Sleep Regressions are talked about a great deal when talking about infant or child sleep. If you speak to a parent with a young child and you mention the word regression you will most likely see a look of fear in their eyes.
Honestly, I feel that these regressions are actually overrated! The fact is that there are many reasons for a change in a child’s sleep and stating if a child is (insert age) they will have a regression in sleep is not necessarily the case. I believe that a number of sleep-related issues get blamed on a specific age when in fact the change in sleep can usually be tied to a developmental milestone or change in sleep needs.
What is a Sleep Regression?
A sleep regression is when your child’s sleep takes a turn to the difficult side. You had a few weeks or days of great sleep and then wham, you are up several times or fighting with your child to get them the sleep they require.
When is it a True Regression?
Changes in a child’s sleep will happen several times. If the change in your child’s sleep has lasted for more than 4 days and cannot be blamed on an illness or growth spurt then you are in the midst of a regression.
The Most Talked about Regressions Demystified!
This is when our little ones are moving from the newborn sleep cycle to the sleep cycle that is similar to yours and mine. They are moving from 2 stages of sleep to 4 to 5 stages of sleep per sleep cycle.
8 to 9-month Regression:
This is typically related to a developmental milestone. At this age, there is so much growth going on that is does play havoc with our child’s sleep.
Typically, the developmental milestones that are occurring at this age are as follows: learning to crawl, standing, walking and babbling.
This can usually be related to increased separation anxiety. This age is famous for this! It does make putting your little one down for sleep a bit more difficult.
This is usually when our little ones have a verbal explosion! Has your child started to talk a great deal more? This is usually the culprit to sleep-related issues at this age.
Thanks for the Explanation, Now what?
The best thing you can do if you suspect that your child is dealing with a sleep regression is to be patient. If your child had a good sleeping pattern before and you do not introduce any new sleep props your child should be back on track in 4 to 7 days.
If a week has passed and you are still dealing with the sleep regression then I would recommend that you look at your child’s wake time. Your child will most likely benefit from a 15 minute increased wake time.
You adjusted the wake time and are still having issues then I would look for a hidden sleep prop or a prop that your child wakes up requesting.
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