Author Topic: Progressing to Independent Sleep from Shush Pat  (Read 6 times)

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Offline Hoofbeat

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Progressing to Independent Sleep from Shush Pat
« on: Yesterday at 13:02:13 »
We've been using the shush pat technique for about 6weeks, with great success. My LO (almost 5 months) is so easy to get down for naps in his own cot now thanks to the techniques. We have a short wind down routine with the last part involving him lying in his cot listening to a song. We then turn on some white noise (our equivalent of shushing) and he has a short mantra cry sometimes, and we gently pat until he is quiet and then sit with our hands on him til he falls asleep on his own. Sometimes we do this with him laying on his back, but if he starts wriggling (he isn't swaddled) we roll him onto his side and then turn him onto his back once he's asleep.

I am wondering how to progress to the next stage of getting him to sleep completely independently. I'm not in a rush to do this (so am happy to wait til he's a bit older if that's best) but am just interested to know what the next stage is. We haven't tried just leaving him in his bed to fall asleep on his own, but I'm fairly sure he would cry as he seems to take great comfort from us being there. We've already reduced the noise of the shushing and stop patting a lot sooner than we use to (as soon as he's quiet usually), so I'm not sure what the next step is?

Also, does anyone have any advice on naps when out and about? Whilst DS is great falling asleep in his own bed, sometimes he needs to nap in his pram when out and about and we've rarely had any success with shush pat in that (it's also physically quite awkward to manage!). Will this just improve when he starts being able to fall asleep independently?

Thank you

ETS: When we put him down for naps at him, provided we have the timing right, he generally falls asleep within about 5 minutes of being put down, but sometimes it might be nearer 10 minutes.

Offline ginger428

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Re: Progressing to Independent Sleep from Shush Pat
« Reply #1 on: Yesterday at 22:23:17 »
That's great to hear how successful sh/pat has been for your son. The next step is gradual withdrawal.  Yes, leaving him now would probably be abrupt for him and could ruin all the progress you have made. Just like you reduced the noise of sh/pat, you can try stopping before he's quiet, while shing, then return your hand immediately when he makes a sound or fusses. You stop sooner and sooner, sh less and less until he only needs your presence. I reduced the frequency along with the intensity- such as patting lightly with the whole hand, then barely patting, then barely patting with a few fingers, then down to a slight pressure with 1 finger, etc... Enough to say I'm here, but not enough for him to keep wanting it if that makes sense... until he actually fell asleep without patting but with my presence. I think I would be there as he falls asleep for a while after as he might cry out for a pat once in a while.

Here's the sh/pat overview and next steps if you haven't already seen it.
https://babywhispererforums.com/index.php?topic=26672.0

This article is tailored for toddlers but the premise of gradual withdrawal is the same.
https://babywhispererforums.com/index.php?topic=80750.0

I can't comment on the naps out unfortunately... I didn't work on naps out until he was much older.