Sleep training is a difficult thing for most new parents. However, it is okay to make mistakes because parenting is a trial and error process. Also, it is always nice to learn from the mistakes of others, so you can save yourself the trouble of making them too. Here are 7 things to avoid doing while trying to sleep train your baby.
1. Not maintaining a sleep schedule
If you make your child go to sleep at a particular time every day, they will instinctively feel sleepy at that hour eventually. It is important that you maintain this schedule for your child. Not only will this help you sleep train them easier, but it will also help them in maintaining a regular sleeping time for the rest of their life.
2. Using motion to induce sleep
Motion induces sleep naturally, and that’s why we feel sleepy during car rides and flights. But, this isn’t the deep good night sleep that a child should be having. If you constantly use motion to induce sleep, then they will likely have disturbed and light sleep for the rest of their life. Making them sleepy with motion, but making them fall asleep as they lie flat in their crib or bed, is the best way to do things if you have a child who is fussy during bedtime
3. Allowing late bedtimes
It’s okay for your child to have one or two late bedtimes in a month. But if they make a habit out of it, then this is most likely something that they’ll keep doing for the rest of their life. This will cause not only cause fatigue, but will also make them very lethargic. 10 hours of sleep is important to feel refreshed the next morning
4. Distracting surrounding
When your child’s surrounding is too stimulating, it can make it difficult for them to go to bed. Having things like musical toys, blinking lights or moving toys can distract your child from their sleepy mood, putting them in a playful mood
5. Inappropriate room conditions
It is believed that children are scared of the dark and need nightlights or other bright lights to help them sleep. However, the reality is that dark, cold rooms are the best environments for a child to sleep in. Fear of things like the dark can be put to rest with a little explanation and later, making their room dark will have them falling asleep in no time.
6. Succumbing to their crying
Usually, children throw fits and crying tantrums to see how far they can get their parents to follow through with their whims. If you do not give into their tears and establish rules about going to sleep, you will be more successful in training them to sleep. This is also generally a good idea to not give into their tantrums, as that might make them bratty.
7. Constantly checking in
Though this seems quite innocent and it actually is, but this might wake your child up, causing them to have irregular sleep. And if this is a constant habit on your part, having disturbed sleep might become a habit of your child as they grow up. This might make them very tired and make them less productive during the day. Although, checking in on them is not always a bad idea, do it while being quiet and in moderation.