Teething, rolling over, learning to stand up, these are all wonderful moments in your baby’s development that you’ll remember forever.
When it comes to their sleep though, developmental milestones can be a real impediment to them getting to sleep and staying asleep through the night.
In today’s video, I’ve got some great tips to help you minimize the fallout from these hiccups and help keep your baby on track during naps and through the night while they master these newfound abilities.
[/w- Hi, I’m Dana, welcome to this week’s video.
It’s so exciting in a parent’s life when our babies start doing things, right? Those first few months they don’t do a whole lot. In fact really, they don’t do much at all besides even sleep.
But as they get older and they start to smile and they start to crawl and roll and sit up and walk, all of these little milestones are so exciting, and we love when they show up, except for when it comes to sleep. Developmental milestones almost always causes sleep aggression. So I’m just warning you that that will probably show up.
And the problem with developmental milestones in sleep is that there’s just this biological urge on the baby’s part to keep practicing the skill. They have to practice and practice and practice until they reach some level of mastery over that skill, and then the body can relax into it, and they’ll just practice periodically, but in that first surge when they’re really learning that skill, they’re unstoppable.
I mean you can watch a baby who’s getting even frustrated with it, right? I can remember when my son learned to sit up in his crib. He would sit up in his crib and cry and get stuck there, right? ‘Cause he hasn’t figured out how to get back down yet. I would go in, I would lay him down, five minutes later, he’s sitting up again, and this would go on and on and on, and I can see that he’s getting more and more frustrated, he’s getting more and more fatigued, his crying is becoming even more intense, but for whatever reason he just won’t stop sitting up.
Well I now know that that’s just that, a biological necessity. So what can we do when this shows up for our children? Well the first thing to remember is that it will blow over. It can take a week or two, sometimes even into the third week before it subsides, but it will subside. And in the meantime, there’s really not a lot you can do about it. Definitely practice during the day, right? Take some time out of your day if it’s a sitting or a standing skill that they’re developing. Practice getting back down again. This is what it looks like to get up, this is what it looks like to get down. Helping them sort of master the skill a little bit faster will definitely ease some of their aggression.
In the meantime though if they’re legitimately stuck, a lot of babies can roll onto their tummies just fine, but they can’t get themselves back again. And if they’re not comfortable in that position for sleep, they’re probably gonna cry. I just feel like it’s a bit unfair to leave them in that position if they’re not comfortable there, so definitely go in and offer some assistance. And that might mean for a week or even two, you’re going in there multiple times just to lay them back down or roll them back over, and that’s okay. This is just, you gotta ride it out.
Just be careful though that you don’t give them too much attention when you go in there. If every time they sit up, you go in and have a 10 minute peekaboo session or a tickle fight or whatever you’re doing in there, then they might start to associate the fact that when they do that behavior, it gets really a good reward for lots of interaction with you. So you just want to make it really minimal. You’re just kind of going in their business like rolling them back over, laying them back down, and then you’re getting yourself out of there as quickly as you can. And just keep repeating that process until they finally fall asleep.
And just hang onto the fact that until the next milestone, right, this is gonna go on for probably a couple of years, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but it’s exciting and you can be proud of your child for accomplishing a new skill, and just know that it definitely will blow over with time and patience.
Thanks for watching today, sleep well.pex]
If your baby, infant or toddler is having trouble sleeping through the night, help is just a click away! The Sleep Sense Program has helped over 57,00 parents to get their kids sleeping 11-12 hours through the night AND taking long, restful naps during the day. If you’re ready to get started today – I’m looking forward to helping you!