Ready to Begin Your Sleep Journey?   Yes! Show Me How
Ready to Begin Your Sleep Journey?   Yes! Show Me How

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  1. Alexandra says

    Hi, I have a 4 month old and 1 week. I put her down by rocking to sleep after her bedtime routine that consists of shower, massage and pajamas the I sing to her a Lullaby and rock her to sleep. She usually falls sleep within 10 min in my arms. Now after around 4 to 5 hours of sleep she wakes up not sometime opening her eyes sometimes not and start pulling her and moving very uncomfortable like something is bothering her, scratching her face anyways I’m not able to figure out what is happening. I need help I don’t know if it’s that she can’t soothe herself back to sleep and that’s why she reacts like that. Please I need advise. She naps thru the day sometime 30 to 1:30 mins

    • Janelle Reid says

      Hi @Alexandra, thanks for writing to us. At 4 months old we would still expect your daughter would need a couple of feedings, so it’s possible she is waking because she is ready to be fed? Even if she was sleeping through the night previously and it can feel like things may be taking a step backwards, keep in mind that as babies grow they are getting more active and needing more calories as well. Here is a link to a 4 month old schedule that may help you troubleshoot to see if there’s any changes you may want to try:
      Please let us know if you need any more help, we have a ton of resources available that can help you. Thanks for visiting!

  2. Sarah says

    Hi, my 4.5 month old starts yawning after 30 mins of being awake (the time it takes to nurse him). He’s yawning as I burp him and is staring off in space. So I read his cues and try to put him down for a nap. I swaddle and rock and he goes to nurse and I usually end up nursing him into a deeper drowsy state, but he wakes a few mins later. I’ve tried not nursing him, but he just cries and cries. Help! I feel like he should be able to stay up longer than 30 mins, but I don’t want him getting over tired. He sleeps 10-12 hours at night, no waking, no dreamfeed. And has put himself to sleep a few times for nap time and also will sleep occasionally in the stroller. What am I doing wrong??

    • Janelle Reid says

      Hi @Sarah, thanks for writing! For the record, I don’t think you’re doing anything wrong! It sounds like you’ve got a champion of a sleeper. 🙂 Naps can be a little trickier for some babies to get the hang of. Both of my boys weren’t super great at naps until they were a little older, but that doesn’t mean your son can’t do it now, just hope to encourage you that you’re not alone. Here is a link to a free guide with some tips for nap help that you can try to improve them:
      I hope this helps! If you need anything else, please let us know!

  3. Kate says

    I have a 2.5 mo and napping has been really difficult. She fights going down, sometimes as soon as we head toward her room. We’ve been able to do drowsy but awake just a few times. Getting her down on a good day takes 10-15 min, but it’s not unusual for it to take 30-45. We are watching for sleep cues but even when we seemingly catch her subtle early signs, she fights it. We’re tired of committing so much time to naps, which only last 35 min, and when she starts daycare this won’t be an option. I’m just wondering if you have any advice

    • Janelle Reid says

      Hi @Kate, thanks you for visiting the Baby Sleep Site! I’m sorry to hear you’ve been struggling with your little one’s naps. I know at that young age naps were really challenging for me and both of my boys. At this age, short naps are pretty common, unfortunately! You’ll find as she gets older she’ll start consolidating those tiny catnaps into longer more efficient naps. I know those first few months can feel like you’re either constantly feeding them or trying to get them to sleep to repeat it all over again. Here is a link to download our free guide with tips for newborn sleep:
      If you want more in-depth information I’d like to also recommend our ebook “Essential Keys to Your Newborn’s Sleep” which will cover you all the way through the first year:
      Hopefully these resources can help give you more of an idea of what’s going on, but if you need more help please let us know! We have so many resources I didn’t want to overwhelm you. Feel free to contact us directly as well at [email protected] and we’ll be happy to help you more from there.

  4. Shoshana says


    We just started trying to put down our 4.5 month old drowsy but awake, (last night was night two) and I’m wondering if it’s normal/helpful if baby still doesn’t sleep after 3 hours.

    Previously, we’d bounce or nurse him to sleep, then put him down fully asleep. Although we had a few awful nights after his four month sleep change started (he’d wake up every tune we put him down), he recently progressed to a 5-6 hour stretch in his cosleeper. He’d fall asleep between 6:3 and 7, then we’d do a dream feed around 10, and he would sleep 5-6 hours straight after that.

    Fast forward to the drowsy but awake attempt: we just finished night two, both nights he cried on and off while dad soothed him without picking him up (mostly), and this went on from 7-10. Both nights he been awake at dream feed time, so dad fed him (bottled breast milk), and then he fell asleep in dad’s arms while dad was holding him upright (we hold him upright for 15 min after eating to reduce spit up).

    So is it worth it to try drowsy but awake if baby didn’t fall asleep within 3 hours? What about baby falling asleep in dad’s arms after a “dream feed?” does that negate all baby and dad’s hard work?

    • Janelle Reid says

      Hi @Shoshana, thanks for writing to us. I’m sorry to hear you’ve been struggling with your son’s sleep these past few weeks. With any sleep training, it can take a few days for your baby to catch on, so I would recommend sticking to your plan for 5-7 days at least, unless of course you are feeling uncomfortable or like your baby is in distress. But it sounds like his dad is very supportive and you two are working very well together on this.
      If you need more help, you may want to work with one of our sleep consultants who can answer your questions and give help on the next steps for you. Should you be interested the most direct way of working with a consultant is through a Personalized Consultation that you can read more about here:
      If that is more support than you’d want, you may want to look into joining our Members Area where there is a weekly chat with a sleep consultant (among access to all of our ebooks, tele-seminars, exclusive blog articles that go more in detail, etc.) that you can read about here:
      Let us know if you need anything else! Hang in there!

  5. Amanda says

    We have been trying the “drowsy but awake” approach with my six month old, but every single time we transfer him, it’s instant crying. He stops almost immediately if you pick him up again, so I know he just wants to be held, but if you leave him he will just cry and cry and not fall asleep…

    • Janelle Reid says

      Hi @Amanda, thanks for writing to us. I am sorry to hear you’ve been struggling with your son fully waking up when you put him down. How old is your son? I’d be happy to send over some more information that may help, but I want to make sure to send over age-appropriate material. 🙂 Hang in there!

      • Amanda says

        He is six months old.

      • Janelle Reid says

        @Amanda, woah, I definitely just reread your initial comment and I have no clue why I did not see that you told me his age from the beginning! I’m sorry!
        It will definitely take some time for your son to get into the rhythm and learn to fall asleep on his own, but once he does it will be a game changer for sure! There are several other methods you can take to help calm him that aren’t just leaving him alone to cry it out, it just may take some time for you to figure out what works for him, so whenever you try an approach give it a week or two of trying before you switch it up as consistency with sleep training is key. Here is a link to download a free guide with tips to help your baby sleep through the night – within the guide there are lots of other links to articles with various sleep training techniques and ways to break your little guy of sleep associations (aka: the need to be held to sleep):
        If you need more help, let us know! And again, I’m sorry I totally overlooked your first comment, I don’t know what was going through my brain when I replied to you initially!

  6. Karla Webber says

    I would love some advice about knowing if my almost 2 year old is ready for sleep or needs to sleep earlier? Her bedtime routine is generally 30 minutes (bath, lotion, jammies, say good night) but then she has to ‘read’ or go potty or go get water before she even starts to have one yawn. I’m not sure if she transitioned her bedtime to later, (used to be 7pm) but now, it’s taking 45 minutes to an hour to even get her to appear sleepy. What am I doing wrong? We rock together in the glider, then once she lets me lay her down, she’ll fall asleep on her own. I just don’t know how to get her ready for sleep sooner.

    • Neosha says

      @Karla – Thank you for reading and for sharing with us. My, my, my, those toddlers sure do know how to stall bedtime and I’m speaking from personal experience. I feel your pain! 2-year olds go through some sleep changes and another sleep regression that impacts their sleep and behaviors – many of them need MORE awake time before sleep times, too. Here’s an article that you should find helpful that goes over this a bit more: Hang in there, Karla!

  7. Jennifer says

    We moved and sleep got all messed up. My 10 month old doesn’t seem to ever get drowsy. Even when he was younger I always struggled with this. I feed him and sing at the same time, brush his teeth, burp him and rock him for a bit but he usually starts flaring in my arms so I just end up putting him down where he then cries for sometimes an hour. I am in his sleep window and try to keep a tight schedule.

    • Debbye @ The Baby Sleep Site says

      Hi @Jennifer – Thank yo for visiting us! I am sorry to hear that your little guy is having a tough time and crying quite a bit before he falls asleep! Moving can disrupt even the best sleepers, and hopefully things will smooth out soon as you all settle into your new home! And, unfortunately, some babies do no t have obvious tired signs too! At his age, and because he is not showing you those helpful drowsy signs, you may want to keep watching the clock as you have been, and keep working on finding that right sleep window!
      One of our expert sleep consultants would be happy to help create and get to a good schedule for his, and to help you through this!
      Please check out our consultation packages here if you need more help!:
      Hang in there Jennifer and good luck!!

  8. Monica says

    Hi, When I put my 5.5 month old in crib for nap he sometimes takes 20-30 minutes to fall asleep. Most of that time (beginning part) he is content – should I be touching him, replacing pacifier, stroking his head etc. or should I just sit on a chair next to crib and wait for those fussy moments and then touch…or not touch at all as it might create another association. Even when he is a bit upset its not usually crying (he is rather calm baby) its more of louder yelling. In short – lay down and remove myself, or lay down and touch…

    • Neosha says

      @Monica – Thank you for reading and for your comment! It sounds like your little guy’s calm nature is carrying on during his sleep time, which is great news! If your son is calm and content lying by himself before he goes to sleep, feel free to leave him be as he learns to sleep on his own. Best of luck to you both, and please stop back by to see us again soon.

  9. Rebecca says

    This is a good description. I had a rough time with my older daughter’s sleep and have been determined to do better with my now 5 1/2 month old. I thought I’d been achieving “drowsy but awake” with her and she’s slept through the night (a 7-10 hour stretch) consistently since 8 weeks old. She has recently been sick and for the last 7 nights, has been up every 2-3 hours. Because I’m tired and she’s still coughing / runny nose, I’ve been letting her fall asleep before I lay her down and I feel like I’ve ruined the work of the past 5 months! I’m getting ready to move her to her crib (from a bassinet in our room) and start some new sleep habits but I’m already so anxious because of what I went through with my older daughter. Thanks for the info on your site!

  10. Ellen says

    I LOVE that you’ve addressed this! With my first this was so frustrating, because I had NO idea what “drowsy but awake” meant. It was my pediatrician who finally put it in a way that made sense to me. He said “Remember how you’d feel in class when it was really boring, and you could barely keep your eyes open? They’d keep closing on their own and you’d catch yourself drifting off? That’s drowsy but awake.”
    Being able to relate to that state made it easier to spot it in my baby.

    I like your explanation of how long soothing should take, etc. It’s a great reminder now that our second has arrived, and we want to get off to a better start than we did with #1!