Operation: Lovey – Tips on Introducing a Lovey
We have been very lucky when it comes to the sleep habits of our two kids. Ladybug started sleeping for long stretches at night very early on and Little Big Man has been fairly good as well. I have to credit Dr. Weissbluth, the head of our pediatricians office. Yes, that Dr. Weissbluth. He is not our pediatrician but the office holds New Parent Support Groups and he will speak at these and discuss each baby in attendance.
He does advocate a cry-it-out method of sleep training BUT even if that is not for you, there is way more to it than that. He advocates watching your child for signs of sleepiness, learning his or her sleep habits and laying baby down drowsy but awake, among other ideas. This mentality really did help us regardless of the cry it out stuff. We followed this to a T and it really makes sense.
We did have a period of time when Ladybug was around 5 or 6 months old where she had trouble falling asleep and we have just had the same thing crop up with Little Big Man. Ladybug benefited by starting a sleep routine of jammies, nurse, read two books, lay her down, lights off. When we really made a constant routine it helped pretty quickly. It also helped that she sucked her thumb and rubbed her ear to comfort herself. She basically had a built in lovey. When she turned 1 and started wearing shirts instead of bodysuits she switched to rubbing her belly button and still does it today. (update: she stopped recently, a little before turning 4 but still wants to do it occasionally.)
With Little Big Man, he doesn't suck his thumb, he takes a pacifier when he sleeps and cannot put it back in when it falls out. Our babysitter (who was a pediatric resident at the time- score!) noted that he likes to grab and rub things while he eats and when he is sleepy, and that he may benefit from a lovey. Now don't get me wrong, I love nursing my baby and I fall back to sleep pretty easily so I truly don't mind nursing at night overall. I do, however, believe that healthy sleep habits make for a happy baby so I do try pretty hard to make sure my kids get as much sleep as possible.
The AAP recommends not putting any loose blankets or toys in baby's crib until the age one 1 and the lovey itself even has a tag warning not to put it in bed with an infant. But. I mean. It's a lovey…So I asked our pediatrician's office and they said it's okay to try it.You should ask your pediatrician to see if it is right for you.
Tips for Introducing a Lovey
Looking into it online I read some tips to introduce a Lovey, or a Transition Item as it is sometimes called:
-Have mom wear the lovey in her shirt for a while before presenting it to baby.
-Hold it while you nurse or feed baby and direct baby's hand to it.
-Buy more than one and rotate often (baby may not like a brand new fresh one if his regular one is worn).
-Give it a name (found this advice on a sweet blog called Emily's Little World) we still need a name for ours.
We gave it a try and I'll be darned if he didn't sleep better the very first night that we put him to sleep with it- and every night since. He will still wake and cry out but he stops right away and goes back to sleep. Here is hoping I am not jinxing things!
Does your baby have a lovey? Any other tips for those who want to introduce one? Leave a note to let us know!
If you liked this little post, show us some “lovey” and pin our picture up there or share it on facebook! Thanks! See you soon!
GOT TODDLERS! If you enjoy trying simple, playful activities with your baby or toddler, I invite you to check out a lovely collaborative eBook that I contributed to. Zero to Two ~ the book of play is chock full of easy activities, step-by-step tutorials and inspiring photographs from some of the top kids bloggers from around the world! There is an index that helps you select the perfect activity based on your child's stage in life and many of the activities are perfect for multiple siblings of different ages to do together! Learn more here!
You are lucky! My oldest, I did everything I could think of, everything the doctors recommended (including crying it out) yet my son still woke up in the night until he was 2. He would yell out for milk, we would give him a sippy cup he would drink it and go right back to sleep. He was just truly hungry in the night.
Oh man, that is rough! I say, “whatever works,” and “every child is different!” At least you figured out the best way to make it work, that is what counts!
Thank you for this post. I am trying a couple of your techniques right now with my littlest one. She sleeps very well through the night, but for about a week had been waking up each night quite a few times. This meant us getting up and giving her the pacifier. We did the lovey thing last night and she only woke up around 5:30. I went in there to check on her and found her looking at it and smiling! So nice!
Our oldest created a firm attachment to an item around 7 months and I had never given any thought to the fact that it might have helped her to continue to sleep through the night and comfort herself.
Leah @ Simple.Home.Blessings.
Hooray! So glad to hear it helped! I felt like the tips I found were helpful but you just never know what will work with each baby! Hope it continues to help! Take care!