Talk with your doctor about whether or not they believe that baby is ready to self soothe. Pro tip: Ask your doctor how long they believe that your baby can go without a feed at night, so you can respond appropriately using our Wink-a-Sleep method found in the online 5-18M Baby Sleep Training class.
You’ll want a cool, dark room, with white noise running continuously in order to give baby the ideal sleep environment to self soothe. Invest in our favorite blackout shades under $50, and make sure you grab our recommended white noise machine here. Ideally, the same area will exist for naps as well.
Children sleep best while dressed in one additional layer then an adult would be comfortable in. With a room that’s between 68-70 degrees, you could try a onesie inside of a sleep sack, or under the swaddle. For babies with sensitive skin, it’s best to dress them in organic clothing while learning to self soothe to reduce chances of discomfort.
So many clients come to me looking for help with a baby that can’t self soothe. Sometimes this is due to baby being too tired, or not tired enough when they are put down in the crib. To get the appropriate wake windows for your baby, take this free quiz for a free schedule you can start using today!
Bedtime routines can be done in 30-60 minutes, with the goal of baby being asleep within 15 minutes of the correct wake window. Ideas might be to offer a warm bath, followed by a massage with lotion, pajamas, and a last feed (or book reading for older babies). By creating a calm routine that’s repeated nightly, baby is likely more happy to self soothe on their own.
Begin offering baby a feed before the lights go out, instead of allowing to fall completely asleep in your arms while feeding, causing them to be unable to self soothe on their own. Most children will happily welcome a feed earlier in the bedtime routine process, and enjoy some light rocking while still experiencing some relaxation in your arms with a full belly.
This can be so hard to do without help— we get it! If baby falls asleep while nursing or while in a parent’s arms (and then transferred to the crib while completely asleep), it’s understandable why they might call out for you a few hours into the night to help them fall back asleep. Wherever baby falls asleep, is where they expect to still be once they pass through any sleep cycle, that repeats every 1-3 hours at night. While teaching baby to self soothe, you’ll want to make sure they are waking up at night in the same place they fell asleep to begin with for the fastest results.