Sleep Training 101; 0-3 Months

So you spend 40 weeks of your life growing a tiny human, about 20 (give or take - hopefully take for your sake!) hours in labor, 2-3 days recovering in the hospital with countless visitors and being woken up what feels like every 5 seconds for meds and vitals, and then they send ya home and tell ya to "rest". Let's laugh together, ladies. If you are in this stage right now I have two things to say to you :

1. It is not forever. I know it feels like forever, but it is not.

2. You will sleep again, I promise.

I know if you're reading this  you're probably just desperate for these tips and tricks so let's just get right into it!

*Just so you know, my posts usually contain affiliate links. This means that if you make a purchase by pressing a link, I may receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you.*



sleep training your baby

Okay, so first things first. Your newborn is not going to completely sleep through the night. They need to get up and eat. This is normal. There is no magical method to make them not do this. BUT you CAN use my method to help them sleep in longer stretches. My baby would do 3-4 hour stretches at night on average. She would more-so do a 5-6 hour stretch, wake up, eat, and then do another 3-4 hour stretch. 

New Mamas : How does 6 hours of uninterrupted sleep sound?! Woot Woot!

I cannot guarantee this works for absolutely everybody, but it did work for us, as well as some friends we have suggested it to. I also am not going to lie and say she's a perfect sleeper every night. She definitely has had her gassy or colic-y nights, But all babies do! I found that if I can do something that works 90% of the time for us, that the other 10% is not so unbearable.

1. Routine

THIS IS CRUCIAL. I had a "friend" one time look at me like I was a lunatic and say "Why do you already have her on a schedule?" with a nice little eye roll to follow. Routine is SO IMPORTANT. At every stage of their lives! It helps them THRIVE! Our routine went as such :

7 PM - Bath time 

7:45/8 PM - Story time

8/8:15 PM - Nursing (or bottle)

8:30/9 PM - SLEEP.

I know they say "don't bathe your baby every day" but I felt that for routine purposes it really helped us, so that is obviously up to you. But I would suggest filling that space with something else familiar on the nights you chose to not bathe them. For us, bath time insinuates to her that it's time to settle down and get sleepy. Although she does not personally tell me that, I can tell, as her mother, that during bath time she really relaxes and starts to settle down slowly. During bath time, we use Lavender Shampoo and Lavender Body Wash as well. When actual bath time is complete, we do a short baby massage with Lavender Bedtime Lotion. Lavender is everything. It is said to help babies soothe and the one we use, which is fairly common, is formulated with "NATURALCALM" essences, which release a blend of gentle and calming aromas.
sleep training

Now the clothing is tricky. Did you know that heavy clothing can increase the risk of SIDS? How you dress them for bedtime is REALLY important for what's to come in the next few steps. We found that the onesies, that are long sleeve, and have the flip over mittens on the end work best. See what I'm talking about here. After we got her all dressed, we would read her a quick story book, and I would nurse her in the rocking chair in the nursery. A bonus tip : make sure you are spending plenty of time in the nursery! It's very important to get them comfortable and familiarized with their room, if you ever plan on them sleeping in there. If you don't plan on that, or that isn't an option, I just suggest at least nursing or feeding in the same spot every night. Usually she would get very sleepy, but not quite asleep, after eating. Now it's time for the real key to the equation.

 

2. Swaddling

Okay don't exit this screen! I know you probably think you know everything about swaddling, but so did I! Like every other mom out there, you're going to come home, try swaddling them, and come to the conclusion that your baby "doesn't like to be swaddled." This is normal. They absolutely fuss and fight the swaddle, no doubt. But once they are swaddled - that's where the magic happens. There's a reason they are swaddled and quiet in the hospital, people!! Aden + Anais Swaddles are a must, they are thin and light but still get the job done, and I absolutely consider this a necessity for all new moms. Practice also makes perfect! Once you get past the fuss and the fight, it is so worth it, I promise!!
 The swaddle method can be tricky, but this image I found on  buzzfeed  is really a huge help!

The swaddle method can be tricky, but this image I found on buzzfeed is really a huge help!

... but wait, there's more!

 

3. Double Swaddling

Okay this was the real magic for us. She would easily kick and punch her way out of the single swaddle. I don't even mean using another muslin blanket to add the double, you NEED one of THESE!!!!!

Make sure you have the correct products at hand, because The Swaddle Me is another necessity!! Not only are they going to fight being swaddled, they still have their Moro reflex, which is their "startle" reflex. This will wake them up out of a dead sleep! Double swaddling them is nothing new, though! They also do this at most hospitals as well! The double swaddle method helps them feel secure and supported, similar to the womb. and although they will fight it at first, a couple of rocks and bounces later, they will be passed out! 

 

Final Thoughts

  • You need Aden + Anais Swaddles
  • You need a Swaddle Me Sac
  • Do not dress them in heavy clothing when double swaddling.
  • Don't sleep on this method!!! It may not work instantly on night one, but NOTHING does!! (except my baby acne cure)

    Hang in there, mama! Your baby is going to be sleeping in no time! 

    I hope this method works for you, too! Subscribe to my blog, and look out for my next Sleep Training 101 post on 4-6 month babes! (Currently working out the kinks on this method with my 4 month old!)

    As always, please feel free to reach out to me if any of this seems confusing or you need any extra help! Mama's gotta stick together!

    Until next time!

    Xo

    -MMM

    SLEEP TRAINING