This suck to sleep thing???

Quite often during a consult we will find that the bottle, breast & dummy are some of the most common causes for overnight wakes... If your baby needs one or any of the above and cannot fall asleep without sucking, then your Baby has what we call in baby sleep land- A suck to sleep association... Some parents are happy to wait it out for baby to stop in their own time, for others its a constant battle with baby waking every hour or two- causing anxiety, stress and total sleep deprivation for the entire family! 

Its not all bad, take the dummy for example- As your child moves on from the newborn phase & increases their muscular strength & eye-hand co ordination, Baby is able to learn to take the dummy in & out of their mouth. By scattering dummies in the cot or using a dummy blanket (google sleepy-tot), you can teach baby to successfully find their dummies independently during overnight wakes- Another alternative is to make a game out of putting Baby's dummy into their hand & guiding the dummy to their mouth.. The idea is for baby to independently settle, without Mum & Dad getting up ten times per night replacing the dummy

The bottle & breast are another story... Its something that your baby can't use independently without intervention from Parent/ Caregiver. If baby is falling asleep at the bottle or breast, when they wake, Baby wants the same sleep assistance he or she fell asleep with (cue bottle/breast)

How to stop it?  We have listed a couple of strategies below: 

* Follow a Feed, Play, Sleep routine (we have these available on our website under the Shop Now section) 

* Start slow if your not ready to go cold turkey

* Decrease the amount of Bottles / Breastfeeds overnight over several nights till desired feeds are achieved

* Keep overnight feeds in line with baby's age - A baby that is six months old, on track growth and development wise and has solids established shouldn't require feeds overnight 

And finally... BE CONSISTENT... Change takes time xx 

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