About My Baby Sleep Guide


I believe that everyone deserves a good nights sleep. That's why all the posts on this site are free.

I started this site when I had my first child and quickly figured out that unless you're extremely lucky, babies rarely "sleep like a baby".  It didn't take long for me to realize that I was not the only one who felt this way! The information on this site is from various books, personal experience, other people's experiences and things I learned in school. Since it is from various resources, some of it does contradict at times. Most of the time there are simply multiple solutions/answers to a problem/question.

Hopefully you will find some tips and trouble shooting advice on how to help your baby sleep better for naps or at night. Make sure to check out the sleep index, blog user guide, and labels for quick answers to some of your questions. Feel free to leave a question or your own input in the comment section below a post.

This site may be more useful for those of you who prefer to follow a general schedule/routine with your babies (since I do, so much of the information centers around this) but can certainly be useful for those of you who choose not to do so. Note: This site is not here to debate over why I or anyone else should not be keeping our baby on a schedule or sleep training. If you don't have something nice to say, please don't say it :)

If this blog has been helpful for you, please consider following me on facebook, twitter and through email or a reader

This blog includes lots of thoughts and ideas but none of these should be construed as medical advice of any sort. Leave that up to your doctor. I try to give useful advice, but I cannot be held responsible for any decisions you make related to things I write. I am just writing as a mom. You are in charge of your own choices.

If you need to contact me you can reach me at contact[at]mybabysleepguide[dot]com


THANKS!
Rachel

16 comments :

  1. Ana commented on About Blog - My Baby Sleep Guide:

    Hi Rachel!

    I've read a lost of posts on your blog, but I really hope you could offer me some advice regarding my baby sleep. I apologize in advance for my English , it;s not my native language.
    So, my baby is 8 months old and his night sleep it's a mess. He goes to sleep around 8- 9 PM but not by himself. I nurse him then I held him in my arms until he's asleep. This doesn't take too long, 10-15 min and we also use a pacifier. But after this he wakes up every 1 to 2 hours. Sometimes i nurse him to sleep or just hold him in my arms until he falls asleep again, but it's terrible to do it every hour. I don't know what should i do, what it's better for his age. During the day he sleeps ok, today is the first day i implemented 2 naps and he did ok. I put him to sleep by rocking him on a pillow. I realize that our problem is probably the fact that he doesn't know how to put himself back to sleep once he's awake, but except for letting him cry it out what else can I do? Or is this the only alternative that we have? I have to go to work in a few months and a really want to do something about his night sleep by then.
    Thank you very much,
    Ana

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    1. Ana,
      You are right, the nightly wakings are probably mainly from him being used to falling asleep with your help rather than falling asleep on his own. An earlier bedtime would also likely help. Look over this post for some tips of sleep as well as this sleep training section. There are some ideas outside of cio you can try. I am working on a post with even more too but it might not be done for a couple weeks-Sorry! Reading over comments on the night sleep section can also help with some ideas.

      Good luck,
      Rachel

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  2. Maggie commented on About Blog - My Baby Sleep Guide:

    HI Rachel

    I am very interested in the wonder weeks and wonder if you could cite the evidence or research you have used for these claims? I would like to read the original research that has led you to these conclusions.

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    1. Maggie,
      I didn't come up with the wonder weeks. You can find out about the research behind it in the book The Wonder Weeks.

      Delete
  3. Katie commented on About Blog - My Baby Sleep Guide:

    Rachel - can you help me? My 10 week old daughter is sleeping fine at night (we are on a 4 hour feeding schedule starting at 7:30 in the morning, with a dream feed around 10:30/10:45 and she sleeps until about 7:15 the next morning). My issue is our naps. Often when she has her first feed of the day, she falls asleep about 45 mins, or 1 hour later (this morning she fell asleep at 8:30am). She'll usually sleep about 45 mins and then is up and we play. But then she gets tired again and needs to nap again for about 45 mins. Is this normal? How can I get her to be bit more consistent with naps?

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    1. Katie,
      At this age, it is normal to have that first wake time be pretty short, like an hour. The others will likely be a bit longer. Look over the wake time length post for more info.
      http://www.mybabysleepguide.com/2009/02/wake-time.html?m=1
      Also look over the short nap and extending nap post to see if you can lengthen naps.
      http://www.mybabysleepguide.com/2010/10/naps-index-general-information-and.html?m=1
      At this age, it sent unusual for naps to be a bit inconsistent. I find that the eat/activity/sleep routine helps create more order to the day as does having baby get up at the same time each day. The routine posts may also be helpful for you.
      http://www.mybabysleepguide.com/2010/10/sleep-schedule-routine-index.html?m=1

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  4. Hi Rachel,

    I have found your website very useful. I have a 16 week old baby and she has been catnapping since she was 5 weeks old. I have played around with her sleep times and have started the SOS approach a few weeks ago. She is still catnapping with 2 hrs of up time as per SOS approach. It has improved slightly where she is doing more 1.5 hour naps however its not enough for her and I go in and give her a pacifier. She can usually go to sleep on her own and only uses dummy to resettle. Sometimes she will do 35min, 40mins and sometimes 50mins and then wakes up screaming, in which the pacifier comes in handy. I was thinking maybe she is up for too long? really not sure . She is my third child and my other two kids were having more good days by now than bad days. I still have not been able to have a day with 2-3 good naps. Its alittle hit and miss with her sleep. I am a structured person and need her to be in a routine so I don't have an overtired child and so I can also attend to my other two children. I also don't let her cry it out either. She usually does a little protest cry and settles pretty quickly, if it doesn't happen within a few minutes I will pat her off. Any advice would be appreciated. I was also thinking of looking into the baby whisperers approach. How would you compare it to the SOS (save our sleep method) . Thanks in advance

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  5. Hi Rachel,
    I discovered your blog a week ago when I started trying to sort out day time naps for my 3.5 month old daughter. I just wanted to let you know how fabulous I think your advice and information is: a variety of techniques, non judgemental, humourous. I'm a GP in Australia and will certainly be using your page as a resource for other mothers. Thanks so much, keep up the good work, and good luck with bub #3.
    Liza

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    1. Liza Robertson,
      Thanks so much for your kind words Liza. Good luck with everything!

      best,
      Rachel

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  6. Hi, My toddler is 20 months and we've had sleep issues from day 1 with a baby with reflux that we didn't understand and nobody helped us with. Totally removing dairy, egg and gluten from my diet, and then baby's once weaned, solved the reflux (hopefully this info is helpful to someone else with a reflux baby (although not all reflux is due to food sensitivities)).

    We've had months now of short naps (one nap a day that is no more than 1hr 15mins, or two 1hr naps), and early rising (before 5.30am). I prefer a start of 7am, but can cope with 6am, but can't cope with before 6am (especially not 4.15am!). We think our toddler is very sensitive to being overtired, and has trouble with noise as is quite an alert/inquisitive toddler. We don't know how to get more sleep. One nap a day gives the best night sleep, but we quite quickly get her overtired as her nap is too short, which means the awake times are too long. Helping her back to sleep worked short term but not long term. Crying it out - well, she'll cry from 4.30am - 6am when we get her up.

    The room seems dark enough. When we've tried putting white noise in but she's so interested she doesn't go to sleep (she normally goes to sleep fine on her own), or she fully wakes up when she hears it at transition.

    What are we doing that's so wrong? We've been tired for so long.

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    1. amack,

      I would be tired too!
      With a short nap, I would at least do an early bedtime. You will have to see how early you can do without causing other issues, but with most babies, this helps things.

      I would consider trying some sort of clock that tells her when a nap starts and ends, and maybe even this for the morning early wake ups.
      http://www.mybabysleepguide.com/2012/05/ok-to-wake-clocks-and-lights-for-early.html
      I would definitely make sure she isn't allowed out of bed without you getting her. Not sure if you do or do not do this, but I'm mentioning it as this leads to some kids this age getting up earlier and earlier and not napping well.

      You can try extending how long you leave her before getting her up ever few/several days.

      If she's super distracted, it seems like the white noise would help, but if you haven't ever used it and it bugs her, then it obviously isn't helping so don't push it.

      Make sure to look at the short nap post and the early morning post especially for extra suggestions that may be helpful.

      best,
      rachel

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  7. Hi Rachel,
    I have twins that just turned four months old. One is doing great sleeping as long as he has his paci and goes to bed on his own in crib, unswaddled. My other twin won't take a paci and has been sleeping at night on my husband in the baby carrier. He doesn't like to be swaddled either, but we have tried to force it. I have tried gentle cio but when he does fall asleep his arms wake him up which lets me know he still has the moro reflex. How can they self soothe if still swaddled? He sleeps great on his stomach but we are a little worried and think he needs another month before we can put him down that way. Also, I feel cio is a little young too, so we are stuck with what our options are for the next month. It's hard to have him in the carrier for every nap because of the other twin and my 3 year old son. I tried pu/pd today but he never went to sleep! I guess I should have given up after 20 mins. or 30 as you state and put him to sleep any way I know how. I guess really I just want to know if I should keep trying in the crib, pu/pd, unswaddled (or use merlins sleep suit or zippadee, we have everything). What if he just never goes to sleep with pu/pd? Sorry if this is all over the place, my brain is frazzled. THanks for any insight you can provide for me! Sincerely,
    Jen

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    1. Jen,
      Take a look at the 3-6 month sleep guide. It covers some ideas for this age to help with sleep. It goes over some sleep training methods (which you'll likely need at some time or another) which may or may not work for you at this point.

      http://www.mybabysleepguide.com/2016/01/3-6-month-sleep-guide.html

      You can also look over the no cry sleep solution stuff which you will find under the sleep training tab at the top of the page.

      You will hear different things about swaddling and self soothing, but I personally see babies settle themselves to sleep just fine swaddled, so I feel it is fine. But that is something you have to decide on yourself.

      Sleeping on the back can certainly be a lot harder for some babies than others, but It is the only method I personally recommend for safety reasons. If you have him sleep on his tummy anytime before he puts himself there, I would recommend some sort of a movement monitor.

      As you'll see on the 3-6 month sleep post, I think you are ok to try any sleep method right now that you feel comfortable with. The key is to follow through and be consistent.

      Good luck! I would also have a very frazzled brain in your position too!

      Rachel

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  8. Hi Rachel, thank you so much for this blog, it was a life saver with my first, but my second has thrown us for a loop!!
    She goes to bed around 7-7:30 every night and eats at 6, 10 and then I let usually let her indicate when she needs her next feeding, sometimes it's 2am, 3am or whenever. For the last 2 weeks, she has been eating and it seems like she is asleep and I put her back in the crib and she is usually quiet (I think she is asleep or close to it when I put her back in) for 30 minutes or so and then will cry for an hour after that. Sometimes I hear her wake up and I go in there and she is wide awake at 4 am. Why is she suddenly wide awake at this time and how do I break that habit? I've been letting her cry herself back to sleep ( I got in once or twice to check on her and give her her pacifier), but it's been ongoing for a couple weeks of crying herself to sleep. What should I do to keep her from waking up/ get her to go back to sleep faster?

    Thank you so much,
    Rosie

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    1. I forgot to mention that she is 5 months old!

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  9. Hi Rachel,

    I just started doing the shush-pat with my 3mo and so far it's working great! It takes awhile for her to settle but I'm ok with that and am hoping it will get shorter and shorter!

    My question is about naps. I am reading The Baby Whisperer and I see that she recommended either wake to sleep or P.U./P.D. for elongation of short naps. I've tried both and the wake to sleep seems to just wake her fully up. When I shush-pat, she will usually eventually go back to sleep (and I rarely need to move on to P.U./P.D.) but I have to pat or leave my hand on her for 30+ minutes. I'm wondering if I'm doing this correctly or if I should try something else? Will shush-patting her back to sleep teach her to stay asleep longer on her own or will I have to keep doing it to get her to sleep longer? Any other short nap advice is appreciated as well!

    Thanks!
    Lexa

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