how to tackle baby sleep regressions

How to Tackle Baby Sleep Regression – 4 Useful tips by a Sleep Consultant!

This is a guest post by a Baby Sleep Expert, Shan Roth who is a mom of 3 and has been helping mamas and babies sleep for the last 8 years. I was thrilled to attend her free courses on baby sleep and has helped me tackle some of the issues I had with my baby’s sleep regressions.

If you are reading this and want to prepare your home for your baby, check out what you need to do. While baby sleep regression is normal, this can affect a mom who is going through postpartum. Here are some ways that help you relax during postpartum.

baby sleep regression

Baby Sleep Regressions: Are they really a thing?

Your baby is sleeping well and now you are just waiting for a dreaded baby sleep regression. Good news! If your baby has great sleep skills where they are able to fall asleep independently from wide awake to sleeping on their own, then your baby does not hit a regression for no reason. Baby sleep regression does not just happen because a baby is at a certain age. You know like the 4-month sleep regression, the 6-month sleep regression, the 1-year sleep regression or the 18-month sleep regression. Not a thing!

Baby Sleep regression can happen and it can happen for these 4 main reasons.

1. The first being a regression related to learning a new physical skill.

Developmental sleep regression can occur when a baby learns to roll, sit up, crawl and walk. This can cause a temporary disruption to sleep as your baby learns and masters this new skill. You may have to provide some extra help to get your baby into a comfortable position for sleep. For example, rolling your baby back onto their stomach or helping your child go from standing to laying down might be needed.

baby sleep regression

2. The second is when a baby is relying on a sleep prop to start their journey to sleep or go to sleep.

If a baby is falling asleep or getting drowsy before being put down in the crib they are relying on a sleep prop. A sleep prop is anything external to a baby that they are using to get drowsy or fall asleep. This includes bottle, breast, soothers, and rocking movements to name a few. If a baby is relying on this, sleep will typically fall apart between 3-4 months old when the baby comes out of the newborn stage and starts to become much wiser and aware of their environment. If they fall asleep with a prop they start to realize that and will wake up looking for the prop which causes frequent night wakings and short naps.

This might appear to be a 4-month baby sleep regression. However, babies that have great sleep habits before this age and are falling asleep on their own, do not experience a regression at this time. The regression only happens in babies that are relying on props and do not have developed independent sleep skills. The solution to this problem is sleep training your baby to fall asleep independently. And the good news is that every baby has the ability to sleep well. They need to be able to tap into their own innate ability.

You are your child’s most important teacher! I have never come across a parent that wasn’t able to teach their baby to sleep well and a baby that wasn’t capable of learning to sleep well. Having a proven plan and support are the 2 most important factors in having success the first time when sleep training your baby. I would like to offer you my free masterclass: How To Teach Your Baby To Sleep Well Without Feeling Like A Bad Mom as a great place to start.

3. The third reason for a sleep regression is related to your baby’s schedule.

If your baby is going to sleep easily on their own and suddenly this is not happening any longer, it typically means the schedule needs adjusting. This results in dropping a nap or lengthening the amount of awake time. Below is the appropriate amount of wake time and number of naps needed depending on your baby’s age.

  • 4 months old, 3 naps a day, 1.5-2 hours of awake time
  • 6 months old, 2 naps a day, 2.5-3 hours of awake time
  • 9 months old, 2 naps a day, 3-4 hours of awake time
  • 13 months old, 1 nap a day, 5-6 hours of awake time
baby sleep regression
Photo by Polina Tankilevitch on

4. Finally, the fourth reason your baby may experience a sleep regression is due to teething or sickness.

This will only be temporary for a few days and nights. And then your baby may need help from you, their #1 teacher, to get back on track with great sleep. During teething or sickness, the best thing to do is provide some extra comfort and support without introducing or resorting to past sleep props. For example, if your baby was sleeping through the night without a night feed, then it is best not to reintroduce one. Just provide some extra comfort and support by picking up your baby and walking around to help him or her settle. And then once your baby is feeling well again, get right back on track.

If your baby has hit a sleep regression, do not fear. You’ve got this! Get access to my signature sleep training course 5 Days To A Better Night’s Sleep

Success Stories

Here is what Ashley said after completing the course:

“We realized that we were having success the first night! Before enrolling in 5 Days to a Better Night’s Sleep, we were having difficulty getting our 5-month-old to go down for naps and bedtime. It was emotionally breaking both of us and causing us to dread anything involving sleep. After taking the course and working with Jammy Time everything is different! We are now able to put our son down, confident that he is able to self-soothe to sleep. We know he will sleep through the night and naps are starting to improve as well.

We know that if anything does come up, that we have a plan in place and a support system for any other questions or concerns. We were so worried that the first night was going to break our hearts but within 25 minutes our baby was asleep. He only woke up once during the night and was able to self-soothe back to sleep. This was also his first night without any feeds! AMAZING.

Our life has significantly improved in all ways possible. Not only is our baby sleeping well, but so are we. We get to enjoy every minute with him now instead of dreading the next sleep. We are more confident as parents and can enjoy our downtime together.”

Read more success stories here. And do follow Shan on Instagram to know more about Baby sleep.

baby sleep regression

2 thoughts on “How to Tackle Baby Sleep Regression – 4 Useful tips by a Sleep Consultant!”

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