Your baby's sleep routine affects the whole family. As used on Supernanny, this technique helps you tell a cry for attention from a distress cry, and gives you the tools to gradually make your baby less dependent on you at night time...
What sort of cry?
Before you start, spend some time learning to differentiate between your baby’s cries. Once you are confident you can recognise when your baby is crying for comfort and attention, not to tell you he's unwell, you can begin. If a baby is looking for comfort he will often cry and pause, like he's listening for you to come, and the crying may become more angry-sounding than distressed sobbing.
- When your baby wakes, listen to him cry to make sure he is not distressed. If you're confident it is a comfort cry, wait for two minutes, then go to him and soothe him with gentle noises and a smooth of the back. Keep the room dark and don’t make eye contact. Once he is calm but before he has fallen asleep again, leave the room.
- Repeat if the baby wakes again, this time waiting for four minutes before going to him, and doubling the period each subsequent time he wakes.
Listening to your baby cry can be harrowing and upsetting, so make sure you have the support of your partner or ask a friend to stay with you whilst you try this technique. You should begin to see some improvement in one week, but be prepared to keep this technique up for three weeks if necessary.
Tried controlled crying with your baby? Did it work for you? Email us or share your story in our Forum.
- When Your Baby Cries: This checklist will help you find out what’s wrong with your baby and give some tried and tested ways to quieten him down.
- The Newborn Baby: The love and attention babies receive in their first few months of life plays a vital part in determining how their brains and bodies develop.
- Sleep Separation Technique: As seen on the show, ‘Sleep Separation’ helps your child to get to sleep by herself, so you can get some proper rest.
- Bedtime Routine: As seen on the show, the Bedtime Routine ensures your child gets enough sleep, while you get time to yourself…
- When Controlled Crying Doesn't Work: Experts from the Millpond Sleep Clinic answer your questions.
- Forum: Share advice on this and other parenting topics in our discussion forum.