Getting your baby to sleep through the night is big task for the parents. During the newborn days, you have no choice but to feed the baby whenever he wakes up. This gives you many sleepless nights. However, once the infant grows a little say when about six months old or more, you can consider training your baby to sleep without your help. Here, the ‘Cry-it-Out’ method might be helpful. In fact, hearing your baby crying is not that easy and the ‘motherly instinct’ is to calm the crying baby. But a lot of mothers would do anything to get a good night’s sleep and this is where the cry it out method will come in picture!
cry it out method

What Is The Cry-It-Out Method?

Cry-It-Out Method (CIO), as the name implies, does not mean that you let your baby to cry forever. It is a way of training your baby to sleep on his own. In this technique, for a certain time you let your baby to cry and then you go and calm him. With the help of this method, eventually the baby will learn to self-soothe and fall asleep rather than waiting for the mother to rock him to sleep. This is actually another milestone in the baby’s development.

What Is The Idea Behind Cry It Out Method?

This method works on a simple logic. When the baby is used to fall asleep while you feed or rock him, he will not be able to sleep on his own. Like adults, babies also tend to get up in the middle of the night. When the baby is awake in middle of night, he will not be able to soothe himself back to sleep and will cry until he gets the comfort from his mother. This method works on the theory that if the baby is given an opportunity, he will be able to achieve the milestone of falling asleep on his own

Steps Involved In Cry It Out Method
  • First of all, you should start to try this method only when the baby is set to sleep. The baby should be a little drowsy when you are putting him to sleep
  • Lay him down in his bed. Place a baby good night peck on his cheeks and go out of the room. Obviously, he will start to cry when you are no longer visible
  • Wait for some time before returning to the room and reassure your baby in a comforting voice. Remember to keep the lights off when you go back to the room and never attempt to carry him up
  • Do not stay with your baby more than a minute or two. Go out again, even if that means leaving your crying baby
  • Keep repeating this process but do increase the time of your entry till your baby falls asleep
  • Keep doing this whenever the child gets up during the night. Always try not to take him in your arms to soothe him
  • If the baby is very adamant and does not sleep even after trying out for three to four days, take a break. You can start to try again after a couple of weeks
It Is Ok To Let You Baby Cry It Out But For How Long?
  • When you begin to use this method, you can try to let your baby to CIO for 3 minutes before you comfort him, then increase it to 5 minutes and later to 10 minutes and likewise before you go and soothe your baby
  • On the second night you can make it five minutes the first time before you soothe your baby, then ten minutes and subsequently increase the gap to twelve minutes of crying before you go in to calm your baby
  • Keep increasing the intervals on the following nights

These are just few suggestions. The time you let your baby CIO before you go and soothe him totally depends on how comfortable you are.

Tips For Making Cry-It-Out Method Successful

Here are some tips with which the cry-it-out method can be implemented more effectively.

  • Make a bedtime regime for your baby. Put your baby to bed same time on all nights and this will help to make cry-it-out method more successful
  • Feed the baby well enough before you put him to sleep so that he doesn’t wake up due to hunger
  • Consistency is the key to the success of the cry-it-out method. Stick to the method once you start, no matter how many time the baby wakes up at night, continuously for some days

Baby in crib

What Are The Benefits Of Cry-It-Out Method?
  • Once the baby starts to sleep on his own following the Cry-it-out method, he is less likely to be less grumpy during the bedtime
  • Studies show that with this method, parents can expect their baby to fall asleep in 10 minutes
  • The baby will be less irritable during the day, as he or she is getting good night’s sleep
  • As the parents also get a good sleep during the night, their stress will be reduced immensely and will be more energetic throughout the day which makes them enjoy every moment with their baby
Disadvantages Of Cry It Out Method

Here are some of the disadvantages of this method:

  • Letting a baby cry goes against your motherly instincts
  • Cry it out can cause separation anxiety in your baby and may damage the bond between the baby and the mother
  • Crying it out can be stressful for the babies
  • Some parents believe that with cry it out method the baby can stop trusting his parents

But remember these drawbacks has no scientific reasoning so it leaves a lot of room for debate.
Maybe you don’t agree with logic of cry it out method or you have tried it out and it did not work for you. Every child is different and what is successful in one’s case may not hold good for other. So you can try different ways that suits you for training your baby to sleep.
Please do share with us some of your experiences of sleep training your baby. Have you tried the cry it out method? What is your opinion about it?