Baby Sleep Tips: what sleeping like a baby really means

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  • June 22, 2010

baby sleep tips

Baby Sleep Tips:

Secret #6 -Babies are notoriously “light” sleepers

The big difference between baby sleep and adult sleep is, until they’re around two years old, babies log more REM sleep, which is when they dream, and also when they may wake up a bit. It’s during such partial arousals they may realize they can’t get back to sleep–unless, that is, they’ve learned how. That’s why it’s important for a baby to be able to put herself to sleep–otherwise she’ll need you to come help her every time she wakes up.
Excerpt from 52 Sleep Secrets for Babies
Kim West
Kim is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who has been a practicing child and family therapist for more than 24 years, and the creator of the original gentle, proven method to get a good night’s sleep for you and your child. She is the author of The Sleep Lady's Good Night Sleep Tight, its companion Workbook and 52 Sleep Secrets for Babies. Click here to read more about her.

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  • Lisa says:

    Our son is 51/2 years old. We probably have been making mistakes along the way as parents when it comes to his sleeping. He has always been great at going to bed and falling to sleep. However, he has never slept through the night. He wakes up 2, 3 and even 4 times each night calling for us. We go in re-cover him, give him a kiss, address his need(s) drink of water etc. and he goes back to sleep. The problem is we have not had a full night sleep in 51/2 years. I feel we created this problem and he doesn’t know how to put himself back to sleep or just needs to feel secure that we are there. His bedroom is on the other side of our small ranch style house. If we are on vacation and he is sleeping in the same room as us, he wakes up less often. How can we remedy this? We are desperate for a good nights sleep, and are physically and emotionally exhausted. Can you help us?

    • KimWest says:

      Absolutely I can help you! It is never too late to improve your child’s sleep habits! Yes, it might take a tad bit longer with a 5 year old but its not impossible. I would read his age chapter in “Good Night, Sleep Tight” and then create a sleep manner chart, have a family meeting and start the Sleep Lady Shuffle! Explain that once lights are out there will be no more bedside service. Put a sippy cup of water by his bed and remind him that he can help himself to it anytime he needs a drink of water. You will also have to tell him to pull his covers up himself. You will of course be going to him each time he wakes up and sitting in your Shuffle position. You will want to remind him of his sleep manners every night at bedtime and in the morning. Its all outlined in great detail in my book and workbook. The good news is that at 5 1/2 years old you have language to your advantage!