Your Baby Can Do It- Self Soothing for Infants
One of the biggest mistakes parents make is not having faith in their babies abilities to do things. Yes, babies do need assistance with a lot of things but you might be amazed at what they are actually capable of! In today's blog we are talking about infant self soothing and sleep plans!
Yes, your baby is capable of self soothing!
It may take some time and it may take some teaching but your baby is totally capable of self soothing in most cases. Of course there are exceptions such as when baby is sick or had a rough day and there are times when they might need a little extra cuddling and that is totally fine! However, if given the opportunity, most babies can learn to put themselves back to sleep when they wake at night (unless it's time to eat) and can manage a couple minutes on their own.
Babies cry to communicate. It doesn't necessarily mean they are sad or upset. A crying baby is trying to tell you something and it's your job to figure it out.
No, you don't have to pick up your baby immediately every time they cry. Usually it means "I'm hungry, I'm tired, I need a diaper change or a change of scenery." And sometimes it means they just want to be held. It is okay to let your baby cry for a minute, in fact, sometimes they just need to be heard and then they are content. You can talk to your baby and let them know you are there and that you will tend to them in a minute. Perhaps you are busy feeding an older child, cleaning up a mess or maybe just going to the bathroom yourself. It's ok to let the baby cry for a minute while you finish your task. Your baby is going to be fine! Short spurts of crying will not harm your baby, in fact, it may empower them to learn to self soothing and learn patience and independence.
Yes, your baby can sleep through the night by around 4 months old. Most babies will naturally sleep through the night with minimal to no crying by 3-4 months old….if you give them the opportunity and tools to do so. Your baby of course needs to be healthy, gaining weight and eating enough throughout the day. Your baby also needs to be taking appropriate naps during the day because daytime sleep does affect nighttime sleep. *If your baby was born early, is not gaining weight adequately or has any other medical issues please ask your pediatrician before starting any sleep plan so he or she can can advise you what is safe and appropriate for your particular baby.
If you are unsure where to start consider reading a sleep book such as 12 hours sleep by 12 weeks or hiring a postpartum doula or newborn care specialist that can put together and help implement a sleep plan for you. You do need a plan but a baby can sleep through the night whether you are doing attachment parenting, scheduled parenting or a combination of both.
Have faith in your baby and start off with good sleep habits from day one!