Health Watch: Sleep training your baby

Sleep training can be a difficult and stressful time for many parents. But there are simple things you can do to help not only your child but yourself sleep better at night. Dr. Cara Hamilton has some tips.

Dr. Cara Hamilton says, " There is some controversy out there as far as whether when and how to sleep train your baby. But I'm going to share some of my general recommendations. Really it helps if you start early with laying them down awake rather than rocking them to sleep and it makes your job 10 times easier. By 6 months you can generally start small by decreasing the amount of formula you are giving in their bottle every night until they are getting to almost nothing. And then you are just going to pick them up and soothe them. Before you lay them down awake again. And then you might just lean over the crib and touch them and talk to them and pat their belly instead of picking them up. And at some point one of these nights your child is going to start crying at you and want more attention then you are giving them. That's the point you will let them cry for increasingly longer amounts of time. Again maybe every 10 minutes you are going to go in and do the leaning over the crib. and talking to them and walking out again. Until they eventually fall asleep, maybe 15 minutes the next night and so on and so forth until they realize they should be sleeping. If you have any concerns oversleeping patters make sure to talk to your child's care provider and they can give you advice as well. And remember your baby's brain grows while they are sleeping so its good for them to get sleep too. This is Dr. Cara Hamilton at Black Hills Pediatrics with your Healthwatch.">