November 2012 Moms

Ferber method?

Anyone considering or already doing the Ferber method?

I read that you can start at 4 months. My friend's ped. told her to do it. She has a 9 month old with sleep issues. My LO was doing awesome at night until about 2 weeks ago. She got an ear infection and sleep has totally regressed. She is all better now, but for the last few nights it has been particularly bad- up almost every hour. I go back to work in a month and will not be able to function without decent sleep and am starting to stress over it.

 I know there is controversy over the "cry it out", but it seems a little less harsh than it sounds..checking/soothing LO every few minutes.

Re: Ferber method?

  • I've read about this method and it doesn't sound too bad. My LO has always been a pretty good sleeper so honestly I don't know what I would do if I was pressed to find an answer for sleep!

    But with any other difficulty with babies its all about trial and error. GL!
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  • I haven't read his book. We will probably do some sort of CIO but I'm not sure what yet. I'm reading Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child and he enumerates several methods of sleep training. I know it's going to be so hard though.

    Also, we won't start until 6 months at the earliest.

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  • We started CIO with B after our pediatrician said we could and he was only 8 weeks! We didn't have to do it for night time at all, but we did for naps. He would only nap in my arms and if I laid him down he would wake up. Also, going down for a nap in my arms he would cry the whole time till he fell asleep. So after a lot of conversations between DH and I, we decided to try it. If he was going to CIO on one of us and then wake up anyway, we could at least try it in the crib. It took about a week. We only let him cry 10 min at a time and we would make sure he was super cozy and loved feeling before laying him down. He's been sleeping in his crib now for long naps for 5 weeks without a problem. And a lot of times he wakes himself up and soothes himself back down. Happy parents. Granted, that first week sucked and its still hard some times!
  • Full disclosure, I don't like sleep training for young babies.  However, I know it works for a lot of families, so if you do the research and train gently, do what works for you.

    A word of caution about starting at 4 months, though.  Make sure it's not the four-month "wakeful" period that is stopping the sleeping like a champ.  I posted an article to my FB this morning from KellyMom, that put things in a different perspective for me.

    http://kellymom.com/parenting/nighttime/4mo-sleep/

    This is obviously aimed toward EBFing moms, but I pump and bottle feed and am still finding it to be true.  His nighttime bottles take longer to finish, and are only 4oz to his normal 6oz, so it is more likely than I thought that he is truly hungry.

    I'm not trying to talk you out of sleep training, because we all do it in some form or another, whether it's Ferber, CIO, or just waiting it out by relaxing with baby.  I just think that the fact that most S+TMs on the board have had the most success after six months might be something to think about.

    ETA: Also, re: the ear infection.  Our ears, nose, and throat are all connected, as most people know.  There may be some lingering effects that are causing LO to be a less effective eater.  If it continues, you might want to call your pedi and they may refer you to a pediatric ENT.  When I was an infant, I only gained a half ounce between 3 months and 6 months, and had some major pre-language delays.  The pedi diagnosed me with FTT and suspected I might have a mental challenge.  Well, no.  I had chronic ear infections (still do), couldn't suck properly, and had about 70% hearing loss (thankfully have grown out of).  And they thought I was slow?  Took the doctors a year to figure it out!

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  • Yes, you can start Ferber and CIO at around 4 months. However. If your LO is sick, teething, or going through a growth spurt, you shouldn't be trying any sleep training method. Our kids are all at that delightful 4 month wakeful. Give it some time. But in the meantime, do some research. Read Ferber's book if you're interested in that. But also read something on the other side - Elizabeth Pantley's No Cry Sleep Solution. Dr. Sears' The Sleep Book. Whatever. Something else. 

    FWIW, I won't do CIO. I didn't with S and she was a horrible sleeper, and I won't with T who seems to be a much better sleeper. But I came to this decision after doing the research on both sides.  

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    AngelSmitty: This reminds me of something my college Human Sexuality professor used to say in class.  "Sex is between the legs.  Gender is between the ears."
  • Thanks everyone for your input. She had a better night last night- only up 3 times, each time to feed and she seriously chowed.  

    In addition to my lack of sleep, I guess my other main concern is that she has to be bounced to sleep on an exercise ball for both night time (the first time she goes down) and for all naps. She has to be bounced until completely asleep otherwise as soon as you put her down she bursts in to tears. I fear that in a daycare setting they won't have any other choice but to let her cry it out. I don't want her to have the transition of a new place and no longer being soothed to sleep. If I can lesson the transition by starting some sleep training at home I think it will be easier for us both.

     We have a well visit in a week and a half so I think I'll see what the pede says about her health. If there is anything physically wrong still (with ears or anything else) I wouldn't want her to be crying because she is in pain.

    I was unaware of the 4 month wakeful period...so that explains some too! Thanks for the Kelly mom article- that sounds just like us (+ ear infection).

     I will definitely do more reserach on the various methods before starting anything. Thanks everyone!!

  • image jenszler:

    In addition to my lack of sleep, I guess my other main concern is that she has to be bounced to sleep on an exercise ball for both night time (the first time she goes down) and for all naps. She has to be bounced until completely asleep otherwise as soon as you put her down she bursts in to tears. I fear that in a daycare setting they won't have any other choice but to let her cry it out. I don't want her to have the transition of a new place and no longer being soothed to sleep. If I can lesson the transition by starting some sleep training at home I think it will be easier for us both. 

    Actually... DCPs really CAN'T do CIO. If they do, it wakes up the other babies. But that said. Babies just... are different for DCPs than they are at home. Not sure why, but... don't worry about your DCP. They'll figure it out.

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    AngelSmitty: This reminds me of something my college Human Sexuality professor used to say in class.  "Sex is between the legs.  Gender is between the ears."
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