Monday, May 18, 2009

Trouble Sleeping?

 ...well Maia is. And since we co-sleep...us too.

I used to be paranoid back way before we had Maia. But since Maia's birth -- I'm now became MORE paranoid than ever. Since my only reference to track Maia's development are books and the internet, I would worry if Maia is a bit off-track. I know, i know...the baby websites ALWAYS reiterate that each baby is an individual so it highly possible that he/she might not always undergo the development markers that I would read. But I really can't help but drown myself in pointless anxiety sometimes.

Actually my problem usually just evolves on whether Maia is taking in enough milk and sleep. Those two - I ALWAYS, ALWAYS monitor with the Yaya...because these two is usually what contributes to her Physical Development. Maia is fine with ALL other development markers. On most of them especially the motor skills, Maia is even ahead at her age. But to me physical development is first and foremost! Especially since I desperately want Maia to grow bigger and TALLER than me. (HAHAHA...so now you know where all this FRETTING is coming from...)

So anyways, since I was a kid, I was told that the reason I did not grow any taller than I am now is because I abhor sleep when I was still a kid. Yes. You read it right. I was never fond of sleep. It wasnt until I became a mom that I learned to appreciate the BEAUTY of SLEEP. Even when I was pregnant with Maia, I'd be all tired but I would still prefer the waking hours than the sleeping hours. I guess, I am to blame for Maia's growing hate on sleep.

But is she really NOT getting enough zzzz's?

Well according to Baby Center:

By age 6 months, most babies sleep a total of 11 1/2 to 15 hours of sleep a day (between nighttime sleep and naps) and are capable of sleeping for long stretches at a time.

Between the ages of 6 and 9 months, many babies consolidate their daytime sleep into two naps, one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Don't be concerned, though, if your baby continues to take three naps a day. Keeping consistent times for bedtime and naps will help regulate his sleep patterns.

If your baby hasn't yet settled into a sleep pattern that fits your family life, now might be a good time to try some type of sleep training. Sleep training methods can help your baby go to sleep more easily, sleep for longer periods at night, and keep more regular hours. Sleeping through the night If your baby now sleeps for nine or ten hours at night, it means he's figured out how to settle back to sleep — a sign that you're raising a good sleeper. If your baby isn't yet sleeping at least five or six hours straight, you're not alone. Many babies still wake up at night for feedings in the 6- to 9-month stage — though most are ready for night weaning, if that's what you choose. But babies this age don't necessarily wake up because they're hungry. We all wake up several times every night for brief periods of time. And as adults, we put ourselves back to sleep each time — so quickly we don't even remember it in the morning. If your baby hasn't mastered this skill, he'll wake up and cry during the night even if he's not hungry. Waking up again Babies who were great sleepers may suddenly start waking up at night or have difficulty falling asleep between 6 and 12 months of age. Why? Sleep disturbances often go hand-in-hand with reaching major milestones in cognitive and motor development and with separation anxiety. At 6 to 9 months, your baby may be learning to sit up, crawl, or possibly even cruise or walk — quite a list of achievements! Not surprisingly, he may not want to stop practicing his new skills at bedtime and may get so excited that he'll wake up to try sitting up just one more time. Separation anxiety could also be the cause of your baby's wake-up calls. Waking up and finding you not there may cause some distress. But he'll probably calm down as soon as you enter the room and greet him. How you can establish healthy sleep habits Here are some tips for helping your baby sleep well at this age: Develop and follow a bedtime routine. If you haven't already established some sort of bedtime ritual, start now. A bedtime routine should help your child wind down and get ready for sleep, and at this stage your child will really begin to participate. Whether your routine includes giving your baby a bath, playing a quiet game, getting your child ready for bed, reading a bedtime story or two, or singing a lullaby, make sure you do it in the same order and at the same time every night. Babies like having routines and schedules they can count on. Keep your child on a consistent schedule. You'll both benefit from having a daily schedule that includes set times for bed and naps. That doesn't mean your baby has to eat lunch at exactly 12:15 every day, but it does mean you should try to stick to a fairly predictable schedule. If your baby naps, eats, plays, and gets ready for bed at about the same time every day, he'll be much more likely to fall asleep easily. Encourage your child to fall asleep on his own. To nap well and sleep through the night at this age, your baby has to learn to fall asleep on his own. Try putting him down before he nods off, so he can practice. If he cries, the next move is up to you. Do wait at least a few minutes to see if he's really upset or just fussing a little before settling down. Try putting him to bed earlier. If your baby's used to going to sleep after 8:30 p.m. and suddenly begins to wake up during the night, try making his bedtime a half-hour earlier. Surprisingly, you may find he's much more likely to sleep through the night. Practice getting "unstuck." Children who are learning to sit or stand up may practice their new skills at night in their crib and get stuck in an upright position once they're sitting or standing up. If this is happening to your baby, you'll need to teach him how to lie back down. Take a week or two to help him practice getting "unstuck," not necessarily in his crib but wherever you're spending time together. Make it a game — sit him up and then lay him down. Do the same with standing, helping your baby sit down at first and then encouraging him to do it on his own.

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