Home > Babies and Toddlers > Babies > Your Baby and Sleep > Sleep and Nap Schedules > Six-Month-Old Not Sleeping Through the Night
|

Expert Iconexpert advice MORE

Six-Month-Old Not Sleeping Through the Night

Pediatrics Expert Advice from Henry Bernstein, M.D.

Q: My baby is six months old and not sleeping through the night. Do you have the Ferber method or any suggestions?

A: You share a common concern of parents, since "not sleeping through the night" is terribly exhausting for everyone in the family. By this age, most babies, who are full term, healthy, and otherwise growing and developing normally, are capable of sleeping for eight to ten hours without the need to be fed or consoled during the night.

It is important to establish regular routines with the babies that are meant to promote longer periods of sleeping. If this is not happening, perhaps you are expecting too much or possibly your baby does not need as much sleep as other babies.

Some specific suggestions I can make include insuring a calm, relaxing bedtime schedule that is routine and happens regularly at about the same time each night. Reading a book, low-key play, and even one last feeding are all suitable during this ritual. Be sure to put the baby to bed in the same crib that will be used for the whole night. It does not help to have the baby fall asleep in one place (e.g. your bed) and then be moved to his crib. Placing him in his crib awake and then allowing him to fall asleep can also make a difference. Since significant variations can be problematic, consistency by all caretakers is most definitely a plus. I do recommend the Ferber method (best discussed in his book Solve Your Child's Sleep Problems ) for encouraging your baby to learn to fall asleep and stay asleep.

More on: Expert Advice

Henry Bernstein, M.D., is currently the associate chief of the Division of General Pediatrics and director of Primary Care at Children's Hospital, Boston. He also has an academic appointment at Harvard Medical School.


Please note: This "Expert Advice" area of FamilyEducation.com should be used for general information purposes only. Advice given here is not intended to provide a basis for action in particular circumstances without consideration by a competent professional. Before using this Expert Advice area, please review our General and Medical Disclaimers.

stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks

highlights

Join BIC on our mission to save handwriting and Fight For Your Write! Writing helps kids become better readers, boosts their confidence and sparks their creativity. Visit BICFightForYourWrite.com to sign our petition to save handwriting!

7 Tips for Reading Aloud to Babies & Toddlers
The AAP advises reading aloud to babies and toddlers because it boosts brain power and has many other benefits. Get some tips for making the most of story time with your tot!

Kindergarten Readiness App Wins Gold
Our Kindergarten Readiness app won the Gold Award of Excellence in the educational category at the 2014 Communicator Awards. This valuable checklist comes with games and activities to help your child practice the essential skills she needs for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

How to Survive Summer Boredom
When the kids are home all day, every day, summer boredom strikes hard and fast. Learn the best summer boredom busters and tips for surviving until September.

12 Birthday Party Favors that Won't Get Thrown Away
The next time you're planning a birthday, forgo the penny candy and cheap toys. Send your guests home with one of these fun and creative party favor ideas!