By Sleep Training Kids
Behavioral-based sleep training is an effective and safe way to break negative sleep associations and create positive sleep associations to help children get a more restful sleep with fewer disruptions.
Sleep associations are actions that help us get to sleep (or back to sleep).
difference between sleep Training and Sleep Associations
Behavioral-based sleep training is a technique to help a child learn to self-soothe themselves to sleep more effectively and easily.
Also incorporated with self-soothing behaviors, it's one type of sleep associations that the baby can do for themselves.
Curling up or doing leg lifts
Rocking back and forth
Sucking on a finger, thumb, or pacifier
Banging feet, arms, or head against the mattress (or crib)
Singing, humming, and babbling
Negative sleep associations aren't bad behaviors; they're crutches we've learned to rely on to help us fall asleep. But because they're done by someone else, they're problematic for several reasons.
- Swaddling (when baby is older) - Touching the baby while they fall asleep - Being rocked, bounced, or lulled to sleep - Being nursed or bottle-fed to sleep
External sleep associations aren't behavior; they're environmental cues or triggers that can help our brains prepare for sleep.
01 White noise machine to mask noises
02 Blackout curtains to keep a room dark
03 A fan to keep the room at a cool, comfortable temperature
04 Blankie, stuffed animal, or pacifier for self-soothing
Sleep training and dealing with sleep associations don't have to be hard. They can be as easy and gradual or focused as you need them to be.
Hang in there - and best of luck.