This week I am answering a great question from one of my audience members;
8 month old Ottilie has never slept through the night, sleeping typically for 2-3 hours before waking. Recently things have got a lot worse, and she is now waking every hour.
She has never been able to self settle, Mum has tried a variety of strategies to encourage her to sleep longer such as introducing a dummy, gradually retreating from the room, and going back in at intervals and nothing seems to work.
This is a great question and sounds like a challenging time for both Ottilie and Mum. 8 months can be a challenging age, this is a time that can be referred to as a ‘regression’ age however in my opinion it is very much a time when progress is made. Your baby is growing and developing at a huge rate and this can have an impact on even the greatest sleeper.
However Ottilie, sleep wise, is displaying newborn behaviour, at 8 months she should be having 2 solid naps during the day (some children may even need a 3rd nap) totalling 3 hours. To avoid overtiredness she should avoid being awake for more than 3 hours.
Also, the bedtime routine is key here, keeping things calm, restful and consistent. Make sure you do the same things in the same order every evening, setting the cues for sleep.
When the crying starts, decide on a response (smoothing, shushing, patting for example) and make sure you are consistent with this at bedtime, but also for night wakings.