My third title for Netmums, Baby Sleep Solutions does exactly what it says on the tin. In common with all the Netmums books, it’s doesn’t prescribe one definitive way of doing things: it just outlines all the different paths – and guides you gently down whichever you choose to take.
You can buy it here >
Here’s a quick peek inside the book…
Why is sleep such a big deal anyway?
Six months marks a major turning point in your baby’s first year. It’s now that you can seek some real sleep solutions if you want to – if your baby won’t settle in the evening or is waking at night – in the form of sleep training.
Most, experts believe you should wait until the six month point before embarking on a programme like those outlined below. Waiting until then means you can rest assured your baby is quite ready, because a normal, healthy six-month-old who’s begun to take solid food in the day will be physiologically capable of settling herself to sleep at bedtime, and back to sleep in the night, without a feed. And at six months – as long as she’s getting loads of love and cuddles from you in the daytime – she should also be emotionally secure enough to cope without you at bedtime and throughout the night, too.
It’s always worth ruling out any medical causes – there’s more on these in chapter seven, and you should see your GP if in any doubt – but, in most cases, a baby of six months who’s repeatedly unable to settle to sleep alone in the evening, or after waking in the night (or both) will be doing so due to habit. She’s probably become used to you providing her with a feed, cuddle, attention of some sort, or whatever other sleep ‘cue’ or ‘association’ she needs to get her off, or back, to sleep. You just need to teach her that she doesn’t actually need these things… and that she can get back to sleep all on her own.
While rarely easy – and sometimes very hard indeed – sleep training should be viewed as a challenging but short-term solution to a long-term problem, which, for most people, simply can’t go on without their physical or emotional health being compromised. And parents who make a success of sleep training rarely look back: once you’re getting a good night’s sleep, every night, you begin to understand that the hassle of sleep training was a small and necessary price to pay.