How To Get Baby To Sleep Alone – Everything You Need
What do you need to do to get your baby to sleep alone? This can be a difficult question to answer. In this post I will be sharing the things my husband and I have used to get all three of our kids sleeping alone from the time they were babies.
Secondly, on top of reviewing simple tips to get your to baby sleep alone, this post will also review the baby sleep gear you can use to help with the process.
I do want to make it clear that baby sleeping gear alone will not magically get your baby to sleep through the night, but having it will help immensely.
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The Best Baby Sleep Blankets By Age
Let’s start by reviewing the baby sleep gear that will be most useful in getting your baby to sleep alone.
For sleeping blankets you will want different types depending on your baby’s age.
I often hear parents say their babies hate to be swaddled. Well, I also thought one of my twins hated swaddling as well.
She would fight us when we would swaddle her and break out whenever possible. I had given up on it. She was colicky at 2 months old and we were lost at how to get some sleep.
But, then we remembered a friend had given us the DVD “The Happiest Baby on the Block“, so we watched it. This DVD tells you that swaddling is very important, even if your baby doesn’t seem to like it.
We took this advice, and once we figured out how to get our daughter to sleep better (see the baby swing below), she slept longer if she was swaddled tight.
Once your baby is 3 to 6 months old, I highly recommend the Baby Merlin Magic Sleepsuit
The reason the sleepsuit works so well for transitioning to a crib is that it helps keep your baby cozy. It makes the move from from the small sleeping quarters of a bassinet, to the much larger sleeping quarters of a crib less dramatic.
Baby Sleep Blankets After 6 Months Old
After 6 months your baby will grow out of the Baby Merlin sleepsuit. I do not recommend buying the 6-9 month size of this suit.
As soon as your baby is strong enough to roll over with the suit on, you are supposed to transition him out of it.
For this reason, I moved my babies to sleepsacks around 6 months old. The sleepsacks keep your baby warm and provide a safe way to have a “blanket” on your baby.
Sleepsacks are also available in toddler sizes and we continued using them until our kids were approximately 3 years old.
Two huge bonuses for using sleepsacks with toddlers are they add an extra barrier for curious toddlers that want to remove their diaper and/or crawl out of their crib.
Devices To Help Baby Sleep Alone
A baby glider swing was a lifesaver for two out of my three children. There was a one month time frame where this was the only thing they would sleep in at night.
If you’re looking to save money, check out buying a swing used. I was able to get ours on a Facebook swap site.
Your baby will fit in the swing from birth to about 6 months old, but we were able to successfully stop using it by 3 months old.
I like pacifiers because they give you an extra option for helping your baby to sleep alone.
While not necessarily related to sleep, they are also convenient if your baby is fussy when you are traveling or running errands.
One tip for pacifiers, after your baby is 6-9 months old, it can be useful to put more than one in bed with them at night.
If your baby wakes up and his pacifier has fallen, he will cry. You will have to get out of bed, find the pacifier (not always easy), and give it back. An extra pacifier provides a little insurance for a full night’s sleep.
Crib that converts to a toddler bed
Although this does not particularly apply to babies sleeping alone, but rather to toddlers, I still wanted to mention it.
It is not absolutely necessary to get a crib that converts to a toddler bed. But, I thought it made the transition out of a crib easier because the toddler bed will still resemble the look of your toddler’s crib. Plus, you can just keep the same crib mattress.
Something I did when switching over to the toddler bed, was show my kids photos of what their new bed would look like.
This seemed to help them understand what to expect. It also made the transition more exciting and something to look forward to.
Nursery Must Haves To Get Baby To Sleep Alone
Each kids bedroom has a sound machine in our house, that is still used to this day.
It is so helpful to drown out noises elsewhere in the house at both nap time and bedtime. We also take the sound machines when we travel for the same reason.
You will likely use a nightlight for a long time with your children. Now that the twins are 3, it helps make them feel comfortable at night to be able to see.
As babies, it’s nice for parents to have a nightlight so they can see if they go in the baby’s room after dark.
Incorporating a story before bed is a great way to establish a baby bedtime routine. It’s fun for your kids and educational! Check out these 100 best books for babies and toddlers for some wonderful book recommendations.
Looking back at the list of baby sleep gear that will help your baby sleep alone, I thought it was interesting that there are quite a few items we are still using today for our 3 year old twins.
Tips For Getting Your Baby To Sleep Alone
Now that you know the gear to get to help your baby sleep alone, what about tips for how to get your baby to sleep alone?
Here is my list of simple tips to get your baby sleeping alone.
- Set your baby down to sleep when he shows signs of being drowsy from the day you come home with your newborn.
- It’s okay to let your baby cry for a few minutes to see if he will settle down on his own.
- Make sure your baby is appropriately dressed for sleep.
- Establish a 5 minute baby bedtime routine.
- Be consistent and don’t give up. It will probably take at least a few days to a week after implementing these tips before your baby starts sleeping alone.
If you put these tips to use combined with using the baby sleep gear described above, you will get your baby sleeping alone in no time.
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