Sunday, August 28, 2005

Correcting bad habits

Can a seven-month-old already have bad habits? Apparently so.

Last night I hauled out my "Helping Your Baby Sleep Through the Night" book. I'm tired of getting up to nurse. I'm tired of getting up to flip Luke from his front to his back when he wakes up frustrated. According to the book, I've been helping him establish bad nighttime habits. Babies don't really need the nighttime feeding anymore after 4-5 months, but sometimes they get used to it and mom doesn't know any different. Also, he is a "nighttime crier" - not that he cries when he goes down, but he cries during the night for attention (i.e. "come flip me! I'm stuck!).

So, what is the solution? This doctor says to let them cry it out. Ay yay yay. Just what I wanted to hear. Good thing we had to turn the AC back on today - at least the windows are closed and we won't worry about waking the neighbors!

He also suggests slowing weaning the nighttime nurser (5 minutes first night, next night 4, next night 3, and so on). I like this approach better - easier on the parents! Hopefully it won't take too long. Last night I fed for 5 minutes. He cried when I put him down, but only for about 30 seconds. The book gives all these suggestions for what to do after the first 30 minutes of crying, 45 minutes, an hour, etc. I'm thinking I'm glad it only took 30 seconds - I don't know what I would do if I had to listen to crying for 45 minutes (which is probably why so many parents just get up and feed the baby).

I also realized that Luke needs to be on his stomach more. This rolling over and not going back thing is getting old. Maybe if I can have him practice more he won't be so frustrated when he's in his crib on his tummy.

So here he is today practicing. The cat was there and Luke was enthralled, but of course he ran away as soon as I came with the camera.




Mom Underground said...

Gabriel still gets up once a night to eat. I'd let him cry it out, but the kid downs 6 oz. in no time and seems genuinely hungry. I guess we could try NOT feeding him and see if he protests too much. We just really want to go back to sleep, so we give him the bottle and he konks out again. We are also very tired of getting up all the time. Gus didn't at this age, so we chalk it up to Gabriel being actually hungry. But maybe he's not. Hmm.

Dad said...

I think it's in the genes. You cried at night - and we got up with you - until your sister was born...20 months! Getting up is a pain, but you were worth it. You'll find your way with Luke...

TBG said...

Good luck. I hope these methods work. I am sure you will be happy to get a full night of sleep soon. Love the pics of Luke he is always smiling.