so we have time to ourselves in the evening, without having to stay up too late.

Again play around with the wake windows. My oldest child was a professional sleeper. And her wake windows were shorter than normal, because that is what worked best for her. So if you notice your little one needs more or less time in between naps, it’s best to figure it out before you start the training.

Create a solid sleep routine

A routine is probably the best thing you could do for your child. And if you perfect it, by the time you are done the routine. Your child will almost be ready for sleep. My second child would be falling asleep before we got her into bed. And you have to be consistent with the routine to gain the ultimate success!

Here is our Nap Routine:

  • Darken room
  • Feed + Change Bum
  • Read 1-2 books. The last book is always the same book for every nap.
  • Sound machine on
  • Dance for 2 minutes
  • Lay down

Here is our Bedtime Routine:

  • Bath
  • Lotion + massage
  • Feed in dim room
  • Read 1-2 books.
  • Sound machine on
  • Dance for 2 minutes
  • Lay down

The key to success is consistency!

Clear your Schedule

Before you start sleep training, make sure you don’t have anything in your schedule for at least a MONTH! Yes I know, that long! But trust me. During the training you won’t want to go anywhere because you will pretty much set yourself up for failure.

And once you have success, you will want to keep it consistent for a bit for long term success. Yes your child will have nights that they wake lots because of growth spurts or teething. But they will easily get back into the routine. But if you train for a week, then go away for a weekend with family. You will most likely end up back where you started.

Before you begin, set a date and clear the calendar!

Who thought getting a baby to sleep would be so much work? The more you prepare though, the more successful you will be.

Stay tuned for more on our journey once we begin to sleep train Ethan.