February 05, 2007,
N.L. asks from Papillion, NE on January 23, 2007
6 Week Old Sleeping in Crib
My daughter is 6 weeks old and I am having trouble getting her to sleep in the bassinet or crib at night. She seems to sleep best with my husband and me. Having her in our bed eliminates any alone time for us. I will rock her to sleep and then place her in the bassinet or crib but she wakes within 30 mins. I have tried to just leave her in there when she cries just put the pacifier back in her mouth but she seems to never really fall back into deep sleep and wakes up crying off and on...I know people have said to let her cry it out but is she too young to do that? And how long do I let her cry for? Any advice will be appreciated.
So What Happened?™
Thanks to all of your suggestions. She has been sleeping in her crib for nearly two weeks now..of course she has some nights when she will end up in our room. I know as she gets older this should get a little easier.
T.E. answers from Omaha on January 24, 2007
Try warming up the bassinet with a heating pad. After the bed and blankets is nice in warm remove the heating pad and lay her down in the nice warm bed. She will think that she is still in your arms or your bed because it is nice and warm. This is what my mom did with me and i also use this method on my own children and it works great.
1 mom found this helpful
C.H. answers from Omaha on January 24, 2007
Its gets better...trust me. My son was the exact same way. One thing that helped me get my son to sleep better in his crib was not letting him sleep with me for extended periods of time...When he would wake up at night I would go to his room and hold and rock him and let him know that I was right there. When he would fall back asleep I would tell him that I would be right back if he needed me and kiss and put him back in bed...I know it gets rough at night when you need some sleep but it does get better. She will learn that you are always going to be right there for her and it will get easier for her to sleep in her own bed.
E.M. answers from Omaha on January 24, 2007
Your 6 week old needs you. Do not let her cry it out. Remember she is just starging to learn to trusst you and feel secure (like she was in the womb)-- so, don't force her to cry it out.
Have you considered ruling out other causes of her crying (wet, hungry, etc.)? Don't worry that she is not yet comfortable in her bassinet or crib. That may take a while. IF you are comfortable cosleeping (as it seems you mostly are) then do what works for her. You and your husband will have 'alone time' once you have made her more comfortable and she knows she can trust you.
T.P. answers from Omaha on January 24, 2007
my first, son, was like that. and his bassinet was right next to my side of the bed. he slept with us till he was about 3 months, then we put him in the crib. and at that point we had to let him do the 5 min crying, check on him, etc, like was described in the other post. he is the best sleeper now.. except when he is scared or something.
we(my husband and i) figured that for this short time, our focus is on our son and any 'alone time' or intimate time we may be missing is nothing compared to the security our son will get from knowing we are there. and building that relationship.
now my daughter had to sleep in her swing because she had reflex issues and would cry and wake up when laid down in her crib. which was also in our room when she came home. after getting past the reflux she is an awesome sleeper, even better than her brother was.
your daughter is only 6 weeks and i agree too young to cry it out as described, just yet. she is just learning where you are or that you will be there when she awakes.
swaddling helped my son. i would even lay my hand in his bassinet on him so he would feel me there.
if you co sleep, use one of those devices that are made for cosleeping. ya hear so many horror stories of infants passing away from sudden infant death sindrome,,and plenty are instances of co sleeping unsafely.
good luck,, it will get easier and better. this 'season' will pass:-)
M.B. answers from Omaha on January 24, 2007
Try letting her cry for 5 minutes, then go in and check on her to make sure there is nothing physically wrong (wet diaper, etc.). If there's nothing wrong, just tell her you love her and leave. Don't pick her up. Let her cry for another 10 minutes before you go back in. If she keep this up for 30 minutes, try rocking her then putting her back in her crib. Are you swaddling her? We swaddled our son and we never have had a problem getting him to sleep in his crib. In fact, the only place he'll actually go to sleep is his crib (or his car seat, if he's really pooped while we're driving). But my son has been Mr. Independent from day one, so it could just be his temperment. She is not too young to cry it out, it teaches her to self soothe, plus crying actually is good for babies, it helps strengthen their lungs and circulatory system (even if it hurts our ears!). You will just have to learn her cries to tell when she is not calming down and needs attention, vs. hunger, vs. wet/dirty diaper vs. tired, and at 6 weeks, those cries all kind of sound the same (at least they did to me!). Also, I know some people are really against this, but we have always put a stuffed animal in our son's crib with him when he went to sleep, he was given a little bear that plays a soft lullaby and that really helped. He also liked this music thing that we had that attached to the crib that had sounds that were supposed to be like inside the womb, and also had a night light. Maybe some soothing sounds and a night light would help. I hope this helps! I know it's frustrating, hang in there!
C.N. answers from Omaha on January 24, 2007
6 weeks is too young for her to cry it out. They are still learning to trust you and need you to respond to every cry. When she is about 6 mos old you can start the "ferberizing" the cry it out if you wish. I have a 7 month old and I stil refuse to make her cry it out. I did alot of searching on the web of different methods and really have found that you have to find your way to get her down. I still have problems with her waking 30 min or so after I out her down but I go back in quietly, close my eyes and rest my hand on her, my head on the crib rail and put her binky in her mouth. I just pat her bottom or back until she dozes back off. I usually put her on her side with rolls so she souldn't roll onto her tummy. That seemed to mimic me still holding her best. Sometimes I take her out and rock her because she is so upset. My husband and I found that we just made alone time whenever we could. If she fell asleep in the swing or papasan chair we took advantage of it. Asure yourself and your husband that this will pass eventually. This first year is rather short compared to the length of her life. I just remind myself that someday I won't be rocking her to sleep because she'll want me to put her down!! PS- I like Dr sears website. It is askdrsears.com. He is mostly a cosleeper advocate. Check him out. Good luck!
J.O. answers from Omaha on February 05, 2007
I hope you have found some good responses. I tend to think that six weeks is too young to let her cry it out too but I agree that sleeping in her crib is probably best. My daughter slept in our bedroom in a bassinet too long and finally started sleeping through the night once her dad would let me put her in her own room. My biggest help was playing a lullaby CD softly in her room. The volume is really low the CD is soothing and I kept it on repeat. I have heard swaddling works wonders too. Best wishes!
B.P. answers from Omaha on January 24, 2007
Get "Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child". This guy advocates that the baby should always sleep in their own bed and my husnabd and I found that unless there were special circumstances, like someone was sick, that worked best for us.
If I were you (and I've done this), I would put her in her bed and let her cry. If you know she's been fed, and she is dry, then you know that she just needs to settle down. Also, we got a video monitor so that we could see that our girls were indeed safe.
Another thing is that she might be overtired. The book says that babies get overtired very easily and that you should never let them be awake for more than 2 hours. They should go back to sleep before this point or they get overtired.
Good luck! It does get better!
J.M. answers from Omaha on January 24, 2007
My baby had the same problem. Everyone told me to let her cry, but we held her like crazy when she was little...and now she seems more secure than other babies her age. We actually started swaddling our daughter more and that seemed to help her sleep apart from us longer. Have you tried putting her in a bouncy chair? Our baby loved her's. We went through this progression...sleeping with us for 5-6 wks, swaddled and in her bouncy chair, bassinette swaddled, and then eventually in her crib swaddled by about 12-14 wks. Hope this helps.
S.C. answers from Omaha on January 24, 2007
Well, six weeks is young and letting them cry is good for them it will teach them to be a little more independent and i have heard it is good for their lungs. However, every family is diffrent and it is ok to let the child sleep with you and your husband so long as it is safe for them (usually not)and not causing a toll on your relationship i say do what is easiest for you.