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How To Get A Baby To Sleep Through The Night

Baby/Parenting · January 23, 2018

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Liam is almost a year old. He has been sleeping consistently through the night since about 10 weeks. From weeks 5-10 he only sometimes woke up once if at all. People have asked me so many times HOW DID YOU DO IT? Today I am sharing my secrets, the things we did wrong, the things we did right, and what I would do different. How to get a baby to sleep through the night can be stressful, but it doesn’t have to be.

How To Get A Baby To Sleep Through The Night

My Secrets

My biggest non-secret secret is to read the book, 12 Hours of Sleep by 12 weeks. You guys it was short, to the point, and a complete game changer.

What We Did Wrong

For the first 6 weeks I let Liam nap exclusively in his Rock N Play. It’s a crutch, but I knew he would fall right to sleep. I also rocked him to sleep, held him till he fell asleep, and basically used any crutch to get him to nap. I never really thought to myself “Hey this baby is sleeping at night without you doing these things, he can nap alone!” We also depended A LOT on the pacifier. Honestly, we still do. He loves it and I have ZERO plans to take it away any time soon. Sorry not sorry.

What We Did Right

We took the swaddle/sleep sack away at 4 months. Liam was rolling, he didn’t need it. He has been sleeping in footie jammies ever since. He never had an issue. I did not want him to be a year or two years and still in a sleep sack depending on it. So we just took it away. He didn’t even notice. We also don’t have ANYTHING in the crib aside from him and a pacifier (OK 4 pacifiers). NO lovey, no blankie, no stuffed animals. For one, they aren’t recommended till after a year due to SIDS, and for two we didn’t want him dependent on a bunch of things for sleep. We also started using a white noise machine about two weeks in. Our bassinet had one but we wanted one that did not time out. We have this one. It’s hella cheap and works great. It plugs into the wall but also runs on batteries. We travel with it and also use it in the car. It’s amazing. We have a ROUTINE. You guys, routine is key. It talks about routine in the book, but from week 4 we started this routine and we haven’t deviated since. If we aren’t home, if we are traveling, whatever, we do it.

This Is Our Bedtime Routine

5:30PM — Liam has dinner, usually chicken or eggs, veggies, and fruit. Sometimes hummus because he loves it. Or he has what we have.

6:00PM — He has a bath

6:15PM — We go upstairs, we get a lotion massage, we get him in jammies, brush his hair, and then he has a bottle. As I have mentioned in a previous post, we LOVE Philips Avent bottles. I will recommend them ALL DAY LONG. This is NOT sponsored, I just really love them. We use the new Philips Avent Anti-Colic bottle with AirFree vent.  Just in case you need a great bottle this is what we use. It cuts down on gas and for Liam the need to burp frequently. You are kidding yourself if you think the bottle doesn’t make a difference. Gassy babies DO NOT SLEEP. They wake up, they cry, they spit up, they fuss. They are uncomfortable. So you want an anti-colic bottle. I PROMISE!  After his bottle and burp we each read him a book. After his books I say his blessings. Then he gets a diaper check, and we say something before bed we say every single night. We lay him in his crib AWAKE. This is KEY! For naps and bedtime you want them to go down awake. They have to learn how to put themselves to sleep.

7:00PM — We head downstairs and he usually falls asleep in about 10 minutes.

What I Would Do Different

I would NOT let him sleep in the Rock N Play. If I am able to do stairs (I couldn’t because of my c-section) I wouldn’t do a bassinet and I would just have him in his crib from night one. I would also probably not do a sleep sack. I would do a swaddle then nothing.

I know that was a lot of information, but doing all these things is what helped us get him to sleep through the night so early. So to recap:

  • Routine
  • Go down awake
  • The book, 12 Hours Of Sleep By 12 weeks
  • White Noise machine that doesn’t turn off
  • No swaddle/sleep sack as early on as you can
  • No crutches

I would love to know if you have any experience with this and how you got your baby to sleep through the night?

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  • 23 thoughts on “How To Get A Baby To Sleep Through The Night

    1. Caitlin

      I have a four and 1 year old who never liked to sleep through the night – we tried EVERYTHING, but they were just babies who despised sleep. HOWEVER, my little sister had her first back in September and she is sleeping through the night like an angel. She follows the same bedtime routine you did and she said without it she knows her baby wouldn’t be sleeping like she does! Great post =0)

    2. Kristin

      This is all great advice! With our first we tried all the “right” things, and it worked pretty well, although his eating habits sometimes kept him from sleeping through the night. With our second, we just didn’t have the room (or time!) since the kids shared a bedroom and kept each other awake. What worked for us was keeping her in the bed with us, which also made nursing easier!

    3. shirley corder

      Great suggestions. My babies are all parents today, but I never rocked them to sleep (unless they were ill obviously). They went down without help. If they fussed for a while that was okay. We didn’t rush back to check on them as we knew that’s all it would take to train her / him to fuss and Mummy will come! Share Your World

    4. Scott

      I was an expert at a tight swaddle and that worked so well for our girls. We still used a bassinet for the first couple weeks just to be safe!

    5. Lauren

      I’m really really hoping my girl can get to sleeping through the night soon! I’ve really got to try putting her down awake–at least a little awake.

    6. Crystal

      My middle child was the best sleeper. I didn’t do anything special; it was just her. But the other two were much more work!

    7. Heather

      We didn’t do any sleep training until Baby #3 and I’m so sad thinking about how much sleep I lost out on with the first two. That book sounds like a great resource.

    8. Arin

      We follow so many of these tips, and I have had three babies all sleeping through the night by about 10 weeks too. It is the best thing ever!

    9. Cara

      We do almost the exact same routine with my daughter, have been since she was a newborn, she’s 10 months old now, and she wakes up atleast once in the night every. single. night. I think it just depends on the baby. Congrats to you though! I’m envious 🙂 of your sleep!

    10. Carmela

      Sound like great ideas! Thanks for sharing! I love the idea of a baby massage as part of bedtime routine. I’m sure that would be so relaxing for an adult, why not for a baby? Good thinking!

    11. Maggie

      I tried everything to get my kid to sleep, and she didn’t sleep through the night til she was like 15 months old. I think by 4 months she would sleep 6 hours, until she learned to roll over. I would have loved that book! Maybe I will add it to my baby shower gift list.

    12. Megan

      I remember struggling SO much trying to get my daughter to sleep through the night. I’m definitely going to order the book you mentioned!

    13. Carrie | The Lavender Hytta

      Both of our babies slept through the night pretty early. I think our first was about 7 weeks old. We did swaddle him and he slept in his pack in play next to our bed until he was probably 3 months maybe more. Our daughter coslept with us until she was 5 or 6 months old. We started her off in the pack and play next to our bed but we rarely used it. Routines are definitely the key in my opinion.

    14. Ashley

      Great tips! Luckily my twins have been good sleepers. We did start them out in the crib from day one and took the sleep sacks away as soon as we were able too.


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