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Extinction Method for Sleep Training
An_242749 posted:
I hope you'll indulge me for this long sleep question:

We finally tried Extinction after weeks of deliberation and decided to give
ourselves a 60 minute deadline. The first night, Anjali (now 5+
months old) woke up once, cried for 52 minutes, and then slept til
morning. The second night, she cried once for 30 minutes, then slept
til morning. The third night it was just 7 minutes and then she slept
until morning. So we thought, "Yay! It worked, miraculous!" Right?

On the 4th night, oddly enough, she woke up THREE times and cried each
time for 35-40 minutes. What gives? I am so confused. I really thought
we were on to something with her decreasing the CIO times each night.
I finally, after the third wake-up, went in and nursed her until she
fell asleep. She did not eat much. And now I'm worried that I've re-introduced that "bad" association.

What am I supposed to do on this 5th night? My husband thinks we'll
need to start over again, but I'm wondering if the poor kid needs a
break. Anyone experience this sort of thing? Did Extinction NOT work
for anyone? I've never heard of it not working for anyone, so I'm
confused...and really looking to hear your feedback! BTW, she's a great napper (3 naps a day, 90 mins each) and sleep around 7:15pm at night. A final note: every parent chooses the sleep training method that suits their family best. Please no judgments or comments about our choice of using CIO; just honest and helpful feedback is appreciated. Thank you!

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sdadkin responded:
You have to keep with it if you want it to work. They say when you first try it you should go back in the room after 5 minutes then 10 minutes then 15... You're not supposed to say much either. It's really hard to listen to them cry, but in the end it's worth it when they start falling asleep on their own. You guys were on the right track. If she wakes up like that again on the 5th night you are just supposed to start over like your husband said.

This method worked for our now 2 1/2 year old and our 8 month old. Our oldest is usually a good sleeper until he comes home after spending the night with a grandparent. Then we kind of have to do the CIO method with him again for a couple of nights. But I have found it's the only thing that works!
jminer333 responded:
My husband and I used the same method. We started when he was just a couple weeks old. Our son also "retreated back after a few nights. We stuck with it though and he has slept through the night since he was 5 weeks (he's now 8 months). I definitely think nursing her will make it harder. Keep at it and it should get better. Its hard hearing them cry, but the sooner they are on aschedule the easier it will be for you. Good luck.

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