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Ask Dr. Keane Your Own Question

Dr. Keane
Dr. Keane, Family Counselor
Category: Parenting
Satisfied Customers: 1763
Experience:  Parenting Workshops, Teacher, PHD Clinical Psychology, 30 yrs. Exp. 4 Children
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Hi. I have a 9-month-old baby girl, who was actually born 5

Resolved Question:

Hi. I have a 9-month-old baby girl, who was actually born 5 weeks premature. She has been developing well a reaching all of her milestones so far and doing great. I was told to stop rocking her to sleep at night and before naps because it will create bad habits later on. Most of the time I rock her to sleep, but once in awhile I'll place her down in her crib and she'll fall asleep on her own. Last night I tried putting her down to sleep on her own, but it wasn't working very well. I tried suppernanny jo frost's approach to soothe her w/out looking at her and then waiting 5 minutes, going back to soothe her again and then waiting ten minutes, etc. She was completely wailing and sobbing, I've never heard her cry so much. Is she too young to be trying this? I've felt horrible this moring, I'm scared she was thinking I was neglecting her. Do I try this again tonight and try to be more consistent with it? I think she has some separation anxiety at night. I'd love any advice you could give me. She's also been teething too, so should I wait for that to pass?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Parenting
Expert:  Dr. Keane replied 5 years ago.

Dr. Keane :

Hi I can help you today.

Dr. Keane :

First congratulations on your baby girl!

Customer:

Thank you!

Dr. Keane :

At your daughter age it may very well be that a bit of separation anxiety is at play. However, her teething could also be playing a role. Do not feel horrible! she doesn't think you are neglecting her. There is nothing wrong with sitting and rocking your baby for a few minutes at bedtime, look at a book,whisper, sing and get her calm. If she then screams when you put her in the crib, it's okay, it may take a few days but it will stop. Just keep doing what you have did last night. What you are doing is a type of behavior modification, she is use to falling asleep by rocking. If you do this consistently it should end (as long as her teething isn't keeping her uncomfortable) within a week (yes, you'll be a bit anxious during this time)

Customer:

Thanks! So do you agree that it's ok to go in and soothe her at the first cry, wait 5 minutes, go back again if she is still crying and soothe her, then wait 10 minutes and keep doubling each time? Or should I let her cry it out from the time I put her down and not go back in?

Dr. Keane :

I would also suggest that you might want to put "soft" music on when you put her down, if she has something in her crib, a toy attached that plays lullaby and put that on every night she may be distracted and in time that will be something that means bedtime.

Customer:

Ok, thanks so much for your help! I appreciate it.

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