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Getting Babies to Sleep

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Recently, I was interviewed by online editor and blogger Lisa Tabachnick Hotta about babies and sleep for parentscanada.com. I think most of you know that I am a fan of sleep expert Dr. Weissbluth. However, on my site I mostly talk about the Cry It Out ( CIO) method for sleep issues and not about much else.

For me, the CIO methods is not a starting point in sleep training, and I realize now that I have not made that clear to people who visit my site. Lisa and I chatted about learning infant sleep patterns and how to harmonize your attempts at sleep training to coincide with the baby’s circadian rhythms. Sound complicated? Take 5 minutes to listen to Dr. Weissbluth explain it himself.

About Alyson

Alyson has been blogging parenting advice for over 15 years. She has been a panelist at BlogWest, Blissdom, #140NYC and more. Her content appears on sites across Canada and the US, but you can read all her own blog posts right here.

More about Alyson

6 Responses to “Getting Babies to Sleep”

  1. Christine

    What he says makes no sense to me with encouraging CIO. He encourages reading your child, and seeing when THEY, the individual child, need to sleep and need to be awake. He’s discussing paying attention to your particular child’s needs.
    CIO is a way of forcing a child to sleep when they DON’T need to. A child who is ready to sleep, especially when the parents are in tune with their child and don’t allow them to reach irrational exhaustion, will go to sleep with little or NO crying, but instead, a calm routine of rocking, singing or nursing. He said “Babies will cry less,” when you’re paying attention to their schedules and natural sleep rhythms. This goes AGAINST your advice of CIO.
    CIO also teaches mothers to watch the clock, or decide the time for sleep by THEIR OWN schedule and NOT their infant’s natural rhythm. This is also non-conducive to the sleep schedules he was discussing.
    Anyone who needs to resort to CIO to get their baby to sleep is NOT watching their child for signs of patterns – instead, according to this guy, they’d be forcing the baby to sleep when they’re NOT naturally tired.

    Reply
  2. John

    “For me, the CIO methods is not a starting point in sleep training and I realize now that I have not made that clear to people who visit my site.”
    So, Alyson, you think the CIO method is effective, just not for young babies?

    Reply
  3. Alyson

    Hi John,
    Thank you for that question – It was so clearly stated and I can give you a definitive answer: you are correct. its not for young babies. I recommend the 5 S’s of soothing from Dr Harvey Karp for the little babes. I have been so misunderstood on this matter. What is your your site?
    Alyson

    Reply
  4. John

    Alyson, thank you for your reply. I don’t have a site, my wife and I are just interested in sleep techniques (and making sure we’re doing good things for our baby) and came across your site while researching. We have used the CIO method and it has worked for us…but we have friends with younger babies and, as we suspected, telling them about our method isn’t the best for their young babies…yet! We have seen Dr. Harvey’s book but not read it. I will recommend they check out his 5S’s. The difference of a few months in age in babies is huge during the first year – our baby is sleeping better because she’s older, not because she’s a better baby. Thanks, again.

    Reply
  5. sadmomma

    Hey there; I am searching for answers regarding my 18mo old toddler. I read in your tips that you suggest the CIO method for babies. What age group does this apply to? My “baby” was the best sleeper, went to bed in her crib on her own with very minimal fuss since 3 months old. But within the last 6-8 weeks, she’s going to bed with a huge fuss. Crying, shaking and ultimately vomiting everywhere….herself, jammies, crib sheets, the carpet. It’s a mess. There is no minimal clean up…it’s a total overhaul. I’ve tried taking additional time with her to prep her for bedtime and letting her cry to 3-4 minutes at a time; checking on her and giving her a reassuring whisper and quick kiss. But within another 3-4 minutes….vomit everywhere. As much as I hate to deal with puke, I would rather be the one to buffer her. I work from home, and much of what I do is done after the kids have gone to bed. Aside from the distress this CIO/Vomit is causing, it’s really putting a wrench in the whole family, as well as my business. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    Reply
  6. moby wrap

    babies need to feel you and they go off to sleep if they are otehrwise comfortable.

    Reply

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