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Do you want more sleep?   Yes! I need more sleep.

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  1. Casey says:

    Update: Note that in my previous post I do not mean to imply that monitoring is definitively effective in preventing SIDS. Scientific evidence has not been effective at assessing that claim one way or the other, and the actual cause of SIDS is unknown. Although testimonies abound from parents who believe they prevented the death of an infant when a monitor detected a long episode of apnea, it cannot be determined with certainty whether the infant would have died without intervention. And since efforts to determine the actual cause of SIDS (not risk factors associated with it) have been futile, it is impossible to know at this time whether any amount of monitoring or intervention can prevent its occurrence. So please understand that I am not saying the use of monitors can replace safe practices because they are equally effective at preventing SIDS. There is no evidence to that effect.

  2. Casey says:

    I understand the AAP’s recommendations and their safety concerns, but I also think people need to understand that what is safest and what actually helps babies sleep are not always the same thing. Before a certain age, little ones need a lot of soothing and help falling asleep. If it isn’t practical or even possible for that soothing to come always from you, a swing may be the way to go. In order to make it as safe as possible, though, why not make use of the many wonderful options that are now available to parents? Use a swing that reclines like a cradle for sleeping (although this does not eliminate the concern, clearly) or actually purchase a rocking bassinet to benefit from the modern convenience of automated rocking while still putting baby in a safe back to sleep position. And if you can “swing” it, why not use a great baby breathing monitor to help you detect any possible breathing disruptions that arise. I haven’t used one yet, but here is an infant motion detector that can be used with any sleep surface, not just in a crib, because baby wears it: https://www.amazon.com/Snuza-Halo-Baby-Movement-Monitor/dp/B002ITOC7S. Register for a product like this instead of a designer crib set and you will have a lot more assurance that your child is okay even when you have to perform some less-than-ideal gymnastics to get him or her to sleep soundly.

    Now, I’m not suggesting that a monitor is a good replacement for safe sleep practices and no device can spare you from having to face the consequences of failing to establish good sleep habits, but I think helping your little one get enough sleep is of the utmost importance. So when it seems like your baby’s sleep needs are in conflict with recommendations about ideal sleep conditions, it’s time to think about practical solutions.

    For a very persuasive but admittedly non-medical take on the issue, I highly recommend the blog Troublesome Tots: http://www.troublesometots.com/how-to-get-baby-to-sleep-better-part-2/

  3. Emily DeJeu says:

    @ Ashley — As I say in the post, some napping in the swing, especially when babies are young (as yours is), is fine. Sleeping in the swing at night, however, is iffy. The AAP recommends against it, so that’s not something we advise parents to do.

    However, I do understand your point about needing to prop your little guy up, since he seems congested. I think you’re probably right, and that his night waking could be due to illness and congestion. It seems like most babies and toddlers end up spending the entire winter battling nasty colds, doesn’t it? No fun (for them or for their parents!)

    I’d say use the swing as needed during the day; nothing wrong with doing what you need to do to stay sane! But avoid using it during the night, when you’re not awake to supervise. I’d also advise you to avoid using the swing so much that you create a long-term habit. I know that’s easier for me to say than it is for you to do, but try to keep it in mind.

    As always, you’re welcome to download our free guide (https://www.babysleepsite.com/baby-sleep-through-night-free-ebook/) Some of those tips and techniques might help you get your baby sleeping well again at night.

    Don’t hesitate to contact us if you have further questions, Ashley! And thanks for commenting. 🙂

  4. Ashley says:

    My 6 month old has napped and slept in the swing on and off but mostly on this entire time. First it was due to his acid reflux, we could not lay him flat on his back, he absolutely would not go to sleep if he was flat, we conquered the reflux and got him on a good eat, play, nap routine with a good 3-4 hr total nap time throughout the day with only his last nap in the swing and he was sleeping through the night consistently at 4 1/2 months… He has now started daycare and picked up the runny nose and congestion and wakes up throughout the night again :(… I think its mostly due to his congestion that he has never experienced, and a little due to teething. But he is now sleeping in the swing again because it seems he breaths better propped up and I also read to prop them up when congested. It has been 2 wks of waking again throughout the night after 2 months of consistently sleeping 8+ hrs. He has been coughing and congested so I am hoping it is just due to that and this doesn’t become a habit. He has been to the dr and he said just nose drops and suction. His oxygen levels and ears and everything else was ok.

  5. Emily DeJeu says:

    @ Sarah bobkin — thanks for sharing all these details about how you made the swing work for you! Love helpful personal stories like these. 🙂

    @ Eryn — it can be VERY hard to figure out a good sleep training plan when daycare is involved. Lots of parents struggle with that! We have an article on that topic planned, actually, so stay tuned for that.

    I think it’s normal for naps to be harder than nights (at least, for some babies.) Naptime sleep is very different than nighttime sleep (you can read more about that here: https://www.babysleepsite.com/baby-naps-2/why-baby-and-naps-different-than-night-sleep/)

    You’re always welcome to take a look at our free guides. We have one on napping (https://www.babysleepsite.com/free-baby-nap-guide/) and one on sleeping through the night (https://www.babysleepsite.com/baby-sleep-through-night-free-ebook/). You could also check out our sleep consultation packages, if you want a consultant to help walk you through the intricacies of sleep training while your baby is in daycare (https://www.babysleepsite.com/baby-toddler-sleep-consulting-services/)

    Keep us posted on how things go, Eryn! And thanks for commenting. 🙂

  6. Eryn says:

    My 9month old son has been napping in a swing since starting at daycare full time at abt 3.5 months. He refuses to nap in the crib at daycare and there are quite a few babies who nap in the swing. So, on the weekends, we try to emulate the swing nap at home. This worked, until a couple weeks ago and now DS will only nap on mommy! I’ve tried to put him in the swing or the crib and he just won’t sleep. I also find it particularly hard to sleep train when he isn’t being sleep trained at daycare… any advice? Does the 9month sleep resgression affect naps, but not night sleep?
    Sometimes I think to myself, we’re going to wean soon and I’ll miss this snuggle time.
    He sleeps in his crib at bedtime for a good 5-6 hour stretch, then we co-sleep after that first waking.

  7. Sara bobkin says:

    My daughter napped in her swing until she was 8 months old. I fought it in the beginning bc I didn’t want her to be ‘spoiled’ by it. But she would only nap for 30-45 min in the crib and would sleep for hours in the swing so I conceded defeat. I decided it was more important gor her to get the sleep she needs then where that sleep was happening. I also used it as a tool to transfer her to her crib starting around 3.5 months. I gradually reduced the speed and once she was sleeping in a non moving swing for a couple weeks into the crib she went. She slept through the night from 4.5 months (sporadically before then but then we hit the 4 month regression) and we haven’t looked back. Naps took longer but now she sleeps in her crib like a champ. I understand the AAP warnings and the supposed SIDS risk but it worked for us and i will probably do the same with my next child. I firmly believe now when they are ready for the crib ill know and it will be relatively easy to make the transition. Hopefully the next one liked the swing!!

  8. Emily DeJeu says:

    @ Marie — how old is your baby? This sounds like typical newborn/young infant behavior to me 🙂

    @ Kathy — we did the same thing in our house. I’d use the swing to save my sanity, but I tried not to make it a regular thing. Although I do confess to letting my kids sleep in the swing at night a few times when they were newborns (before the SIDS recommendations came out.) Wouldn’t do it now, though — I’d be too worried!

  9. Kathy says:

    My husband and I fought over this like crazy when our son was a baby. I was dead against it, he insisted that we all needed some sleep. We didn’t do it often enough to make it a habit, but at times, it was a lifesaver. So sorry to see that it is now considered a SIDS risk, because as time passed, I decided that I wouldn’t fight him on it if there happened to be another baby in the household.

  10. Marie says:

    No matter what I do my son never really sleeps the same way the only thing consisent is the times that he lays down. Sometimes he falls asleep in his swing sometimes he fall asleep on me or the bed. However the amount of time he sleeps is never the same, sometimes I think he just doesnt like sleeping.

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