As parents, it’s at times crucial to have a few tricks up our sleeves. And especially when it comes to getting our little ones to sleep.

For those like me who have been struggling to get their babies to go to bed in their crib, there is one specific crib adjustment that seemed to do the trick for me: using a pillow.

You probably are thinking how unsafe it is for loose blankets, pillows or stuffed animals to be in the crib with the baby—and it is. Just hear me out.

As a preface to this trick, this has been my current situation:

My little guy hates sleeping in his crib. He had no problems sleeping in the bassinet next to my bed, but as now outgrown it. He can sleep just about anywhere, in his swing, in the carseat, stroller, my Boppy pillow while on my bed, and his favorite on me.

Now I know it is the worst thing in the world to sleep with your baby, which is why I have been determined to get him into his crib. But the second I put him down, even when he is in the deepest slumber, he immediately starts screaming. If I pick him up and put him back on my chest, he instantly knocks out.

This means lots of sleepless nights, half-sleeping nights, and times when I fall asleep myself with him on me in between breastfeeding sessions in the middle of the night (please don’t judge me, I am trying my best to not let this happen, but it’s easier said than done.)

At first I thought it was a “he needs Mommy” kind of thing where I spoiled him to the point that he can only sleep on me, with me after all the cuddling we have done up until now. But he and does sleep elsewhere so that can’t be it.

Then I noticed that everywhere he sleeps is on some kind of incline so that he isn’t sleeping flat.

It’s important to note that my son has always been gassy, and there have been times when he cries in the middle of the night and as soon as I pick him up he burps, even after burping before being put down. My logic believes that it’s just more comfortable for him to be on an incline if he has some kind of acid reflux, plus it’s the way he has grown accustomed to sleeping (his bassinet was at an incline).

The Trick To End All Night Terrors

Determined to get this kid to sleep in his own bed, I did some research and found something that has so far, worked pretty well.

The trick is to lift the mattress so that the baby’s head is elevated. This is perfect for when baby is sick and the pediatrician recommends to do so to reveal asthma or congestion symptoms.

There are crib wedges made specifically for this reason such as the Dex Baby Safe Lift Universal Crib Wedge Cushion, which is sold at Babes R Us and is doctor approved. This wedge goes underneath the fitted sheet so there is not risk of suffocation.

However, with this option sold out, parents might have to improvise.

Place a pillow UNDERNEATH the mattress on the side where the baby’s head lies. Never put the pillow directly in the crib, on top of the mattress and under the baby’s head because this is a huge suffocation risk. However, this will do the trick and elevate the

There are countless other crib wedges sold online, but just make sure you put these underneath the mattress as well.

There are even products to lift the crib legs off the floor, which are another alternative option.

The Results

Since propping his head up, my little guy actually lets us put him in the crib. We are even taking day time naps in the crib, and spending a few minutes just hanging out with me sitting beside him so he can get comfortable and not feel like his bed is a punishment.

He still wakes up 2-3 times throughout the night to eat (he is now 4 months old, still breastfeeding), but at least now the time it takes me to get him to even lay down on his own as been reduced greatly.

Have you tried this crib trick, and did it help your baby sleep at night? Tell me about it in the comments.

Photo: Valentina Powers | Flickr

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