Ways to Help a 10-Month-Old Sleep Through the Night

By Michelle Blessing
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Getting your 10-month-old to sleep through the night can be a daunting task for both new and veteran parents. Some babies sleep through the night at a very early age, while others need assistance to reach that point. Useful tips will help you and your baby begin sleeping through the night.

End Nighttime Feedings

Your 10-month-old could be waking through the night to eat. Feeding her in the middle of the night encourages this habit, so you are perpetuating the nighttime waking. Give your baby her regular evening meal, followed by a bottle about an hour before bedtime. When she wakes for her nighttime feeding (she will for several days or so), comfort her but do not give her the bottle. She eventually will make the association of night with sleeping and not eating.

Dark Shades and White Noise

Light and noise can be detrimental to a good night's sleep for anyone, but especially for a 10-month-old, according to "What To Expect The First Year." Use room-darkening shades and draw them closed at night to prevent outside light (from streetlights, cars or the moon) from filtering in and waking your baby. A white noise machine or fan provides gentle background noise, which is comforting and blocks out any loud distractions potentially interrupting your 10-month-old's sleep.

A Little Bit of You

A baby who co-sleeps can have a more difficult time transitioning and sleeping through the night than a baby who starts sleeping in a crib from birth. Several suggestions make it easier for you and your baby to get to sleep at night. Place a play yard with her blankets in your room. She will be close but have distance from your bed. Comfort her using gentle touch and words, but do not pick her up and put her in your bed. Do this several nights until she is sleeping soundly. You can then use the same idea to sleep in the crib, with you staying in her room until she falls asleep, following the same routine as before.

Systematic Waking

Waking your baby in the middle of the night may seem counterproductive to getting him to sleep through the night. However, according to "What To Expect The First Year," this method will work over time. You keep a log of your 10-month-old's nighttime wakings, writing down the time and duration of the crying period. Do this for a few days to establish a pattern. You will then wake up about 30 minutes prior to the first period and wake your baby. You will comfort and put your baby back to sleep however you would if he woke up on his own. Do the same each time your baby wakes in the middle of the night for a few days. Gradually increase the time between wakings in 15-minute increments (45 minutes the next time, an hour and so on) until your 10-month-old is no longer waking during the middle of the night.

About the Author

Michelle Blessing has experience in child development, parenting, social relationships and mental health, enhanced by her work as a clinical therapist and parent educator. Blessing's work has appeared in various online publications. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in sociology from Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania and is pursuing her master's degree in psychology with a specialization in applied behavior analysis.