So you’ve broken your little one’s dependency on props, you’ve established a consistent, predictable bedtime routine, and baby’s falling asleep like a superstar at bedtime. So why is she waking up two or three times in the middle of the night and fussing until someone comes into the room to settle her?
Don’t worry. You’re about 90% of the way there. Your baby has some really solid sleep skills and the majority of the hard work is behind her. Today, I have two tips that should push you and your little one over the finish line and get you both sleeping straight through the night.Rather read than watch? Click here.
One of the most common questions that I get asked is why is my child waking in the night?
Well, there’s a couple of reasons for this and usually the question shows up with I think she’s falling asleep independently at bedtime or she’s doing really well at bedtime but now she’s still waking in the middle of the night.
So those nighttime wake-ups become a real pain point for a lot of parents. I wanna give you basically two reasons why they are showing up for you.
One is that your baby is too sleepy or already asleep when you put them to bed. If you’ve worked through the Sleep Sense program, you know already that you really need to break the prop association in order for a child to start sleeping well.
But here’s a common mistake people make when they’re working on the program is that their child is still sleepy at bedtime. So they do the routine, usually when they get to the last step there’s some feeding involved or rocking involved and your baby is, like, heavy blinking or looking drowsy or closing their eyes and you think, okay, time to transition.
They go into the crib, they take a minute or two and they fall asleep and you’ve think you’ve done it, right? And you have, you’ve done some great work. I don’t wanna discount it but for some babies if you help them get most of the way to sleep when they have a wake-up in the middle of the night, they may need you to come help them again, right?
So they’re kinda doing it themselves but not really. And that can cause frequent, consistent nighttime wake-ups. So that’s the first thing to look at. Ask yourself, is she wide awake when she goes into that crib at bedtime? And if the answer is no, then that is why you’re having nighttime wake-ups.
The second reason why you might be having them is because you do something different, right? At bedtime she uses her own skills, she falls asleep wonderfully, at the three o’clock wake-up, though, I feed her or I bring her to bed with me or I rock her.
So, the way you show up at three o’clock is very different from the way you show up at bedtime and she may be confused. I don’t know what happens when I wake up in the night. Sometimes nothing, right? Sometimes I get fed. Sometimes she comes in and holds me. And they get all confused about what their skill set is.
So, if that’s the case you’re gonna have to have a hard look at what you’re doing in the middle of the night. It’s usually feeding still. Now, you should check with your doctor. You wanna make sure she is appropriate weight and a good a age and healthy before you make these decisions but if you’re still offering a middle-of-the-night feed to your nine month old, let’s say, then it’s probably just a habitual nighttime wake-up for the feed.
It’s not that they need the calories. It’s just a habit. Hey, I wake up at 3 a.m., I have this lovely meal, I get a little cuddle time with my mom, it’s perfectly fine. Right? It’s not necessary but it’s a habit. And if that feels like you, then the only way to stop this is to break that habit.
The good news is because she’s got good sleep skills at bedtime, this only takes a few nights, right? It’s just a matter of saying, hey, you know what, that’s not showing up anymore for you. Okay, I’ve got my own skills. I’ll figure it out on my own and it’s gone. Those are the only two reasons why you’re still having night wakings.
Thanks so much for watching today. Sleep well.
If your baby, infant or toddler is having trouble sleeping through the night, help is just a click away! The Sleep Sense Program has helped over 57,00 parents to get their kids sleeping 11-12 hours through the night AND taking long, restful naps during the day. If you’re ready to get started today – I’m looking forward to helping you!
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