When Can I Begin Sleep Training My Baby?
You have reached the point where you are exhausted and not sleeping
Next, you head to Google and look for “ sleep coaches” “sleep training methods” “How to sleep train a baby” “when to sleep train a baby” and the results are overwhelming.
There are so many different methods of sleep training, so how do you pick the right one? There are so many thoughts about sleep training, there is even some “evidence” that sleep training is dangerous, but we will talk about that in another blog! Back to looking for a sleep training method. Do you not pick a sleep training method and just hire a sleep coach to help you in home so that you do not even have to think about what to do? Or do you go with the cheaper option and hire a sleep consultant? Okay, but what is the difference between a sleep coach and a sleep consultant?
Where do you even begin with sleep training?
The first step is determining if your baby is old enough to sleep train! It’s simple really, we look at development and age of baby! The typical recommendation is 4-6 months or after for anything other than a gentle sleep conditioning* approach. Babies younger than 6 months will need to be sleep trained a specific way to stay within guidelines.
*Gentle Sleep Conditioning is something some sleep consultants offer and we do with our Postpartum Doula Team. Overnight support is utilized and feedings are slowly stretched to where at the 3-4 month mark baby is only waking up once to sleep and is sleeping in their own space, independently with minimal soothing and check ins needed.
The appropriate age to begin evidenced based sleep training with your baby is a minimum of 4 months old, however, some families get the go ahead from their pediatrician a little before that. Always consider discussing this option with your pediatrician to ensure that your baby is ready. A good rule to follow is when your baby is 4 months, you are ready, then they are ready! We will not dive more into how to sleep train today, but check back in for future blogs on that topic!
Once you have determined HOW you will sleep train your baby, WHEN you will sleep train your baby, next you must put your plan into place!
If you do NOT want to sleep train your baby alone, reach out to have one of our in-home sleep coaches come to you!