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Book Review -- On Becoming Baby Wise

Book Title: On Becoming Baby Wise

Author: Gary Ezzo

Year of Publication: 2001 (Revised & Expand)

Publisher: Parent-Wise Solutions, Inc

Pages: 252

Author’s Web-site : http://www.gfi.org

Full Book Available in: English

You should read this book if you…

Want a way to prepare for your baby’s arrival, complete with how and when to feed, what activities to do when awake with a newborn and when to encourage them to sleep.

“In a nut shell”…

Most babies on this plan sleep for 6-9 hours in a row, at night, by the time they are 8-10 weeks old. The baby will sleep though the night sooner on this plan so the mother can get more sleep at night as well. The plan takes you from birth through 6 months.

Key Ideas…

From birth to 8 weeks old you feed your baby every 2.5 to 3 hours from the BEGINNING of one feeding to the beginning of the next.

There are 8 feedings in a 24-hour period.

Add an extra feeding if you feel your baby needs it or if you feel you need to in order to maintain your breast milk supply or feel extra full in your breasts.

You do not rock your baby to sleep, but put him in his crib awake so he learns to fall asleep on his own.

Action Steps…

There are 3 main events that you need to remember in using this schedule: Feeding Time, Awake Time, and Nap Time, in that order.

This is an example of a 3-hour interval for you to see how it would work. If your baby needs to start with 2.5 hours instead of a full 3 hours, feel free to adjust it, as YOUR baby needs. The TOTAL awake time, including feeding and awake time, should be 90 minutes, with naptime also being 90 minutes, totaling the 3-hour schedule. This eventually will be adjusted to a 4-hour schedule, as your baby grows, with the awake time lengthening. At 24 weeks old (8 months old), your baby’s mealtimes should begin to line up with the family’s meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner.

It took me a few weeks to get it all correct. Be patient with yourself and keep trying!

Here is a sample schedule. Write-in your own time that you STARTED feeding the baby and then add 2.5 or 3 hours to that 1st time you started feeding baby.

Early Morning: 7:00 am

1. Feed: Hold baby and begin to feed him (breast or bottle, it doesn’t matter on this program, although they like breastfeeding). After about 15-45 minutes on the first breast (or half way through his bottle) take him off the breast or bottle and burp him. Then start on the other breast (rest of the bottle). Burp after he is done. Diaper change as needed or to keep him awake enough to take a nice good feeding.

2. Awake time: Rock and sing to baby. Put baby in his crib to watch a mobile.

3. Nap: Put your baby in his crib (dark and quiet) for a nap.

Midmorning: 10:00 am

1. Feed: Hold baby and nurse him on the breast that you ended your last feeding on or give him a bottle. Follow burping directions above. Change diaper when needed.

2. Awake time: Take baby for a walk in a stroller or visit neighbors or do errands. Hopefully he stays awake for the view.

3. Nap: Put baby in his crib.

Afternoon: 1:00 pm

1. Feed: See directions above.

2. Awake time: Give your baby a bath and place him in the car seat near a window.

3. Nap: Lay him down in his crib.

Late Afternoon: 4:00 pm

1. Feed: See directions above.

2. Awake time: Family Time. Baby is in a playpen or bouncy seat watching Mother make beds or fix meals.

3. Nap: Put baby in crib for nap.

Early Evening: 7:00 pm

1. Feed: See directions above.

2. Awake time: If he seems very sleepy, go ahead and put him back to in his crib to sleep after you finish his full feeding.

3. Nap: He may already be asleep for his “Awake time” this is fine at this feeding time.

Late Evening: 10:00 pm

1. Feed: See directions above.

2. Nap: Back to bed.

Middle of the Night: 1:00 am and 4:00 am

1. Feed: See directions above.

2. Change diaper.

3. Put the baby back to bed!

NOTE: After waking him for this feeding, do not wake him up again, but do NOT LET HIM SLEEP LONGER THAN FIVE HOURS AT NIGHT FOR THE FIRST FOUR WEEKS OF LIFE.

Miscellaneous…

The authors say not to put your baby in your bed with you. You won’t worry about rolling over onto baby or the baby falling out of the bed. I put the baby’s crib or bassinette in my bedroom.

The author created a “HEALTHY BABY GROWN CHART” where you put a checkmark for each feeding on a piece of paper that has a grid.

Along the top are the days of the week.

Down the list on the left side of the paper there are four rows:

There is a row to record each time the baby:

1) is fed, (put a check mark)

2) has a wet diaper, (put a check mark)

3) this row is for a brief description of each wet diaper (NOTE: if the diaper has yellow/concentrated urine this is not normal and you will need to see a health care provider, the color should be light yellow to clear)

4) has a bowel movement.

IT WAS VERY HELPFUL FOR ME TO WRITE DOWN WHEN/# OF WET/DIRTY DIAPERS PER DAY TO SHOW MY DOCTOR.  This also helped me to know they were getting enough food and were healthy.

How this has changed my parenting…

It gave me direction and a plan. My babies were able to sleep through the night easily, allowing me more rest as well.

I was thankful that they were able to develop and grow during their nice long sleep. I think it helped them to be smarter because their brains and bodies grow when they sleep.

I believe it also helped them have good sleep habits as older children, which helps them to be as rested as possible.

It also gave me a standard schedule I could plan on for my days.

© 2011 The Family Project

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