I have decided to do some sleep training with my baby. Please don't try to convince me not to, I'm going to completely lose my sanity if I don't get some sleep soon and my baby is also showing signs of sleep deprivation and is not her normal happy self lately. I just need some help figuring out exactly how I should do it.
History: She will be 5 months on the 14th. She's never been a great sleeper but some times have been worse than others. Newborn days were typical newborn days, but then from about 2.5-3.5 months, things were much better, she would sleep a stretch of 5-8 hours, and was up 1-3 times per night after that initial chunk. Totally doable and I would be so happy if we could get back to that. Over the last month, her sleep has been getting progressively worse. The last 2 nights she has been up every 30-90 minutes. About half the time I am able to pop her paci back in her mouth and she'll fall back asleep, but the other half that doesn't work and I'll have to nurse and/or rock her back to sleep, sometimes taking up to 45 minutes before I can put her back down without her screaming. I am beyond exhausted and ready to do something about it.
Questions/Concerns: She is still swaddled (Halo sleep sack with "wings"). Not rolling yet - can roll up on her side, but seems like she has a ways to go before she'll figure out the full roll. During her month of good sleep, I think she really needed the swaddle, but now I'm not convinced it's helping. She occasionally gets her hands up by her mouth and it wakes her up. Seems like she's fighting the swaddle a bit. So question - do I quit swaddling at the same time? We have experimented a bit with taking one arm out, but then she knocks the paci out of her mouth and can't sleep. My gut tells me that we should do both at the same time so she can maybe use her hands to self-soothe, but then I think I'd have to take away the swaddle and the paci, and that seems like a lot of things to take away at the same time.
Other info: She did have an ear infection about a month ago, but has had her 4-month appointment and another clinic visit since then and ears were clear both times. She has not been showing the same symptoms of ear infection that she had (fever, pink eye) since then. I was considering starting last weekend but she had a few days in a row where she didn't poop and seemed very uncomfortable from that, so I put it off. That is cleared up now. No other illness that I know of.
I think I will start with doing checks (3 min, 5, 10, etc), but I'm not opposed to extinction if necessary. I am not planning on night weaning at this point because I know she's still young for that, but I'd like to get back to 1-2 feedings again. She is in the 73rd percentile for weight and nurses like a champ, so I know that's not an issue AT ALL. She's EBF and I don't want to start food til 6 mo. I might try something like no nursing before 1am? We aim for sleeping by 6:30-7pm, and I have to wake her at 6:15 to get ready and to daycare/work on time.
Anyone have tips for me going into this, or want to share their sleep training experiences??
Sorry this was so long and rambling, I can hardly put together cohesive thoughts at this point... Thanks if you read it all.