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How to deal with a sleep trained baby who is sick?

Happy 2022! The past few weeks since we got back from Boracay have been crazy. Our family was not spared from the covid surge and I, the kids and our nanny all came down with symptoms within a week of our return from vacation. Thankfully, we are all recovered now, while my youngest has just finished her antibiotics for pneumonia, one of the effects of Covid.

With regards to sleep, I tried as much as possible to stick to our normal schedule. My 5 year old was the first child to come down with symptoms. 2 days of high fever but night sleep was not really interrupted. If she did wake, would give medicine and water and she would go back to sleep. Second day she took a long nap and was on the road to recovery after that.

My youngest who had just turned 1 year old came down with a bad runny nose, congestion and fever. She still slept in her own bed but the first night, she woke multiple times. I will not leave my sick child calling or crying for me so I always tended right away when she would wake up. When I would go to her, I would give medicine and wipe her nose. The first night I even fed milk at 11pm! Second night things were better though we were getting early wake ups due to congestion. I also slept in the room for 2 nights so I could monitor her breathing, but she always slept in a crib. I thought I would share some advise dealing with illnes and a sleep trained child.

1. Still be as consistent as possible in terms of sleeping space. Your baby is sick and needs to sleep so if your baby is sleep trained, there is no reason to have him sleep anywhere except in a crib. You can always sleep in the same room to monitor your baby if needed.

2. Try and follow a schedule, but you can let your baby sleep on demand if needed. No need to wake from naps and you can of course put to bed earlier if your baby is tired. Sleep will help with recovery!

3. If you need to wake in the middle of the night to give medicine, just put back in the crib to resettle when done. A baby who knows how to self settle and resettle should also be able to do so as well when sick.

4. Don’t create bad habits you cannot sustain! While you should definitely give more attention and cuddles when your baby is sick, that doesn’t mean you need to carry to sleep or co sleep. A sick baby will most likely be super tired by the time his normal nap or bedtime comes around.

Hoping everyone stays safe!

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