Monday, October 29, 2012

Ferberizing Jacob - the basics

If you're like me, you like to hear other people's experiences before jumping into something yourself.  And I don't want the fluffy version, I want all the full-blown, nitty-gritty details. So, for you moms that are desperately searching for sleep training advice and/or you go!

As I mentioned in my Day 1 post, we are sleep training and weaning from the swaddle and night feedings, so we had more to tackle than just a crappy sleeper.

The Ferber method allows for brief visits from mom and dad to reassure baby that you're still there, that you love them and that everything will be okay. I'm a firm believer in doing things right the first time, which is why I knew CIO was the best route, but I liked the visits allowed through Ferber. Below is a quick summary or breakdown of what we did. This isn't exactly Ferber's rules, we changed a few things to fit our comfort level.

  • Put baby in crib drowsy, but awake. They should fall asleep the same way in which they will wake in the middle of the night/nap.
  • We use a noise machine, and since starting this we've been giving Jacob an Aden+Anais blanket, since they are thin and breathable. We've noticed that Jacob likes to cover his face with the blanket (which is funny, because I do the same thing!), so we are very careful to watch him and move it before going to bed.
  • When baby starts crying, start the timer and wait for the following intervals before visiting baby...
Number of minutes to wait before responding to your child
Day 1 - 3 min (1st wait); 5 min (2nd wait); 10 min (3rd wait); 10 min (subsequent waits)
Day 2 – 5 min; 10 min; 12 min; 12 min...
Day 3 – 10 min; 12 min; 15 min; 15 min...
Day 4 – 12 min; 15 min; 17 min; 17 min...
Day 5 – 15 min; 17 min; 20 min; 20 min...
Day 6 – 17 min; 20 min; 25 min; 25 min...
Day 7 – 20 min; 25 min; 30 min; 30 min...

  • When you reach the maximum number of minutes to wait for a night, continue to leave the room for the same interval until baby falls asleep while you are out of the room.
  • If baby wakes during the night, restart the schedule from the first waiting time and work up to the maximum.
  • Continue this routine after each waking until a time in the morning (usually 5 or 6 am) after which it is unlikely baby will fall back asleep.
  • Naptime: Use the same waiting schedule for naps, but if baby hasn’t fallen asleep after an hour, or if he is awake again and crying, end the nap. If he hasn't slept much during the day (parent's discretion), initiate an "emergency nap", use old nap time approach, to avoid an overtired baby at bedtime.
We're on Day 6 now, and I've noticed significant improvement.  Today I feel bright-eyed and bushy-tailed.  Such a great feeling!  We still have a few kinks to work out, but I'll post our final summary when we're all done.

Good luck!

No comments:

Post a Comment