When to begin sleep training?
Updated: Feb 10, 2018
Sleep training can begin at 4 months of age!
Once we begin to see social smiles from our baby (not just those gas or dream smiles!) we can begin to observe our baby's sleepy cues and begin to work on consolidating sleep.
4 months is when circadian rhythms begin to develop and when the production of melatonin has been established in your baby, thus providing us with fertile grounds to begin implementing sleep practices.
HOWEVER, it is never too early to begin to teach our babies how to self-soothe and to be putting our babies to bed when they are still awake. Putting baby to bed when awake and leaving the room even in the first days and weeks is the beginning of teaching baby how to put themselves to sleep. We do not leave baby crying at this age, but we don't have to skip the stairs and trip over the dog to rescue them from crying a wee bit until we arrive at their side (yes, new parents do this...I did too!).
Sleep after 4 months will include longer stretches at night (5-6 hours...YAY!) and some longer nap times. Around 5-6 months, we will begin to shift bed time to an earlier time and really tidy up those naps into 3 distinguished periods of daytime sleep until they reach about 8 months of age.