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What is Sleep Training?

Sleep training in essence is teaching a baby to sleep independently which is a step in the right direction of them sleeping through the night.

There is a vast difference between different sleep training methods which is how “sleep training” can sometimes be given a bad name. With that in mind, it’s important to find the right method for you and your baby.


Things to consider are:

  • Is your baby over six months and well?

  • How quickly do you want results?

  • Are you doing it solo or is your partner able to help?

  • How confident are you that you’re nailing the baby’s days?


You should only embark on the gentlest of sleep training methods from four months and absolutely no sleep training before then. The majority of sleep training should be done from six months. Babies aren’t able to regulate themselves before them so it’s unfair to expect them to be able to respond positively to it.


Essentially the harsher methods will have quicker results. However, the results are arguably more the baby learning that crying doesn’t elicit a response, rather than them learning how to love sleep and enjoy sleeping independently. It’s not always the case, but often parents of those babies who have been “sleep trained” with harsher methods find that when their baby has been ill or has had a reason to need more support then even when their baby is better they have to go through the sleep training again.


It will take longer, but if you can support your baby and give them the tools to become a good sleeper on their own, then they are more likely to be able to get through any illnesses/teething etc. without it impacting their sleep thereafter.


If your partner is able to help it may sway what sort of sleep training you do - the support is great for you and you may find that your little one reacts differently to you responding to them versus your partner.


It’s so important to be confident that your baby’s days are spot on before you embark on any sleep training. You may find that just a few little tweaks to your day sort out the majority of the night wakings without you having to do anything different to what you’re currently doing at night. You want to have the days nailed to give your babe the best chance of having a good night.

Author: Jess - The Sleepy Avocado


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