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Welcome To The Members Area! Forums Baby Sleep Help How to conquer the arms out transition Reply To: How to conquer the arms out transition

  • Emma H

    April 22, 2024 at 8:58 pm

    Hi Natalee,

    It’s great to hear that your little one is enjoying more freedom and sleeping for longer stretches since transitioning from swaddling!

    The behaviour you’re describing, where he’s flailing his arms and squealing in the middle of the night, is actually quite common among babies who have just made this switch. They’re often excited by their new ability to move more freely, which can indeed lead to some lively middle-of-the-night sessions.

    As your baby gets used to the new freedom, the novelty of being able to move and play with his arms freely during the night should gradually decrease.

    In saying that, it’s important to avoid falling into habits that might reinforce these new patterns of waking up during the night. To do this, it’s important to reinforce the idea that nighttime is for sleeping. Here are some strategies to help maintain this:

    1. Keep the sleeping environment conducive to sleep. This includes ensuring the room is dark, is at a comfortable temperature, and is free from sudden loud noises. If he starts to play or squeal, the less stimulating environment might encourage him to go back to sleep sooner.

    2. Limit Interaction During Night Wakings: When he wakes up at night, and he needs a feed or a diaper change try to keep interactions quiet and boring. Keep the lights dim and your voice low. This helps signal that it’s not playtime.

    3. Wait and Watch: Sometimes, giving him a moment to self-soothe without immediate intervention can encourage him to go back to sleep on his own. As long as he is safe and not distressed (so he is happily playing), it’s ok to leave him and give him the space and time to play and then fall back to sleep on his own. If you find that he needs help falling back to sleep, and it’s not a typical feeding time, use gentle methods like the settling pyramid or rocking rather than feeding him back to sleep.

    I hope that helps!