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11 Answers

Help! My 5 month old so wont let me put him down to sleep. He will only sleep if he is on me. As soon as i try to put him down he wakes and cries. I try to put him down before he’s asleep, but he cries to the point of exhaustion and although we are there to reassure him, it is usually over an hour of screaming and I hate doing that to him. Any advice??


Posted anonymously, 6th August 2017


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  • If he ends up asleep on you when your ready to put him in bed just do it and maybe try a breathing technique around him until he seems relaxed


  • Ur Bub hasn’t learnt to put themselves to sleep and are used to having you there. This will take sleep training and a lot of consistency


  • I went through the same thing. The simple answer is, your baby has not learned how to self settle and self soothe. This is something you need to teach so they can fall asleep on their own. If not taught, they will continue this habit you teach them otherwise. I did sleep training from 5 months old and within 1-2 weeks I just put her down for her nap and she dozes off by herself within 2 minutes. It’s been life changing. If you need more help or advice pls message me :)


  • Maybe getting a Pillsbury music player for his room and adding a night light or a plush toy perhaps trying that might help him sleep.. .


  • A tough one. We all want are kids happy and settled and comfort them when they’re unsettled.
    I’ve found that structure and routine are important and help kids to feel safe as they know what is happening.
    As for the sleep routine this can be a bath and a story before bed or whatever routine works for you. And personally I would advice to not/never feed you baby asleep or let you baby fall asleep on your arm. As soon you feel baby is getting tired and the eyes are dropping, get your baby off your arms and in its bed, a gentle pat on it’s back and then leave. This way you teach your baby to self sooth itself making it less depending of you in this regard.


  • Every baby is different and is going to have different levels of maternal attachment and will take different amounts of time to feel secure and confident to sleep by themselves. It won’t last forever, even though it may feel like it now…

    A co-sleeper bed might be an option in the short-term so that your baby is right next to you in your bedroom. Follow as many of the safe sleeping guidelines as possible but there comes a time when your sleep and sanity needs to be balanced with these guidelines.

    Starting solids can help a baby’s tummy feel full and help with sleeping through the night rather than waking up hungry. Developing an evening routine works for a lot of babies – feed, bath, play then sleep at a similar time. Make sure the room where the baby sleeps is a comfortable temperature neither too hot nor too cold. My baby monitor has an alarm to alert me when the room is too hot or too cold. Swaddle bags and sleeping bags can help babies to feel comforted as if they are being cuddled.

    Lastly, don’t compare yourself to anyone else. If their baby sleeps through the night at 3 months of age then good for them. Your baby will do it when he/she is ready.


  • I just found that finding a good routine and sticking to it worked. Consistency was king.


  • I have no answers but am here to sympathize my miss 11 month old will only sleep in my arms and screams for hours if i try to put her down !


  • An option would be to transition bub from your arms to the bed over a week or two with a predictable routine in baby steps. You could try warming the space you want bub to sleep so it’s not a sudden transition from your arms. You could also start by lying down next to bub and slowly moving further away either once settled or over the period of a few sleeps.


  • A predictable routine during the day really helped her and settled her more easily as she knew what was coming next ???? if you get stressed out he will feel ot, my girl certainly did I just had to be strong and assertive and confident when putting her to bed, sshhing and telling her ‘time for bed now, lie down time for sleep’


  • No easy advice sorry! I had a bub who didnt sleep practically since we got home from the hosputal, she was always a cat napper and woke frequently at night, I pushed on until 12 months (god knows how!?!) And then said I couldnt do it anymore! I got a referral to tresillian sleep school in sydney which was a 3 month wait list and it literally saved us! Before getting there my girl was waking 12 times at night and would scream horrifically of I put her in her cot awake, really really scream and absolutely histerical! Day 1 at tresilian was very difficult and first attempt at getting her down failed. Second onwards worked standing and patting her and reassuring her for about an hour untill she fell asleep, on day 3 I was able to pat her and sing to her until she was calm and walk out and just reassure her out of sight by the door, she would cry and talk which is her way of self settling but wouldnt scream (if she did i would go i and settle her again) if after 3 times she didnt settle then i would rub and pat her to sleep and try next time. Biggest rule for me going there was absolutely not to feed to sleep as that was the source of mine and many other mums i spoke to there problems… on the 5th day she was settling herself and had slept through the night by day 3! Creating a calm peaceful routine helps and preparing them, patting and singing as long as they go in their cot their less likely to wake up and get upset that their not where they fell asleep. Sorry for the long post! Hope it helps even a little?


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