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Tag Archives: self-soothing

  • Why Self-Soothing is Important (and 5 Tips How)

    Self-Soothing is ImportantSelf-soothing is an important skill that all babies have to learn eventually. It’s how we all calm ourselves so we can fall back asleep. During the first few months of life, mom and/or dad do all of the soothing. They nurse, comfort, rock or sing to babies to get them to relax.

    But imagine you’re a baby. One minute you fall asleep in mom’s loving arms, the next you wake up alone in a crib. That can be scary! If baby wakes up where she went to sleep, she’ll be relaxed and inclined to fall back asleep.

    But you want your baby to learn to do it on their own at some point so you can actually get a full night’s sleep. They can self-soothe in a number of ways: thumb-sucking, reinserting a pacifier, rubbing a special blanket, or anything else they find calming.

    When do babies learn to self-soothe?

    When babies are born, they aren’t capable of regulating their emotions. They need parents to step in and comfort them when they become angry or scared or frustrated or tired. Some babies gain the ability to self-soothe around three months old. Most have it by six months. You want to start working at self-soothing by six months before any strong sleep associations have formed.

    Why should babies self-soothe?

    Simply, for better sleep! Babies who self-soothe sleep longer and with fewer interruptions. When they wake during non-feeding times, they can quickly fall asleep without waking up anyone else. Plus mom and dad get some sleep too!

    Self-soothing does NOT mean ignoring your baby or letting her cry until she falls asleep.

    How does one teach a baby to self-soothe?

    It’s pretty simple, but you have to stick with it. Once you commit to teaching self-soothing, stick with it unless you think your baby is too young to learn, then you should wait a few more weeks.

    1. Wean baby from the swaddle. They usually need their hands free to self-soothe. That’s why the Slumber Sleeper is perfect, because baby feels safe and secure, but her hands are free to get to her mouth.
    2. Create a strong, consistent sleep routine. There should be a strong signal that it’s sleep time (for night sleep and naps) and several steps that lead to sleep so baby understands the cues.
    3. Lay baby down drowsy, but awake. You want baby to fall asleep without mom or dad’s arms. It might take her a few more minutes to fall asleep, but that’s OK. The goal is to get baby to fall into sleep on her own.
    4. Don’t rush into baby’s room at the first cry. You want to get her a minute or two to self-soothe before you do it for her.
    5. Teach self-soothing before age one. Children who never learn to soothe until after one year old have trouble doing it until they are as old as four.

    safe sleep solutionWritten by Joanna von Yurt, Certified Pediatric Sleep Consultant and Co-Founder and CEO of Swanling Innovations Inc.

    Joanna von Yurt is the mother of three intelligent, sensitive, and compassionate girls (who all want to be mommies when they grow up). She is first AND foremost a mom! Professionally, however, she is an accountant, controller and serial entrepreneur.

    Joanna has a degree in Psychology from Harvard University with an emphasis in child psychology. She worked as an infant caregiver for 12 years and interned as a Child Life Specialist, family/social therapist, and assisted in clinical studies involving children’s personality and social psychology. Joanna is a Certified Sudden Infant Death (SIDS) Prevention Professionals, Safe Sleep Educator, Member of the International Association of Child Sleep Consultants, Member of the National Sleep Foundation, and Member of the Canadian Sleep Society.

    Joanna has a lifelong passion for childcare and child safety. She enjoys sharing her experiences with other parents about sleep routines, attachment parenting, safe sleep guidelines, and children’s natural sleep patterns. Her company, Swanling Innovations, is committed to producing modern, safe and innovative products that meet the expectations of discerning parents. The Slumber Sleeper™ is a 4-in 1 safe sleep solution (mattress protector, flat sheet, fitted sheet and sleep sack all in one) designed to help keep your baby safe, warm and centered.

    Joanna always says that a well-rested child and well-rested parents add up to a happy family!

    Visit www.swanling.com for more information.

    Interested in writing a guest blog for Swanling? Send your topic idea to pr@swanling.com.

    All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Swanling makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

  • Three Ways to Teach Baby to Self-Soothe

    teach baby to self-sootheIt’s no secret – keeping a baby happy and comfortable at all times is not always easy and the only way a baby lets us know something is wrong is by crying. Babies will cry for various reasons, but figuring out exactly what that reason may be is the difficult part. When the crying starts, you will need to know how to soothe your child as best as you can, but it’s also important to allow your baby to learn self-soothing skills. Here are three ways you can teach your baby to self-soothe.

    1. Create a Soothing Routine

    While you may not be able to directly teach your child to soothe itself at first, you can set the proper environment to allow them to learn as they go. This all starts with a habitual bedtime routine or as what child sleep consultants like to call a “soothing routine.” With a routine, your child will become accustomed to it as they begin to grow and develop.

    An important factor in creating a soothing routine is to choose a single bedtime each night to set your baby’s internal clock which they will get used to.  Also, the preparation for bed should include a couple consistent activities as well, which can include things like taking a warm bath, dimming the lights, and cuddling a little.

    As you begin to go through the bedtime soothing routine, baby’s body will begin to respond and become drowsy. If you’re consistent, you’ll find your child start to fall asleep as you begin.

    2. Drift Away

    While your child may not be able to fall asleep at night without the comfort of your arms around them, you need to keep your main goal in mind:  teaching your child to self-soothe. However, with the help and soothing properties of the Slumber Sleeper, your child gets the advantage of feeling like they are being held while at the same time learning to sleep independently. Children need to know that you aren’t going to be able to stay right by their side at all hours of the night and by giving them the soothing comfort of the Slumber Sleeper, they do fall asleep quicker and sleep for longer periods of time. Parents no longer need to play the distance game to help with separation as the child goes to bed already feeling secure and held. Children happily fall asleep on their own paving the way to a healthier and more independent sleep training.

    Wherever possible, avoid letting your child fall asleep in your arms. Look for “sleepy cues” to know when baby is tired in order to place him or her in the crib to fall asleep alone. You do not want to wait until baby is overtired.  Some sleepy cues are:

    • rubbing eyes,
    • slight quieting,
    • rooting or wanting to nurse,
    • asking for a bottle, pacifier or lovey,
    • gazing off,
    • decreased activity,
    • sucking is weaker or slower,
    • quieter,
    • disinterested in surroundings,
    • eyes less focused,
    • yawning,
    • less movement of arms and legs,
    • droopy eyelids,
    • thumb sucking, and
    • pulling ears.

    If baby cries after you place them in the crib, use shushing sounds to soothe baby and leave the room to help them learn to self-soothe. The Baby Sleep Whisperer displays this well in this video helping baby sleep in her own crib. This will prevent your child from becoming conditioned to fall asleep only in your arms.

    3. Swaddle and Then Wean from the Swaddle

    Swaddling in the “hands over heart” position is the natural position baby is used to while in the womb. In this position, baby can use their hands and fingers to self-sooth and settle themselves down. Further, the fetal tuck position is soothing to the child as its is the natural position of infants and helps your baby to thrive and grow strong. The Slumber Swaddle is one of the few swaddle blankets on the market that not only offers the hands to heart placement, but it further allows self soothing or finger sucking if needed. Being able to use a swaddle blanket that gives your child these soothing qualities is not only fundamental but it gives parents peace of mind and sleep as well.

    When baby begins to roll, it’s no longer safe to swaddle. Some parents dread the transition, but weaning baby from swaddling is a big part of self-soothing since baby is able to move freely, interact with their surroundings, and have their hands free to move around. To help baby transition out of swaddling, use the Slumber Sleeper™ sleep system to continue to provide safety, security and comfort for baby, further it allows for arms-free, safe sleep for children.

    safe sleep solutionWritten by Joanna von Yurt, Co-Founder and CEO of Swanling Innovations Inc.

    Joanna von Yurt is the mother of three intelligent, sensitive, and compassionate girls (who all want to be mommies when they grow up). She is first AND foremost a mom! Professionally, however, she is an accountant, controller and serial entrepreneur.

    Joanna has a degree in Psychology from Harvard University with an emphasis in child psychology. She worked as an infant caregiver for 12 years and interned as a Child Life Specialist, family/social therapist, and assisted in clinical studies involving children’s personality and social psychology.

    Joanna has a lifelong passion for childcare and child safety. She enjoys sharing her experiences with other parents about sleep routines, attachment parenting, safe sleep guidelines, and children’s natural sleep patterns. Her company, Swanling Innovations, is committed to producing modern, safe and innovative products that meet the expectations of discerning parents. The Slumber Sleeper™ is a 4-in 1 safe sleep solution (mattress protector, flat sheet, fitted sheet and sleep sack all in one) designed to help keep your baby safe, warm and centered.

    Joanna always says that a well-rested child and well-rested parents add up to a happy family!

    Visit www.swanling.com for more information.

    Interested in writing a guest blog for Swanling? Send your topic idea to pr@swanling.com.

    All data and information provided on this site is for informational purposes only. Swanling makes no representations as to accuracy, completeness, current-ness, suitability, or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis.

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