Saturday, January 12, 2013

Baby Scheduling

 
Snoozin
Several people have asked me how I got Hendrix to sleep through the night so early, along with how we get him to sleep 12 hours now.  When I was pregnant with Hendrix I read the book Becoming Baby Wise. I don't support everything the book says, but the whole scheduling aspect made sense to me. I function a lot better when I know what to expect so why wouldn't a newborn.


 I didn't start "scheduling" Hendrix using the baby wise method until he was about 5 weeks old. He was already sleeping about 5-6 hours at a time. Within one week of being on a schedule He was sleeping 8-9 hours through the night. By the time he was 10 weeks old he was sleeping 12 hours a night and has continued to do so (He is 19 months now). We still follow a schedule of sorts with him napping about the same time everyday and having a bed time, which does get fudged a little on the weekends.

The schedule I use to start out is as follows:

6:00 Wake up & Eat
Awake time
Nap
9:00 Eat
Awake time
Nap
12:00 Eat
Awake time
Nap
3:00 Eat
Awake time
Nap
6:00 Eat
Awake time
Nap
9:00 Eat***(Once your child is sleeping 11-12 hours then this feeding would be cut out.)
Bedtime


I try to stick within 30 minutes either way of  these times as much as possible, but obviously sometimes that doesn't happen. Babies can get hungry early, won't stay awake, or I need to alter it to fit what we have going on that day. I haven't really had a problem with either of my kids being able to go the whole 3 hours in between feedings and I breastfeed exclusively. The whole idea is for them to be very hungry so when they do eat they are getting full and not just snacking all day long.

During the night I let the baby wake up on their own to eat because then I know that they are actually hungry and not being forced to eat. Also I typically let them fuss or cry for about five minutes before getting them up to eat. Half the time they will self soothe and go back to sleep.

As far as awake time I don't really set a limit. Sometimes they will stay awake nearly the whole 3 hours and nap for 30 minutes and other times they will nap the whole time in between feedings. I know some people suggest 1.5 hours of each during that 3 hour time period.

I started using the same schedule with Carson at 3 1/2 weeks because she was only sleeping 3-4 hours at a time during the night. Within two days she was sleeping in 6 hour stretches. At 5 1/2 weeks she slept 7 hours straight through the night and was consistently sleeping through the night by 7 weeks old.

Hopefully this helps anyone having problems getting their kid to sleep through the night. I know every kid is different, but I do think that having some sort of schedule is a great idea even if it is only for mommy's sanity.

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