Wake to Sleep - Breaking Habitual Waking

21/08/2008 at 14:21

Has anyone tried the 'wake to sleep' method? I have copied this from a Tracy Hogg website in case you have not heard of it.

Parents are often shocked when I suggest the wake-to-sleep strategy for habitual night waking. Set your clock an hour earlier than your baby usually wakes and go into his room. Jostle him gently rub his belly a bit and stick a dummy in his mouth????????all of which will help stir him to semi-consciousness. Then, leave. He'll fall back to sleep. This gives you the control, rather than your sitting around hoping that your baby's habit will magically go away. (It won't.) By waking him an hour early you'll disrupt his sleep pattern.

I have problems with my baby waking up every 45mins during nap times & wondered if it was worth giving this a go?

Any idea?
21/08/2008 at 16:27
I have the same problem - Neve naps for 40 mins at the moment and have been thinking about trying this. I have Tracy Hoggs book and used it a lot, I found it very useful so I think its definately worth a go. I think am going have a go at this this over the weekend.
21/08/2008 at 16:32
Gabe does the same. He used to have 3 naps of 30/40mins but now he only has 2. I read a post on the toddler forum that says some babies have 2 hour naps! omg I wish Gabe had a 2 hour nap, don't think he's done that since he was 3 days old. I am too scared to try wake to sleep or whatever its called, but if you two have any success I may just try it...

I have never woke Gabe (unless I have an appointment and need 2 go out) and he's always slept thru 12 hours...never even had a dream feed...so how would this help?! Oh well there are all sorts of theories arent there!
21/08/2008 at 16:38
My lo has never slept through the night (apart from the night he was born!!) He will have naps in the day for up to 2 hours though and he needs them as he just gets ratty otherwise! I have heard about the dream feed thing but never sure if he would take the bottle or if it would wake him and then annoy him for being disturbed so not sure how the wake to sleep thing would work.
21/08/2008 at 16:39
Neve is fine at night time and sleeps through, its her daytime naps that are the problem. Looking back I have misread the original post. There is a different version for daytime naps.
22/08/2008 at 05:15
nobody knows your baby like you do so if you think this could help then go for it. iam a tracy hogg fan although i have never been able to put anyof her theories to the test as my baby sleeps when she wants to and has allways beena poor sleeper. i think this practise would be great if they were waking at 4 am every night for example but i dont know how successful you would be doing it for day time naps . My lo naps at various times a day and has allways been a napper infact i could set a stopwatch for 30 mins and she would allways wake at that time, so tiger lilly your lo is three months now you might find that that is what gabe is going to sleep. It is frustrating i know as i would love my lo to have a 2 hour nap but it has taken me 6 months to realise that my lo is never going to be like some of the babies on here. EVery now and again daisy will sleep in my arms for hour and half about 4 pm shewill stir every 30 mins but quickly goes back off but if she in her cot or her pram her eyes pop openand theres no going back to sleep. i know if i tried waking her after 15 mins she would just be cranky for rest of day.
22/08/2008 at 05:23
Claire sorry meant to say i bought a book on sleep inbabies and itsays that babie s sleep in cycles of 45 mins so she will be in rem sleep for first 45 mins then will fall into deep sleep after that your baby is waking up before she reaches her deep sleep. so it might be worth helping your baby reach that deep sleep stage bystroking her head or comforting her as soon as she wakes so she falls back to sleep easily. in adults we sleep incycles of hour and half so we are in rem (dream sleep) before we fall into a deep sleep.
22/08/2008 at 08:11
My friend did this with her lo, and it improved his naps no end. I couldn't do this part of her book, as dd would lie awake quite happily for ages, so I never knew how much sleep she'd had. I did do everything else T H said, and I swear I would have had a break down if I hadn't. Shes amazing.

Well her ways worked for us, so I'd def recommend her. Good luck!!

x x
22/08/2008 at 14:33
Thanks for your replies girls. I struggle to know how much sleep my LO has had too; he lies in his cot just looking around - sometimes for up to an hour! I So I think he has had a long nap but in actual fact is is only ever 45 mins. I know this as he wakes up ratty as he is still knackered.
Hayls, sorry to be a pain, can you ask your friend if she had a similar experience as me? i.e waking after 45 mins? I know this is all to do with his sleep pattern but it is so frustrating as I have to take him out in the car as he is frantic due to being so tired after so little sleep. It is very strange as I don't hear from his at night for hours on end & loves getting into his cot in the evening, it is just the day that he can't sleep through his 'light sleep' pattern. Also, I tried it unsuccessfully today as I don't think I woke him enough! Does the baby acutally have to open their eyes? He just kicked his legs with eyes closed. Thanks again x
22/08/2008 at 16:26

He was a very short napper, 45mins or under. And very high maintenance. He was always better at nights, but she even got him out of being used to getting in bed with her. They co slept for 1st 4months or so, then he went into his own bed, but by 4am every morning she was so tired, she put him back in bed with her. All using T Hs book.

yes you wake them so they open their eyes. It can be difficult at 1st and may get upset to begin with (expecting a cuddle or something) but soon they learn nothing interesting is going on, and go back to sleep. She would wake him and dash off (make sure you have a clear exit route lol)
Its handy for when they're more active, rolling round loads etc. My dd often ends up at the other end of her cotbed, turned 180, but now she knows when I go in to check her, my job is to put her the right way, tuck her in etc. Hers to go back to sleep.

Sorry for the long post, hope it helps. I had to ask loads of questions to get throu the book, but it was so worth it.

Take care x x x
24/08/2008 at 14:24
Thank you very much for your reply. I have been told that the light sleep doesn't affect a baby so much after 3 mths so I am holding out with my fingers crossed!
x x
13/10/2013 at 08:53

My two year old slept fantastically until 8 weeks ago. Now she is waking up every morning between 5.30-6am. Have tried putting her to bed later & cutting down on her nap but nothing works. It's total habit as at the beginning I brought her into our bed & she falls back asleep, but now she cries just to come in. Don't want her to wake my 6 or 4 year old. Any suggestions? We are exhausted! 


Your say
email image