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Welcome To The Members Area! Forums Baby Sleep Help New Frequent Wakings Reply To: New Frequent Wakings

  • Emma H

    May 8, 2024 at 11:43 am

    Hi Maddie,

    It sounds like you’re navigating a lot of changes, and while the progress may not feel straightforward, it’s definitely there! It’s great to hear that she’s less frustrated about not being fed to sleep, and it is easier to settle, even if the settling pyramid is still a challenge.

    It’s also good to hear that she has stopped lifting her legs and hitting them on the mattresses overnight. You may notice that when they learn a new skill, they practice it at night too, but this usually stops soon after it starts (like you’ve seen with your little one).

    As she is nearly 6 months of age, you may find that she is a lot more aware of her surrounding. Because she is so aware, she might find it easier to settle to sleep if you’re not in the room. Often what happens is we place them in the crib, they see us in the room and then they start to protest because they can see us but we aren’t doing anything. We’re just looking at them. This can then lead to them protesting a lot more than they would if we weren’t in the room.

    How would you feel about completing the nap or bedtime routine, laying her down in the crib, walking out of the room, closing the bedroom door, and completing the ‘Watch and Listen’ part of the pyramid outside the room?

    If you’re happy to do this, you can continue to monitor her outside the room using a video monitor, similar to the method I demonstrate in the “Live Example: Reading Cues at 5 Months of Age” video.

    If while you’re watching her, she calls out, but there are pauses between the call-outs, then this doesn’t necessarily mean she needs you. It’s more like her way of saying, “Hey, this is different! Where are you?” and it could also be her way of settling to sleep. We all take time to settle to sleep, and it can take up to 20 minutes for babies to fall asleep. So if she calls out but there are pauses, just give her the space to fall asleep without you in her room.

    However, if she calls out and there are no pauses, then that is her way of telling you that she needs you. At this point, you would enter the room and move up the settling pyramid.

    Regarding moving her to her own room, the American Academy of Pediatrics and Red Nose Australia suggest room sharing until your baby is 6 months old. Around that time, if she seems more aware of her surroundings and you think she’d sleep better in a quieter space, it might be the right time to transition her to her room. You might find that when you move her into her own room, she wakes less often overnight because she isn’t accidentally being roused from her sleep by you or our husband rolling over in bed or anyone snoring. You might also find that if she does wake up during the night, she might go back to sleep without your help, as she cannot smell you or your breastmilk.

    Before you transition her into her room, make sure it is conducive to sleep—dark, cool, and quiet. Test the room’s darkness during the day, adjust for any light leaks, and put her white noise machine in it.

    Once the room is set up, move the crib in the new room. I recommend moving the crib into her new room before bedtime. At bedtime, the circadian rhythm and sleep pressure work together to encourage her to fall asleep; therefore, she is more likely to find it easier to drift off to sleep. It’s not usual for babies to find it initially a bit challenging to fall asleep in an unfamiliar room, but since she has been sleeping in a crib, this disruption should be minimal. Once you have moved the crib into her own room, I recommend she sleeps in this room for naps and overnight. This consistency will make the transition easier for her.

    I hope this helps!