Best Baby Sleep Resources
Best Baby Sleep Resources
March 11, 2021

Best Baby Sleep Resources

Best Baby Sleep Resources.
Best Baby Sleep Resources

If there was a “most talked about” category for new parenthood, the topic of sleep would likely take the cake. How much sleep—or how little—both your baby and your entire family are getting is a popular topic among new and seasoned parents alike. And it’s not uncommon to take to the internet in hopes of finding a baby sleep resource that may help you all get a few extra winks.

There are a lot of sleep resources out there, but you’re likely too tired to evaluate them all on your own. So we’ve done it for you! Whether you want to dive in before your baby is born or you’re already deep in the trenches of sleep deprivation, these are the best, most popular resources that parents turn to when they’re in need of baby sleep info and a plan for better sleep.

Sleep 101

The Quick Take

A comprehensive primer on children’s sleep and a step-by-step plan on how to build healthy sleep habits from day one, written by a pediatrician with decades of experience.

What You Need to Know

Think of Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child as your intro to all things kids + sleep. Dr. Weissbluth does an excellent job of explaining the basics of day and night sleep and walks parents through solving all sorts of sleep problems, from things like helping your baby to fall asleep according to their natural rhythms to tackling nap issues.

The Bottom Line

A great all-encompassing sleep book that helps you both understand the science behind sleep and chart a path toward independent sleep. Although it’s packed with useful information, the book is a bit long and can be a lot to get through. We recommend reading it before your baby arrives so you’ll have more time to digest everything and get ahead of the game before you’re too sleep deprived.

The OG

The Quick Take

One of the original—and most popular—sleep training methods developed by a pediatrician and leading authority on children’s sleep problems.

What You Need to Know

If you’ve ever heard the term “cry it out” (CIO for short), then you’re more familiar with this popular book than you may know. Dr. Ferber’s sleep training philosophy has been around for decades and is one of the most widely used methods for parents looking for a better night’s sleep. The book uses research-backed info to explain why your little one may not be sleeping independently and offers a detailed plan to help your child fall and asleep and stay asleep through the night. (There’s a plan for tackling daytime sleep too.)

And don’t worry: although it does involve some crying, CIO does not mean leaving your child to cry alone for hours on end. The method may not be right for every family but is a completely safe and well-researched sleep training philosophy.

The Bottom Line

If you’re looking for a detailed, step-by-step plan to get your baby sleeping through the night, you’ll find it here. Just know there will likely be some crying involved.

The Five S’s

The Quick Take

Clear, concise and easy to digest information on how to calm your crying baby and help your newborn sleep longer from pediatrician and inventor of the Snoo Smart Sleeper Bassinet.

What You Need to Know

Swaddling, side/stomach positioning in your arms, shushing, swinging and sucking—these are the magical five S’s that you’ll learn about in this bestselling book from pediatrician and sleep expert Dr. Harvey Karp. Also covered are insights around infant sleep, bedsharing, breastfeeding, swaddling and SIDS.

The Bottom Line

Happiest Baby is a quick read packed with helpful takeaways on baby sleep, especially during those first few months of the fourth trimester when newborns are still seeking the womb-like environment. You won’t get a specific plan for helping your baby sleep here but you will get tons of useful info on how to calm your crying baby and ultimately build healthy sleep habits.

Smart and Funny

The Quick Take

Just as funny as it is informative (we actually laughed out loud many times while reading), this book, born from the popular sleep site that shares its name, is a must-read for any parent looking to learn more about baby sleep and help their child to learn how to fall asleep independently.

What You Need to Know

Sleep expert Alexis Dubief’s promise is simple: your baby is capable of sleeping through the night, and this book will show you how. Precious Little Sleep is smart, funny and filled with flexible, evidence-based tools to help you teach your child how to fall asleep—and stay asleep—without your help. Also covered are naps, night weaning and toddler/preschool sleep issues.

Note: be sure to also check out the author’s podcast and active Facebook group.

The Bottom Line

All of the Precious Little Sleep resources knock it out of the park in both explaining why sleep is so important for your little one and how to help them sleep independently. (The witty and approachable tone doesn’t hurt, either.) This is one of our all-time favorite sleep resources to recommend to new parents thanks to its approachability and clear, concise methodology.

12x12

The Quick Take

A limited crying solution that offers a detailed plan on how to help your baby sleep twelve hours at night (and three during the day) by twelve weeks old.

What You Need to Know

No, “12x12” isn’t a complicated math problem anyone’s going to ask you to solve. (Phew.) It’s a promise that your baby can sleep for twelve hours overnight by twelve weeks old, and it comes along with an extremely detailed plan to help you get there. It’s all based around a system of regular feeding intervals and strikes a nice middle ground between CIO and feed-to-sleep.

It’s worth noting that breastfeeding parents may find this method a bit trickier to navigate, so you’ll need to be open to feeding your baby pumped milk if you decide to explore this route.

The Bottom Line

If you’re the type of parent who loves a good plan of attack, 12x12 is the method for you. It’s detailed and does take a bit of planning and commitment, but it’s well worth it as it really does work.

The Sleep Lady Shuffle

The Quick Take

A gentle and effective approach that teaches your baby to sleep without (much) crying and works for parents who breast or bottle feed and for babies who room-share or sleep separately.

What You Need to Know

While the “Sleep Lady Shuffle” may sound a little strange, this sleep training method is a popular approach favored by parents who prefer a little less crying than some other sleep plans. This gentle plan teaches independent sleep through limited crying and the one-on-one support of a parent or caregiver. It works for children starting around six months old and up and can easily be tailored to meet your family’s particular needs.

A few things to note. This will take some time and effort on your part, so be aware of that before you dive in. And be sure to check out the Sleep Lady’s website for lots more info and resources.

The Bottom Line

If CIO doesn’t float your boat but you’re hoping to help your child sleep through the night, then the Sleep Lady is a good pick.

Breastfeeding-Friendly

The Quick Take

A comprehensive sleep guide that’s specifically for breastfeeding families from La Leche League International, a breastfeeding information, support and advocacy group.

What You Need to Know

Lots of parents who choose to breastfeed on demand and take a more baby-led approach to schedules and sleep tend to feel left out of the mainstream sleep training conversation. Enter Sweet Sleep, a sleep guide designed just for breastfeeding parents. It’s filled with valuable insights on safe sleep, sleep information for every age, how to guide your baby toward longer stretches of sleep when they’re ready and much more.

The Bottom Line

A great resource for breastfeeding parents looking for a child-led approach to sleep.

Feed, Wake, Sleep

The Quick Take

Written by a pediatrician and an infant sleep expert, Babywise is a schedule-based philosophy that helps you figure out how to synchronize your baby’s sleep, wake and eat times to help the whole family get more rest.

What You Need to Know

Another schedule-based approach to life with your little one, the Babywise philosophy is built around working toward a parent-guided feed/wake/sleep routine. Why? Because, according to the authors, a more consistent routine will lead to your baby establishing a feed-wake-sleep rhythm that will eventually lead to a continuous night of sleep.

The Bottom Line

If you’re not a schedule-driven person or would prefer to feed on demand, Babywise isn’t for you. But if you’re the type of person who thrives on a schedule and thinks your baby will, too, then this method is definitely worth a look.

More Sleep Resources

If you’re looking for a supportive place on the internet (yes, they do exist!) to help you learn how to get your child to fall asleep without any help from you, you’ll want to join Respectful Sleep Training/Learning. It’s a Facebook group that offers parent-to-parent support around helping your child learn how to fall asleep independently. The group’s own description summarizes it best: “This group is a safe haven from shaming and fear-mongering surrounding sleep training. We support each other in listening to our children, respecting their needs and ours, allowing and hearing their emotions, and trusting their capabilities.”

We love that this group supports all sleep training methods and that it offers peer-to-peer support (no sleep consultants, paid sleep services etc. allowed). It’s an awesome way to tap the expertise of other parents and find a sleep training method that’s right for you and your child.

And here are a few more infant sleep resources worth a look.

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