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  1. #1
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    Default Sleeping through the night - milestone or something taught?

    JUst wanted to know what many of you think.

    Do you think sleeping through the night is:

    a) a biological milestone? Something the infant will do on their own when they are ready without any intervention from you. You know ....the scenario where you put them to bed at night and then wake the next morning (completely surprised) you jump out of bed to make sure they're still breathing etc.

    OR

    b) something you can teach your infant to do - i.e. sleep training etc?


    For arguments sake (in this case) - in saying "sleeping through the night" I mean a minimum of 9 hours uninterrupted sleep. Example - infant asleep at 8pm then next woke at 5am not requiring parental intervention overnight.

    I guess this question refers more to older infants rather than newborns.

    I am aware text book definition of sleeping through the night is 5-6 hrs sleep ...but for this particular thread, I am referring to a minimum 9 hrs sleep.

    What are your experiences and thoughts?

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    I think it's taught. I worked hard to get my DD to sleep well and she started sleeping 12 hours from 9 weeks old. I stuck to a schedule, had a bedtime routine and made sure we got up at the same time each day. She's been a great little sleeper ever since.

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    IMO milestone. The same way you wouldn't push a baby to eat three solid meals, crawl, walk, talk and toilet train until they exhibited signs or were ready for it.

    You might encourage it or tweak a few things but I wouldn't train a kid to do anything till they were ready.

    So I have an 19mth old that wears knickers during the day and wakes up overnight to wee so as not not wet her nappy. So no she doesn't sleep thru but she was ready for toileting when I introduced the potty at 12mths but not sleeping 9hrs+. She sleeps 7.30 ish -6ish with a couple of wake ups for water and potty time.

    This is just my opinion.

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    I don't know... I think a very few mums are lucky and their kids sleep through without being taught and then there are kids that needs to be taught. I taught DS to sleep through. I was very persistent. He now sleeps from 7pm to 7:30am, sometimes even 8:30am.

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    Well in my experience....

    Having had 5 babies in a five year period I'm definitely going to say it's a completely individual milestone and regardless of any 'training' program or 'routine' a baby will only sleep through when they are ready too.

    Oliver started 'sleeping through' at about 5 months
    Jordan was 9 months... and they are identical twins.... with exactly the same routines and treatments.

    Gabriel was 7 months

    Julian was 12 months

    Lysander was 15 months.

    However... I'm using the term 'sleeping through' very very lightly as children DO NOT sleep through consistently. They wake when they are sick, teething, beginning to crawl, developing anxieties, developing more active imaginations, becoming more social, becoming aware of their toileting habits.. etc etc etc...

    In my personal experience I'd have to say the 'magic' age for a child going to bed at bedtime, and sleeping in their own bed all night, taking themselves to and from the toilet if needs be without assistance, getting a drink without assistance... so basically allowing YOU to sleep through... is 4yrs old.

    And I've always used the exact same settling techniques and bedtime routines for all of them... and still do. Dinner at 6, bath, teeth, books, songs and cuddles and I stay with them till they are asleep (which of course for my seven year olds means their door is open, and for my 3 yr old means I lie with him on his bed next to the wall which adjoins the 7yr olds room, and for my 4yr old means being in the same room as him as he and the 3yr old have bunks... and the baby goes to bed earlier, so he gets me to himself)
    Last edited by OJandMe; 18-03-2012 at 20:41.

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    I think all kids are different but it's kinda both. Even teaching them the difference between night and day and the use of sleep cues helps to scaffold their night sleeping. Lots of people seem to have success with routines but if a child is not ready to do it then maybe it just takes time.

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    Milestone.

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    I think it's a milestone.. I never had to teach my kids.. They just started going longer stretches without feeds

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    For my son it was a milestone.

    It took a bit of work to make bedtime a little quicker/calmer, but sleeping through was all him.

    Even now, he sometimes wakes up, but when he does, there is something wrong. It's not just 'attention' or 'habit', because when he does wake, I sooth him, feed him, do as he needs, and once his teething, tummy ache etc etc passes, he sleeps the night again.

    I'm a strong beleiver that kids wake for a real reason.

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    I think it's a milestone. That said I still think there are a few things you can do to help such as having a bed time routine and making them feel safe and secure in their sleeping environment. After that I think they sleep through the night in their own time. For my DS it was 14 months.


 

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