If you've made the choice to sleep train your baby, you've probably had quite a few people weigh in with their opinion. Instead of second-guessing your decision and worrying about what you might being doing wrong, you should focus on the positive. You'll be pleasantly surprised to learn about all the things you're doing right when sleep training, which can be used as ammo against your haters.
If you're not familiar with sleep training, it's fairly straight forward. "Sleep training is the process of helping a baby learn to fall asleep and stay asleep through the night," according to Baby Center. There are numerous ways to put this philosophy into practice. Some parents prefer the Cry It Out method while others take the Pick Up Put Down route. Though there isn't necessarily a perfect way to establish healthy bedtime habits, it's always nice to know when you're doing something right.
When you're in the midst of sleep training, it can be helpful to have a little outside perspective. Too often, parents don't give themselves the pat on the back they so rightly deserve. Surviving bedtime battles is no easy feat. So give yourself a confidence boost and check out these things your doing right when sleep training.
1. Knowing What's Normal For Your Child
Child sleep consultant Mylee Zschech tells Romper that you have to consider your child's sleep schedule to successfully sleep train. "Making use of their natural sleep windows means they won’t be overtired and struggle to fall asleep," she says.
2. Having A Routine
"I recommend parents develop a bedtime routine with nonverbal cues that let their baby know it is time to settle down," sleep expert and OB-GYN Dr. Amelia Bailey tells Romper. "Turning the light off first helps them adjust to a dark room while you’re still with them." That's just one approach you could incorporate into your routine, but in the end, it's all about continuing to do what works for you and your baby.
3. Getting On Their Level
4. Being Consistent
"Having a consistent routine helps to give your child cues that bedtime is coming," Zschech says. "If you want a successful outcome for you and your child, you have to be consistent." Sticking with your child's sleep schedule may not always be convenient, but it turns out to be a key factor in getting the job done right.
5. Responding Regularly
"Parents who respond to their child during the sleep coaching process will have much more success than those who respond inconsistently during the process," Kesatie says. It can be tempting to give in to your child's demands, but making an exception once can easily turn into a bad habit.
6. Staying Flexible
"Whatever method you choose to help your child sleep better, realize that change takes time," certified sleep consultant Christine Stevens tells Romper. "Since we can't explain to them that we're changing the way they fall asleep, I encourage parents to comfort their child to help bring their stress level down." As with most things in life, you're doing it right if you're patient and kind.