My child could not sleep at all without being held.
It didn’t matter how deeply he appeared to be asleep in my arms, or how long I waited up until I believed it was safe to put him down. Nor did it matter how and even where I put him down. He would awaken the minute he wasn’t held, take a look around, and hassle to get picked up once again.
And so I wound up getting stuck with a sleeping infant in my arms, immobile for the duration of his sleep. I knew infants liked to be held, but this much? I wanted I might put him down, if not for naps, then a minimum of for the first stretch of sleep at night.
Because absolutely nothing is worse than when your newborn will not oversleep the crib and just in your arms.
Table of Contents
How to get your baby to sleep without being held
1. Don’t keep your child awake too long
2. Put your child down drowsy but awake
3. Let your infant sleep in a snug location
4. Location a heating pad or warm water bottle on the crib
5. Stroke your child’s face
6. Keep your hands on your baby after putting her down
7. Use a pacifier if your child fusses
8. Usage white noise or music
9. Let your child rest awake
When can children go to sleep by themselves?
Can you ruin an infant by holding him too much?
How to get your infant to sleep without being held
Almost every mother can relate to this battle.
Maybe your child demands being held all the time, leaving your arms tired from the weight. You have to nurse or rock him to sleep, just for him to awaken immediately when you put him down. It doesn’t assist that you’re home alone with other kids who require you also.
Now, all of us know the newborn phase isn’t going to be ideal. But, if you’re like me, you’re desperate to see if there’s something you can a minimum of try and do differently to make the situation much easier.
But like numerous first-time mamas, I had no clue what I was doing. I invested lots of sleep-deprived nights glued to my laptop, investigating and reading what worked and didn’t work for other mamas, hoping I might discover my responses.
I attempted a number of strategies, some that came a cropper, and others that actually worked. My boy was still too young to sleep train, much less sleep through the night, but these methods were assisting him sleep longer stretches. Essential, I had my arms back, in some form or another.
So, what do you do when your newborn won’t sleep anywhere however your arms? Take a look at these strategies, and ideally they can work for you also:
1. Don’t keep your baby awake too long
I figured babies just sleep when they’re tired, but I could not have actually been more incorrect. In fact, the times when I kept my child awake for far too long were some of the most tough times. Being overtired implied he had a hard time going to sleep.
I later on discovered that children can’t stay awake for too long. That as soon as the window is up, then you truly need to do whatever it takes to get them to sleep and reset their bodies.
Among the best ways to make certain your child isn’t awake too long is to focus on his baby tired indications. For example, anymore than 3 yawns is already an indication he’s overtired, so put him to sleep as soon as he yawns.
The other way to guarantee he’s not overtired is to simply watch the clock. Note when he awakened, and do not let him be awake after a particular time period.
How long precisely is too long? Well, it depends on your infant’s age. You can download this totally free resource where I share the age and sleep standards, in addition to share more tips about your baby’s awake time. You’ll also get my newsletters, which moms and dads say they LOVE:
” You have no idea how much your emails help me. Very few people are open and real about the newborn stage. All other women around me either do not want to talk about it or have selective amnesia. Your openness is revitalizing. I would announce to my husband when I received another Nina Garcia email and after that eagerly read it, in some cases aloud. I appreciate the candidness, sincerity, and purpose of your newsletters. -From an appreciative new mama, Jill Weathington”
One Mistake You’re Making with Your Baby’s Awake Time
2. Put your child down drowsy however awake
We’re all creatures of habit, getting used to what we’ve constantly done or experienced. If your baby has always fallen asleep in your arms, then it’s not surprising that he sobs when he sleeps any other way.
The top place to begin breaking those routines and associations is by putting him down sleepy but awake. That way, he’ll get to experience dropping off to sleep away from your arms, in the environment he’ll ultimately awaken.
After all, few of us can fall asleep in one location, get transferred to another, and not awaken in the process. The same is true for your child.
He’ll also learn that you don’t have to hold him to drop off to sleep. Again, he’s gotten so utilized to one way of falling asleep– in your arms– that any other way feels odd. By regularly putting him down sleepy but awake, he finds out that it’s alright to drop off to sleep that way, too.
Sure, hold him in your arms, once he begins looking drowsy, set him down where you want him to sleep so he can experience the shift for himself.
Learn what to do when your baby won’t sleep unless held.
Infant Won’t Nap Unless Held
3. Let your baby sleep in a tight location
Disclosure: This post includes affiliate links, which means I will make a commission– at no extra expense to you– if you make a purchase.
Babies discover convenience in tight places, having actually invested so much time in your womb. While the crib is the ideal place to set your infant down, lots of moms and dads have actually found more luck in other, snugger places. These provide the safe sensation of being “cupped” and held, just like in your arms.
Here are a couple of concepts:
4. Location a heating pad or warm water bottle on the baby crib
To go from your warm, comfortable arms to a cold, hard baby crib can be a hard shift for your infant. To make the bed just as inviting, try this technique:
Place a heating pad or a warm water bottle on the baby crib a couple of minutes prior to you plan to set him down. For example, you may warm the bed while he nurses before bedtime. That way, alleviating him out of your arms can still feel relaxing when the bed feels just as nice and warm.
You may even leave the pad or bottle close by for a couple of minutes, so he can still feel it next to him, prior to removing it. And make certain to test the bed first to inspect it isn’t too hot for your child.
Learn how to get your infant to nap in the baby crib instead of your arms
how to get baby to nap in crib instead of arms.
5. Stroke your child’s face
Anxious that your infant will shock and throw a fit the minute you put him down awake?
Attempt this easy technique to help him relax: After putting him down awake, stroke his cheek and forehead up until his eyes close. Maybe you touch his eyebrows, or run your finger from the bridge of his nose to the top of his head. Or you gently stroke his cheeks, moving from nose to ear.
These simple touches can be all it requires to keep him in a drowsy state till he eventually drops off to sleep. Sure, he still requires your aid to sleep, but a minimum of you’re not holding him the whole time.
6. Keep your hands on your infant after putting her down
One of the experiences of being held is that contact with your body, the warmth on her chest as it presses versus yours. But after you put her down, this heat goes away, leaving her exposed.
To mimic that sensation, try a little trick to make that shift easier:
Put her down just as she’s about to sleep, but keep your nestling arm wrapped around her body and your other hand on her chest. If you can, you may even want to lightly keep your chest touching hers, as if you’re still hugging and holding her resting.
Then, as she drifts off to sleep, gradually get rid of and move your cradling arm from underneath while still keeping your other hand on her tummy. And lastly, slowly remove the other hand so she can sleep alone.
Find out 5 things you can do when your newborn wishes to be held all night.
Newborn Wants to Be Held All Night
7. Utilize a pacifier if your infant fusses
As you set him down drowsy, you might notice that your baby starts to fuss. If he requires to a pacifier, this would be a great time to put one in his mouth to encourage sucking. Do not wait up until he’s weeping hysterically– instead, place the pacifier if you see him beginning to squirm or get upset.
Then, keep your hand on him so he still feels you as you hold the pacifier in his mouth. This will advise him that you’re still there, while encouraging him to suck on the pacifier and drop off to sleep.
After you’ve left, keep the pacifier in his mouth. However if you notice him squirming again (or you believe he’s about to awaken), utilize the pacifier again:
If the pacifier fell out, re-insert it into his mouth.
If the pacifier is still in his mouth, give it a gentle “tug.” This will motivate him to suck harder and hopefully keep sleeping.
8. Use white noise or music
Keeping the space totally silent will only invite abrupt noises to surprise your baby awake. Rather, utilize white noise to stifle those noises. Not just will they obstruct those sounds, they’ll also advise him of the consistent hum he heard when he remained in your womb.
You may utilize an app or buy a white noise machine. Possibly you download an app, loop a static music file on your phone, or merely turn on a routine fan or heating system. The white noise will add a continuous hum to encourage constant sleep after you put him down.
Some parents have actually also discovered success with teaching their children to connect calming music to sleeping.
Play music while you nurse at night so he associates it with comfort and drowsiness. Then, keep the music on as you put him down and let him sleep. Ideally, he’ll stay asleep with the music still playing nearby.
Infant sleeping covered with soft blanket
9. Let your infant lie down awake
I erroneously presumed that the minute my baby’s eyes flew wide open after putting him down, that I ‘d need to scoop him support and re-do our routine. Just later on with my twins did I realize that those were chances for him to fall asleep on his own.
Do not feel compelled to choose your infant back up if he goes from sleepy to awake when you put him down. He just might be able to put himself to sleep, particularly if you give him a possibility to. And considered that he’s not even sobbing, you have even less reason to get him out of the crib or bassinet.
Rather, let him lie down, even if he’s awake. He might fuss a little, at which point you can try a pacifier or just let him try to soothe himself. He just may surprise you– as my twins did– by going to sleep on his own.
Speaking of which …
When can infants go to sleep on their own?
Your pediatrician is your best resource to know precisely when your infant can go to sleep on his own. However in general, infants in the newborn phase– the 4th trimester, as they say– still require help dropping off to sleep.
That said, you can still set excellent practices even now that encourage him to sleep separately. Make every very first attempt an opportunity for him to go to sleep on his own (for example, by putting him down sleepy however awake each time).
And if he sobs hysterically? Then yes, scoop him up and try something else. Possibly this time you’ll put him in the swing, carry him in a wrap, or attempt an infant cushion. And if he really isn’t having any of it, then hold him in your arms to assist him sleep.
He might still need help dropping off to sleep a great deal of times, but at least you’re regularly providing him an opportunity to do it on his own, too.
Here’s what to do when your 6 month old infant won’t sleep unless held
6 month old baby will not sleep unless held.
Can you ruin an infant by holding him excessive?
” Spoiling a baby” is relative.
After all, somebody who delights in holding her child to sleep whenever would certainly not object to doing so. In fact, she might even feel guilty for holding her baby, assuming she’s doing a bad job by doing it so often.
So no, you can’t “ruin” a baby by holding him too much.
Rather, the much better concern to ask is this: What expectations are you ready to set?
If you’re fine with holding your child, then by all means, continue doing so. But if you feel an imbalance in between his needs and those of yours, your family, your work, and your house, then something needs to change.
It can be as easy as putting him down more throughout the day– when he is awake– so he understands it’s also alright to be far from your arms. And of course, using the pointers you discovered here to get him utilized to sleeping without being held.
Learn more about what it suggests to have actually a ruined baby
So, how do you get your child to go to sleep on his own? We’ve learned that a lot of it is experimentation, but that it’s completely possible to make your infant sleep on his own.
Make certain you’re not keeping him awake too long, and that you put him down sleepy but awake. Let him oversleep a snug location, or warm his bed before you position him in it. Stroke his face and keep your hands and arms around him as you set him down.
Use a pacifier if he begins to difficulty or gets up earlier than you ‘d desire him to. White noise and music can assist stifle surprising sounds and relieve him to sleep. And finally, let him lie down even if he’s awake– you just might discover him having gone to sleep not long after.
Ideally you’ve found that you can get your child to sleep without being held, after all.
Get more ideas:
How to Get an Overtired Newborn to Sleep
Newborn Not Sleeping? 9 Tricks to Help Your Baby (Finally!) Sleep
How to Burp a Sleeping Baby
What to Do When Your Overtired Baby Keeps Waking Up
How to Establish a Baby Nighttime Routine
Do you deal with getting your newborn to sleep? His awake time just might be impacting how well he sleeps or not. Join my newsletter and get my handout– at no charge to you– and discover one error you may be making with your infant’s awake time.