help with bedtime routine.

Charlie is 14 weeks and goes to bed between 7 - 8pm as this seems to be when he gets tired! we bath him, put him in his pj's and then give him a bottle if due for one (all depends on when he wakes for his night bottles as to when he'll want his bottles for day) if not a bottle we offer his dummy. Anyway i'd love to know how to get charlie to settle himself as at the moment we either have to cuddle him till he falls asleep or sit beside the cot stroking his face, this can take quite a while though - so wondered if you could offer any tips??? xx

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  • i think that they do eventually learn to settle themselves. fin has always been a good sleeper but we were cruel parents - he went in his own room at 9 weeks (although this was partly due to him been huge and no longer fittin in moses basket) we then used controlled cryin. it is the hardest thing i have ever done and i cried but from 14 weeks he has never cried when put down at night for bed and has then slept 11pm-7am. also i know there is a pick up, put down method, i dont know much about it but is supposed tot be effective.xxx
  • We've been quite lucky with Nathan as he generally sleeps well but when he's been hard to settle I have also found stroking his face works. I start normallt but gradually leave longer pauses between each stroke so that when your stop its less noticeable. I have also tried walking a few steps away from the cot and then coming back and carrying on as it seems to help stop the initial panick when I move away.

    xxxx
  • Hey honey,

    The best thing really is consistancy, especially as Charlie's new to all this routine. I think a key may be to choose a bedtime and give him a bottle then regardless of when he had the last one. Obviously if you say pick 8pm as bedtime and he's hungry at 7.30 just switch it to earlier. If he's had a recent one just give him a smaller amount. Once he's had his bottle you could then bath him, swaddle him and put him down with his dummy (if he has one). When I was doing this with Oscar I then used to read him a bedtime story over and over till he fell asleep, not touching him or going to him unless the dummy fell out and then all I'd do is pop it back in then go back to the story. Once he was used to the idea that he wasn't going to get cuddles etc I then cut down each reading of the story. Now he goes into his cot awake, without a story or dummy and settles himself to sleep. He does moan occasionally but doesn't cry and if he did I would go to him. However, you have to bear in mind that routines are a bugger to put into place and require a hell of a lot of commitment on your part whichever way you decide to do it. I've been told that letting them cry it out works fastest (unlike controlled crying you don't go back to them because babies under 6 months get even more upset if you do apparantly) but luckily Oscar's never been a cryer unless he's poorly!

    Good luck with whatever you decide to do hon xxx
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