Baby: sleep training


As I mentioned, I decided to sleep train Sofia, mainly to wean her from the pacifier, the swaddle and the swing because she started to roll over and had 2 crappy nights. I knew we had to do this sooner or later but since she has been always a good sleeper and only wakes up once to eat, I didn’t feel the need therefore delayed the inevitable. We started on 4/18; I had a 3-day weekend so I was prepared to not-sleep and fight-hard for 3 nights.

The goal: wean her from the pacifier, sleep without swaddling, sleep always in the crib, no more naps or early morning sleep in the swing.

The method: Ferber method. let her cry, comfort check every 5, 10 min for 30 sec to 1 min.

Day 1: after bath and nursing, I put her down without anything but a sleep sack. Not surprisingly, she started complaining. She rolls back and force, raises her head confused not knowing what to do, not knowing how to fall sleep. I let her cry for 10 min, and then went in, comfort her by padding her back and walked out. She started crying again. And then silence. I checked the monitor and found her asleep face down 😯

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Then she woke up at 9pm, cried for 10 min (didn’t check her) and fell asleep.

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then woke up again at 4am. I let her cry, 2 checks and still crying by 5am. I guess by then she was crying for food so I fed her. Put her down and walked away. 5:30 asleep

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6:05 awake, no cry and fell asleep.

7 am: woke up for the day. No cry just playing alone until 7:20 when I pick her up. She greed me with a big smile! 🙂

She’s definitely a fast learner to fall asleep by her own. 🙂 Good girl.

Day 2: put her down at 7:25 pm. She fell asleep at 7:35 with no crying at all. She only woke up at 3:50 am, after I feed her so slept until 7:05.

Day 3: due to crappy nap during the day, she woke up at 9, 10, 12:40, 3:40, 4:40 and 7. I was tired the next day. 😦

Day 4: down at 7:30 pm, no crying, asleep by 7:45pm. Woke up at 5:20 am, ate and went back to sleep.

….

One week later: she’s down by 7:30 pm as latest, fuss 5 min max if at all, asleep before 8pm. She still wakes up early morning for a feed. It could be anywhere from 4-6:30am. I guess if she doesn’t sleep through that window of time, she is too hungry to go back to sleep. So, mom and I agree that we’d feed her if she wakes up after 4am. I’m sure she’ll wean that feed eventually.

As you can see, night sleep training was really easy for us. I guess it was because she was ready to do the transition. All the 3 things we wanted to wean her from are successfully removed.

HOWEVER, naps are another story. We’re still fighting it these days. Somedays she’d fell asleep without fuss, other times she’d cry for 1+ hours. I think sleep training naps might not work for her because if she’s not ready for nap, no matter how long I let her cry, she’d not stop crying and she’d not sleep. So, instead of letting her learn to fall sleep, the learning is the opposite, it’s for us to learn to read her signals to be ready to sleep. I think my mom is starting to get it. When she looks ready to take a nap, mom would put her in the crib, she’d play for a bit and fall asleep without much fuss. Unfortunately the length of her naps are not consistent, it could be 30 min, 45 min or 2 hours. We’re still learning, both Sofia and us. Few things that we’ve learned so far:

  • 2-3-4: her awake time has lengthened. In a good day, she’d take her first nap after 2 hrs of awake time, then second nap after 3 hrs, bed time after 4 hrs.
  • early bedtime: if she had a bed nap day (like only 1 or 2 30 min naps), I’d try to put her down before 7pm so she’d take a full feed, otherwise she’d fall asleep while nursing and then wake up an hour later.
  • 5 min wait: sometimes when she wakes up after 45 min, she’d cry really hard, terrifying hard. If I wait 5 min, half of the time she’d fall asleep again. She’s probably catching up the next sleep cycle.
  • 1 hr break: after an hour of nap attempt is failed, I give up. I pick her up, let her play or eat, and then try again an hour later. She usually falls asleep without much fuss this time.

So, that’s all for now. I’d report back in few weeks. 😉

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1 Comment

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One response to “Baby: sleep training

  1. Sofia is a good night time sleeper! Glad that the sleep training worked so fast. It sure can be hard to function when sleep deprived…

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