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Welcome To The Members Area! Forums Baby Sleep Help 3-month old – struggling to fall asleep Reply To: 3-month old – struggling to fall asleep

  • Emma H

    June 18, 2024 at 10:54 am

    Hi Simona,

    It’s great to hear that your little one is taking all his naps in the crib!

    It’s completely normal for infants to have catnaps at this age. Once your little one learns to fall asleep on his own in his crib, he will naturally start lengthening his naps when he is developmentally ready, which is usually around 5 – 6 months of age. So when you have the energy, it would be great if you could start trying the full settling pyramid to help him learn this skill.

    In the meantime, if he wakes up from a short nap and you can help him fall back asleep (and you’re comfortable doing so), you could try it for a few days to see if it improves his overnight sleep. If you choose to do this, I recommend focusing on the first 2 naps of the day, ensuring that the last nap is just a short catnap. Eventually, the goal is for the first and second naps to be longer, with the last nap of the day being a brief catnap.

    When you start using the full settling pyramid, if you decide to use a pacifier, I recommend giving it to him at the start of the sleep routine but removing it just before placing him in the crib or before he falls asleep. So, the second option I outlined in my response above. I recommend you remove it just before you place him in the crib or before he drifts off to sleep because I think the pacifier falling out is making it challenging for him to fall asleep and causing him to wake up fully between sleep cycles. Unfortunately, he won’t have the fine motor skills to put the dummy back in his mouth until he is around 7 – 8 months of age. Therefore, if it does fall out while he is trying to go to sleep or between sleep cycles, he will call out to you to come and put it back in. Because of this, we want to teach him how to fall asleep without the pacifier. So when I say fade out, I mean the goal would be not to use the pacifier for sleep in the future.

    Waking every 40 minutes at the beginning of the night is not something I would typically expect. Are you able to update me on what his daytime naps now look like, what time is bedtime, and what is happening overnight in general? Also, when he wakes 40 minutes after bedtime and continues to do so until midnight, how are you helping him fall back to sleep, or is he staying awake for a full wake window?

    Another thing to consider is that around 4 months of age, bedtime often starts to shift earlier. It might be worth trying to move his bedtime slightly earlier to see if it eliminates these frequent wake-ups.

    I hope this helps!