I am excited to introduce Elizabeth King, Founder and CEO of Sleep Baby Sleep Consulting. She is certified sleep consultant and Member of APSC, helping families all across the country get more sleep.
We pulled the top Q & A from the @dreamlandbabyco Instagram stories take over Elizabeth did, answering all your burning baby sleep questions. We hope Elizabeth's expert answers can help your baby (and you!) get some extra sleep tonight.
Your Baby Sleep Questions, Answered by a Certified Consultant
Q: Why does baby fuss and cry at bedtime but not at naptime?
A: This is most likely related to baby being overtired by the time bedtime rolls around. It sounds like you are catching those wake windows pretty close to accurate during the day for nap time. During the evening move up baby’s bedtime just a little bit.
Q: Any advice to help baby transition through sleep cycles? She’s 5 ½ months
A: The best thing you can do to help your baby transition between their sleep cycles is making sure they are going down fully awake, when they go to sleep. That will make sure their body has the skills to put themselves back to sleep when they are in the lighter sleep stages.
Q: Is there any hope for a terrible sleeper STILL at 15 months old?!
A: It is never too late! Don’t be discouraged. You want to make sure that you are teaching baby to go down fully awake and put themselves to sleep so they can have their good, strong independent sleep habits. That their naps are still appropriate for their age so they aren’t getting overtired.
Q: Can you sleep train while baby is teething, up all night?
A: So teething is kind of tricky. If they are actually cutting a tooth I would probably wait a few days. But teething really only lasts a few days so if they are up for an extended period of time it is usually not related to teething.
Q: 15 wk old from one awaking at night to two-three?
A: This is super common. It is usually related to being more aware of what is going on, their likes and dislikes. So things that kept them asleep before, now they need a little more help. So it is a great time to teach them to sleep independently.
Q: When should I start sleep training?
A: You should start sleep training baby by 12 weeks almost all babies have developed the ability to self-sooth which means put themselves to sleep. You can start to lay the foundations for good sleep habits right from the very beginning. If you do that you probably won’t have to ever “sleep train” your baby.
Q: Can some babies just go without naps?
A: No. Babies cannot skip a nap. Keeping a baby up and not giving them good naps is actually going to make their sleep worse. Babies get overtired really easily, causing problems with them falling asleep and staying asleep.
Q: What age does baby start to drop naps?
A: Most kids don’t drop their naps until 2-3 years old. They don’t drop to one nap until 15-18 months.
Q: What age can I start using Dreamland Baby?
A: From birth! The small (0-6) is indicated for 8 pounds and up.
Q: What is an overall day for 15 week old? How should wake time, nap times and bed times look?
A: Probably looking at 1 – 1.5 hours of awake time before they are ready for a nap, this includes their feeding time. You are looking at around 4 naps a day.
Q: My 12 week old baby is suddenly waking up every hour at night. What can I do to stop this?
A: First make sure hunger is not an issue. If that is not going on, remember that every time baby goes through a sleep cycle, which is about every 45 minutes, they are going to need whatever they had in order to stay asleep. If baby is not putting them self to sleep independently this is a great time to teach them. If they are needing your help to fall asleep, they are going to need your help to fall back asleep.
Q: Do you have any suggestions for a baby that doesn’t like being swaddled?
A: Babies tend to sleep sounder and longer when they are swaddled than if they have their arms out, if that moro reflex is pretty strong.
Q: How long of baby crying and you going up to soothe before you give up on the nap?
A: This depends on the baby and your comfort level with this kind of thing as a family. But I don’t want to let them go too long. Go in and help soothe them and get a nap, don’t let them just skip it, especially if it’s a really young baby.
Q: My three week old HATES being swaddled. She will fight it all night and wont sleep…
A: Make sure baby is swaddled really tight and then soothe her and settle her down while she is in that swaddle. She might hate it at first but she will sleep longer and sounded at this age.
Q: Why does my baby fight his sleep at bedtime but is tired?
A: This is usually happening because baby is over tired or they don’t know how to put themselves asleep independently. When we keep baby up to long, it makes it really hard to fall asleep and stay asleep. So you want to make sure you are putting them down when they first start to show those tired signs.
Q: How do you help a 10 week old to fall asleep independently?
A: At 10 weeks they still might be developing this skill but one of my tips would be to work on soothing baby in the crib without taking baby out of the crib. Work on settling them down and letting them fall asleep on their back.
Q: My 3 month-old baby goes to sleep until 3 am, then is up every hour. How to reduce these wakings?
A: Feeding and self-soothing. Make sure this baby is getting plenty to eat during the day. And working on self-soothing. Putting baby to sleep independently, so baby can put themselves back to sleep without your help.
Q: Almost 10 month old and waking to nurse 2-3 times a night. Is this normal?
A: There is a huge range of what is normal and not normal. At 10 most of the time you can expect baby to go a full 12 hours without eating.
Q: What’s a good schedule for 18 mo with a 7am wake time?
A: This depends on baby and your family. Baby should probably are doing one nap a day in the early afternoon and then getting an early bedtime, by 7pm.
Q: 2 month old cries during naps then when I go to soothe her, she smiles and tries to talk to me
A: It doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to let them just cry it out, but it does mean you need to temper your soothing to fit what they need. For example if baby isn’t hungry, you don’t need to feed them, if baby is tired, try to help sooth them.
Q: Baby is almost three months and has stopped sleeping more than 5-6 hours. Help me!
A: As babies get older they become more dependent on whatever they had before to help them fall asleep in order to stay asleep. So if you are giving a lot of assistance to help baby fall asleep they are going to continue to need that to stay asleep. This is a really good time to work on those self-soothing techniques.
Q: For 2 year old – Is it better to have 12 hours of sleep or 10 hours night sleep and 2 hour nap?
A: At this age sleep needs are really starting to begin to change but I think most 2 year old’s still need at least 1-2 hour nap. Staying awake for 12 hours is too long.
Q: My 7 month old baby was a dream sleeper. After a cough he’s been up all night.
A: If this baby had good sleep habits before you can get back to them just use going to need a littler reinforcement. Use whatever sleep methods you have already done to remind him to sleep on his own.
Q: Is it best try to eliminate sleep crutch all at once or one at a time?
A: Eliminate sleep crutches all at once. Just get a whole new habit going; a new normal that baby can adjust to.
Q: Baby rolls over in sleep and won’t settle back to sleep. Should I leave him to figure it out?
A: Baby will figure it out. Just them lots of practice during the day time. Try to help themselves learn to roll over instead of just flipping them over. The sooner they learn and master this skill, it won’t be an issue anymore.