Baby Sleep and sleep training comes in all shapes and sizes and has been a parenting chore since the first days human walked on this planet. Our ancestors had their tricks and hacks to put us to sleep but as time moved forward, life styles changed so did the various practices involving putting babies to sleep. One of the most talked about method in our times is the Ferber sleep method also called the Ferberizing.
This method was first devised by Richard Ferber a physician and the director of The Center for Pediatric Sleep Disorders, at Children’s Hospital Boston. Arguably this can be the best method to train your baby for sleep and is being practiced by millions of parents around the world. Lets unpack this practice and help understand the nitty-gritty, suitability and see exactly how it works, in the following paragraphs.
Like all the sleep methods we know, the Ferber Sleep method also focuses on making your child self dependent on sleeping through the night by himself and even if he wakes up, he puts himself back to sleep , without the parents involvement. In this method, as part of your bedtime routine you put the baby in bed awake and leaving him (even if he cries) for gradually longer periods of time. As per Ferber, putting a child to bed awake is crucial to teaching him successfully to go to sleep on his own. Parents then pat the child after each predetermined period of time but not to pick up or feed their baby. The time periods can vary as per the comfort of parents and how many days you have been practicing the method. An ideal situation will result into babies learn to fall asleep on their own, having realized that crying earns nothing more than a brief check from you.
How Does Ferberizing Work?
Start by laying down the child awake but drowsy on the bed at the bedtime and then proceed to exiting he room. If the child starts crying step into room and comfort him and leave as soon as he is back to normal. If the child did not cerate any fuss, stay outside or away from his visibility. From there, every night you would gradually increase the time between your checks, allowing your child more and more time to fall asleep independently.Your plan for timed check-ins may look something like this:
- Day 1 – 3 min (1st interval); 5 min (2nd interval); 10 min (3rd interval); 10 min (remaining intervals)
- Day 2 – 5 min; 10 min; 12 min; 12 min
- Day 3 – 10 min; 12 min; 15 min; 15 min
- Day 4 – 12 min; 15 min; 17 min; 17 min
- Day 5 – 15 min; 17 min; 20 min; 20 min
- Day 6 – 17 min; 20 min; 25 min; 25 min
- Day 7 – 20 min; 25 min; 30 min; 30 min
The above is more of an ideal pace and can be considered fat for normal routine. But this can be varied as per the parents comfort and overall progress that the child shows.
Is Ferberizing Safe?
In general, yes. If the baby cries for small durations and gets parental comfort to regularize his self sleep potential, then your on the right track. However, as a parent you should be aware of any underlying causes for the baby to not able to sleep. Of numerous reasons, babies could be hungry or unwell as well. So always keep in mind the feed frequency or general health of the baby in the equation.
The thoughts here presents a general idea of the Ferber Method but on ground, to inculcate this in the daily routine would not be easy and will vary from case to case. Please reach out to us in case you have any queries.
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