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The dreamfeed is the feeding you do in the 10-11 PM hour. You get baby, feed him/her without waking him up too much, and then put baby back down for the night. The idea is that your baby will then sleep longer through the night. Read Dreamfeed FAQs for more. It works for many babies! But not for all. Here are the latest poll results on the subject of the dreamfeed. You can find answers linked here. People also answered on my Facebook Page.
1. Did your baby do well with the dreamfeed right away or did you have to work at it for a time first?
Didn’t Work: 2
Worked Right Away!: 7
Took Some Time: 4
2. What time did you do the dreamfeed?
Leah said: “The time changed depending on her schedule, age, and how well the night was going. It started out at 11:00 so that she’d make it longer into the night, but staying up that late is hard for me, so I started moving it back until it was at 10:00 and it stayed there for a while, and now it’s at 9:30.”
3. Was your baby sensitive to the exact time the dreamfeed happened? (for example, did great if dreamfeed at 10:35 but not if it was at 10:45)
4. Did the dreamfeed seem to help baby sleep longer through the night/help baby wake up less during the night?
Jennifer said: “They woke up more, because they still woke up when they wanted. It did not help them sleep longer, just made me have to stay up later!”
5. What age did you drop the dreamfeed?
8-12 Weeks: 2
3-4 Months: 4
6 Months: 3
7 Months: 1
Still Going: 2
Do Not Remember: 1
6. Why did you drop the dreamfeed?
No Longer Needed (sleeping through the night): 5
To Avoid Disrupting Sleep: 2
Just Decided to Try It: 2
Wasn’t Working: 3
Lacey said: “He wasn’t waking up at all during the feeding, so I thought I’d try dropping it and it worked. The first couple of nights after dropping it, he did wake up at 5AM / 5:30AM so I went in and fed and also fed again at my preferred wake time of 7AM. After that, he slept until 7AM on his own and eventually until 7:30AM on his own. “
7.Would you try to do dreamfeed with your next baby?
8. Any words of wisdom for parents out there?
Jennifer said: “Just know it may not work for you and that’s ok!”
Leah said: “Besides being cozy, the dreamfeed is also a great time to make sure baby is at a comfortable temperature, and hasn’t leaked through her diaper. (I’d much rather do a diaper/pajama/sheets change at 10:00 than at 2:00am.)”
Lacey said: “Stick to a consistent schedule for morning wake up time and last bottle of the night! Let the baby cry it out unless of course you know something isn’t right!”
Natalie said: “Not ALL babies take a DF! I had assumed you could force it with any baby…but some it just doesn’t help. That being said, as frustrated as I was that my #2 wouldn’t take a DF and had a MOTN waking until 4 months, he also STTN 12 hours by 20 weeks. My #1 took much longer to sleep 12 hours since I kept the DF so long. So I think it balanced itself out pretty well.”
Brittany said: A dreamfeed should be just that, basically a feeding where they are asleep. Keep the lights off, no talking to them, keep them swaddled, etc. Have the least disturbances as possible so they don’t wake up too much and don’t want to go back to sleep.
Rochelle said: Just because something works for someone else (or even another baby) don’t feel stuck. I was frustrated that they weren’t extending their night feedings at all, and it seemed I was doing everything “right.” Don’t be afraid to try something if what you’re doing isn’t working.
Ashley said: Track your progress with it. I really wish I would have logged with my first son. It’s such a sanity saver! Anyhow, the only way you will know the dreamfeed works for you is if track it. It can be annoying at times to wake your sleeping baby to feed him when you are wanting to go to bed. I rarely napped before the dreamfeed, but suggest it as a good idea in the early newborn weeks Definitely keep it as short and sweet as you can, because baby should not think it is a playtime.