Every other parent has this question in mind, how to start sleep training 6 month old ? You can train your baby to fall asleep and stay asleep on their own by using sleep training. It’s easier than you thought, isn’t it?
At six months of age, a child undergoes rapid development. You probably noticed your baby sitting up, crawling, and getting on hands and knees within the last few weeks.
You can probably hear her babbling, laughing, and smiling throughout the day. Compared to just a few months ago, she may seem like an entirely new baby.
All these changes and newly-found abilities might seem normal, but they can be quite an adjustment for your little one.
How To Start Sleep Training For A 6-Month Old Baby?
Start by taking her into a relaxing bath with dimmed lights or wipe down her face with a warm washcloth. Once she is dressed in her pajamas, you can sit down and sing her lullabies or read a book to her, just before you put her to sleep. Let your baby fall asleep in the crib awake by putting her down so she can do it herself.
This article describes how to start sleep training for a 6-month old baby for a good night’s sleep for all.
What Is Sleep Training?
The sleep-training process teaches your baby how to fall asleep on their own. In other words, the baby is put down for bed fully awake—no rocking, swaying, cuddling, nursing, or shushing is needed.
Additionally, sleep training helps the baby get back to sleep when she wakes up during the night (even as an adult, waking up at night is a normal part of the sleep cycle).
When To Start Sleep Training?
Sleep training should begin between 4 and 6 months of age, according to experts. Since babies in this age range are physically capable of sleeping for six to eight hours without food but aren’t quite old enough for the comfort you provide to become a sleep association, this is a sweet spot for parents.
Sleep Training Methods For A 6-Month-Old Baby
Several sleep training methods work for most families, but some parents find that a combination of these methods works best:
- Cry It Out (CIO)
Cry it out, also known as the “extinction” method of sleep training, involves leaving the baby on her own to cry until she goes to sleep without assistance or comfort from you.
As long as you have ensured your baby has a full stomach before going to bed, and the environment is a safe one, you won’t enter her room until the next morning when she gets up or when it’s time for her to eat.
You may consider CIO to be harsh, but it is harder on you than on your child. Your baby will eventually be able to fall asleep on her own if you stay consistent (that’s the key!). Three to four nights should be enough for this to happen.
- Ferber Method (Also Known As “Check And Console”)
Fading Method sleep coaching involves “fading out” (FIO) making no tears or crying (or very little crying).
The Fading method involves soothing your baby continuously until they fall asleep (for instance, by rocking or by feeding).
With time, however, you gradually do less and less of the ‘work’ and your baby increasingly does it on his or her own. You will eventually find that your baby sleeps independently.
As an example, if you usually rock your baby to sleep completely, try to reduce the duration of your rocking sessions to only a few minutes whenever you do it before bedtime.
In some cases, this technique takes some patience on the part of the parents, but it’s great for families who are trying to minimize crying as much as possible.
- Bedtime Fading Method
If your baby cries long before falling asleep, why is that so? If you want her to go to bed at your desired time, her body might not be ready to sleep.
Bedtime fading can control her circadian rhythms, which may lead to a more comfortable bedtime for her. You can do it this way.
- Take note of your baby’s sleep cues (eye rubbing, yawning, turning away from lights or sounds, fussiness).
- Put her to sleep when she seems tired.
- When she is crying a lot, it might be best to take her out of the crib for a short time (say, for half an hour) and then try again.
- You can repeat this process after a few nights, but adjust the bedtime by 15 minutes earlier.
- In 15-minute increments, gradually shift the time you go to bed until it meets your preferences.
Sleep training strategies in which a parent gradually reduces their presence in the baby’s room while she sleeps are called bedtime fading.
- Pick Up, Put Down Method (PUPD)
Another method for gently training a child to sleep is the Pick-Up-Put-Down Method.
In the PUPD method, you pick your baby up and comfort him or her as he or she cries in the crib or bassinet when it is time to sleep. In this way, you repeat the cycle until your baby is finally asleep in their crib.
Depending on the age of your baby, Pick-Up-Put-Down is another method that requires some patience. In addition, it will not be effective for all babies.
Picking up and putting down a baby can cause some babies to become frustrated and work up, instead of relaxing.
- Chair Method
You (and your baby) may feel more comfortable with this method than cry-it-out or Ferber for older babies.
While your child is in her crib, sit in a chair next to her without picking her up until she falls asleep. Every night, move the chair closer to the door.
Once this happens, your baby should be able to fall asleep without you being around. If a baby cannot put you out of mind until you are out of sight, this method won’t work.
However, know that this technique may lead to more tears for some babies, even for some families that find it right for them.
Your baby may be startled and upset when she awakes if you aren’t there when she falls asleep in your room.
The above 5 methods can help you get your answer of how to start sleep training 6 month old right?
Sleep Training Tips For 6-Month-Old
You need practice and patience for sleep training no matter how you do it. The following tips can help you and your baby adjust to the change. Keep these things in mind:
- Establish a bedtime routine. You can help transition your baby from awake time to sleep time by following a consistent 30- to 45-minute sleep routine. Make sure to schedule her to breastfeed or bottle-feed before bath or books so that you can put her to bed while she’s still awake.
- Understand when your child is tired. Watch for the same types of sleep signs every night like yawning, eye rubbing, and crankiness. You must put your child to bed when she is sleepy but not overtired, as overtired babies have a hard time falling asleep and may wake up during the night.
- The time is right. You must not interfere with the baby’s sleep when she has experienced recent changes in her life (a move, a new nanny, an ear infection, travel). Before beginning sleep training, let things settle down.
- Lay the baby down awake. You can’t teach your baby sleep training if you rock her before transferring her to the crib. Sleep training begins with teaching your baby to fall asleep on her own.
- Take your time responding. When the baby starts crying, don’t rush in. In the night, babies cry, make a lot of noise, and then fall asleep by themselves. Reacting to every little sound or cry may awaken a sleeping infant or make it more difficult for her to self-soothe.
The Bottom Line
Be kind to yourself if things aren’t always perfect when it comes to sleep training. It may sometimes be difficult for your baby to fall asleep and stay asleep.
Indeed, some methods aren’t going to work for your little (or for you), but there are plenty to try. Just be patient and consistent – and remember to show your little some tender love!
How Long Do You Let A Baby Cry It Out?
Do not leave your baby crying for too long. Experts recommend only letting your baby cry for a minute or two at first and then gradually increasing their length to a maximum of 15 minutes if you do choose to use this method.
When To Let Babies Cry To Sleep?
Most doctors believe that the two-month-old child can easily be taught to sleep through the night. According to most pediatricians, the recommended age is 4 to 6 months. Sleep experts say it’s not harmful to let babies cry longer than an hour or two at night, even though they won’t cry that long.
How Many Nights Does The Ferber Method Take?
It is natural for each baby to respond differently to sleep training and adjust to the new bedtime routine more quickly than others. It is normal to expect the crying to decrease over the next three nights or so.
Why Is My Almost 6-Month Old Baby Not Sleeping?
Being a new parent means having to deal with disruptions at nighttime. There are numerous reasons why a baby might not sleep – such as illness, teething, developmental milestones, or changes in routine – so an occasional sleep problem is not a concern.