How To Teach Your Baby To Sleep Through The Night

How to Teach Your Baby to Sleep Through the Night

Yes, you CAN teach your baby to sleep through the night. Sleep expert Emma Purdue shows us how

5 min read

 Baby –  Expert Article by Emma Purdue

Firstly, address the day before you address the night

If your babies naps are all over the show – some days baby naps for 1 hour all day, some days 3 hours, some days all naps are in the car, some days all naps are in babies cot – then this kind of inconsistency doesn’t sit well with many babies. Some babies will strive on just going with the flow, most need a little more structure to their day.

So have a look at your babies naps and aim to stay home for all naps for a couple of days – working on nap length being more than one sleep cycle (more than 45 minutes) and if they are under 5 months old – 3 naps a day.

Once you feel your babies’ daytime sleep has improved and they are settling easily for all naps, but still not sleeping well at night, you can head to point two…

Look At How Your Baby Is Settling For Sleep

Look at how your baby is settling for sleep

Does baby require you every time? Is your breast your babies sleep prop? Is your baby needing a dummy for every sleep? Are you getting up every 2 hours to pop it back in?

If your baby needs you to settle back to sleep then gently withdraw how much you assist your baby to sleep over a few weeks. Use the dummy less – feed less, rock less, work on self-settling. I don’t mean leave your baby to cry alone for extended periods of time.

Maybe Your Baby Is Hungry At Night

Could your baby be hungry at night?

If your baby wakes at 10pm, 3am and then you start your day at 7am – does your baby take a full feed at 7am? Yes? Then your baby still needs that 3am feed. If your baby refuses the 7am feed – you know you can wean your baby off the 3am feed.

If your baby wakes 2 hourly over night and demands to be fed back to sleep, unless they are under 4kg – this is probably not genuine hunger.

Some babies will take one night feed until they are well established on solid food. Remember if your babies night time wake ups and feeds don’t bother you, don’t worry about societies pressure to make your baby sleep through. Yes they can sleep longer – but don’t try to fix what you don’t consider broken.

Check The Sleep Environment

Check the sleep environment

Is your babies sleep environment warm enough? Cool enough? Are they swaddled if this is age appropriate, is it dark enough, quiet enough? Would they benefit from some white noise to block out the pub next door? Do they need a sleeping bag to keep warm? Is the street light shining right into their room?

A Good Night's Sleep For You & Your Baby

Free Phone Consultation With A Sleep Consultant

Me and my team of Sleep Consultants have been where you are. You don’t need to continue to struggle with your baby’s sleep. We can help with home visits, phone, and email support. Request a free 15-minute phone consultation and let’s have a chat to see how we can help you.

Stop. Then listen

If your baby is over 6 weeks old then take pause when they wake up at night. Stop. Listen – then react. Don’t rush to pick them up. If you only fed them 1 hour ago and they are crying, is it wind? Has their swaddle come undone? Are they grizzling back to sleep now that you have stopped to listen?

Offer your voice as first point of soothing, if this doesn’t help, or is helping a little, try soothing them with some gently touch in their cot. If this is working then chances are it was not hunger waking them up.

Is your baby’s bedtime early enough?

Often a bed time before 7pm is required well up until 1 year old. Over-tired babies no not sleep well.


Expert Profile: Emma Purdue

Educator, Mentor and Sleep Expert

Emma is a mother of three and founder of Baby Sleep Consultant Ltd, helping thousands of babies in New Zealand and Australia to rest peacefully. Emma has written for many baby and parenthood magazines and is indisputably considered an international expert on sleep.

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