Seven-month-old still not sleeping through the night

(127 Posts)
Lookydo Thu 27-Dec-07 11:57:46

My ds is nearly seven months old and is still not sleeping through the night. Any advice/tips as to what we can try to get him to sleep through? Don't think we can face Controlled Crying, but we're considering getting dh to try a bottle of water in the night - the theory being it won't be worth ds waking up for. At the moment he wakes up and wants to breastfeed 3 or 4 times a night. Sometimes I hear him wake and he DOES go back to sleep, so it's not as though he can't put himself back to sleep. In the day he's taking solids well - 3 meals a day - and has 2 formula feeds aswell. He goes down really well at 7.30pm and I don't feed him to sleep or anything. In fact, I feel rather cheated because I feel like I've followed all the advice and made sure we haven't created any bad sleep habits - ie. feeding to sleep, rocking to sleep etc. So why isn't he sleeping through? Any advice/your experiences gratefully received.

NB He sleeps in a cot in his own room (only moved him out of our room 6 weeks ago). He is teething at the moment, but as he's never slept through the night I don't know how much longer I can keep making excuses for why he's waking up.

I know some mumsnetters think you should just live with a situation like this, but I really want to change it if I can. I just keep imagining what it'll be like in a year's time when I still haven't slept properly and I'll look back to this period and wished I'd bloody done something! I feel SOOO knackered all the time. And surely I shouldn't still be a walking zombie by now. Also, my health visitor said that if you don't get the sleeping through cracked before the 8 month stage, the waking habit can become very ingrained.


frazzledbutcalm Thu 27-Dec-07 13:58:39

I'm a firm believer in not just living with the situation. tbh, i dont understand why ds isn't sleeping thru, you're doing all the right things by the sound of it. Just make sure you stick to bedtime routine firmly. don't feed him in night, try water, it may work. failing that i think controlled crying may be only option. What do you do now when he cries? You need to leave him in cot, stroke head to soothe him, try not to talk, no lights. Do same thing every night, don't waiver from your pattern. It will be very tiring but it should take less than a week. i have 4 dc and all sleep thru night, i've always had bedtime routine from early age with all of them.

TrinityTheRedNosedRhino Thu 27-Dec-07 14:03:21

gecko is 11 months now and has never slept through

she did sleep 6 hours straight for 10 days in a row at about 5 months but that is just a distant memory.....

katwith3wisemen Thu 27-Dec-07 14:14:46

12 months now and no sign of a full nights sleep yet.

The only consolation I have is that I have 2 others who were exactly the same at this age and they are wonderful sleepers now.

Darned if I can remember when that happened though... 2 ? 3 ?? 4 ???

moondog Thu 27-Dec-07 14:16:39

I wouldn't expect any baby under 12mths to slepp through.

TrinityTheRedNosedRhino Thu 27-Dec-07 14:19:20

me either moondog
My other 2 seemed to grasp the concert along with a grasp on language and reasoning at about 2 hmm

Its just that I feel like my brain is melting throught lack of sleep

dd2 started to sleep through 2 months after gecko was born. I haven't had more than 3 hours straight for 2 and a half years, it's getting me down

moondog Thu 27-Dec-07 14:23:42

Ah well, at 11 months, I would be expecting stuff to change actually.

At that age,I did do a bit o ignoring at night when I knew they (both breastfed on demand) were full.

frazzledbutcalm Thu 27-Dec-07 14:28:08

dc1 slept thru from 12 weeks, dc2 from 6 weeks, dc 3 from 5 months, dc4 from 6 months. it can be done and i think its abnormal not to sleep thru! Sometimes they just need training!

moondog Thu 27-Dec-07 14:30:33

Ah yes,Frazzled, that's all well and good if you consider children are little more than pets to be bent to your control and convenience. hmm

<nutter alert>

frazzledbutcalm Thu 27-Dec-07 14:35:20

'Scuse me?? I love my kids to bits and certainly don't think of them or treat them as pets!!!! As all of mine have slept thru so i know it can be done. Don't you teach children how to walk, talk, eat, play etc? Its just the same teaching them how to sleep.

moondog Thu 27-Dec-07 14:37:48

beep beep beep!!!

juuule Thu 27-Dec-07 14:39:04

Frazzledbutcalm - I think quite a bit is due to good fortune that your children slept through so early.
If it's just one weeks 'training' that's involved, why weren't all your children sleeping through from 6weeks or 12weeks? How did you decide when was the time to do the weeks 'training'?
It isn't abnormal not to sleep through at this age.

juuule Thu 27-Dec-07 14:41:45

And no, I didn't 'teach' my children to walk, talk, eathmm, playhmm they seemed to manage it quite well themselves when they were ready. Gave them the right environment to develop maybe.

TrinityTheRedNosedRhino Thu 27-Dec-07 14:41:54

beeep beeeep beeeep lol grin

moondog, I love you to bits, you're hilarious

moondog Thu 27-Dec-07 14:43:25

You taking the piss Trin??grin

TrinityTheRedNosedRhino Thu 27-Dec-07 14:44:45

don't be suspicious, I laughed out loud at the beep beep thing

frazzledbutcalm Thu 27-Dec-07 14:44:58

I didnt mean abnormal, i just mean its also normal to sleep thru. Lots of people just accept that babies dont sleep thru the night, it doesnt always have to be like that. i didnt do weeks training, i just had bedtime routine that i stuck to from only few weeks of age. My first two slept thru easily, the next two i had to help them a bit. all babies may not sleep thru but books, supernanny etc all say sleep and other habits take less than a week to sort out. it takes lots of patience and perserverence and people usually give up as the first few days can be really tough.

frazzledbutcalm Thu 27-Dec-07 14:47:29

By teaching to walk, talk, eat i mean you interact with them, enable them to learn from you, not physically make them do it. I dont think im explaining myself very well.

moondog Thu 27-Dec-07 14:48:32

No, you're not.

NineUnlovelyTinselDecorations Thu 27-Dec-07 14:53:00

Lookydo there are probably some things you can do to help the situation but unless you are prepared to do CC (and I am not personally) then it takes time and patience. IMO children sleep through when they are ready.

In the meantime I would do several things to help yourself.

1) Ignore crap HV advice. They are not sleep experts. Or nutrition experts. Or any kind of expert actually. Whenever a HV tells you that you have a deadline of getting your child to do something or they will never do it, you can cheerfully and safely ignore their advice afterwards. What a load of pants. Your baby will do a lot of things now that he will grow out of - doing something at 6 months doesn't make it a 'habit' that needs to be cured.

2) Stop answering questions about when your baby is sleeping through, or feeling like you have to make excuses. Why on earth should you? When faced with enquiries, just say he is doing really well thank you. It's nobody else's business but yours.

3) Stop feeling that you are doing something wrong. YOUR baby isn't sleeping through yet and he isn't some mythical book baby who plays by the rules. He is a human being and will reach his developmental milestones in his own good time, including sleeping. PMSL at the idea that you have to teach your child to do everything. You can't be in control of every aspect of a child's life.

4) Try the No Cry Sleep Solution for gentle ideas about helping your DS sleep. Then accept that there is only so much you can do. Really. Even the baby trainers who go in for CC don't have all the answers - my friend's little girl slept like a dream at 6m with CC but at 16m she is up for hours every night and has been for months.

aberdeenhiker Thu 27-Dec-07 14:57:52

I think the thing is that Lookydo says her ds is up 3-4 times a night - not once! I feel for you - and I've been there (this time last year exactly).

My DS did the same thing at 6.5 months. For him it was a regression, as he'd been sleeping for longer stretches. We realized that he didn't need to get up to feed, but we'd been travelling and he'd gotten into bad habits. We ended up using controlled crying for two nights. Water just infuriated him - way more than just giving him a back rub (while he was in his cot). After that he always slept for a solid stretch and only woke once.

But - he didn't sleep through the night completely until 12 months (and still doesn't sometimes) because of hunger. We used to get up and I'd breastfeed him at 4-5am then he'd go back down until 7am. That was reasonable though and I was able to get enough sleep by going to bed early that I was healthy and happy too.

Good luck! I remember how tough this is (and can't believe we're going to go through this again - I'm due in June, that's what happens when your first starts to sleep through!)

NineUnlovelyTinselDecorations Thu 27-Dec-07 15:05:15

It is perfectly normal for a baby to be awake that many times at 6 months though. As long as it is just a quick feed and straight to sleep I think that is really common. You can cope better with it by co sleeping or at least having the baby in the room next to you. I wouldn't say it was easy (ha!) but nothing about having a baby is easy is it? I still wouldn't do CC but each to their own.

frazzledbutcalm Thu 27-Dec-07 15:08:45

Everyone - i don't think you have to teach children how to do things, that isnt what i meant. I mean, they learn everything from you by watching your everyday life. Children are mostly how they are because they've watched and learned from you. I think its fantastic the way their personalities develop and part of that is from mum and dads interaction. You're making me sound like some kind of weirdo but things are just being taken out of context.
Aberdeen - congratulations. smile

needmorecoffee Thu 27-Dec-07 15:10:16

its pretty normal in my opinion. Of my 4, only 1 slept the night before 1 year old.
There's no excuses except that he is a little baby and babies think of their convenience, not yours. My 1st and 4th didn't sleep through till 3.
If he naps during the day, have a nap then yourself. It will pass and one day he will be a stinky teenager and you will be shrieking 'its 3pm, are you ever getting up?!'

blueshoes Thu 27-Dec-07 15:51:25

frazzled, you taught your children to sleep through from an early age by allowing them the opportunity to watch and learn from you? What part of my dd's and ds' observing their comatose mother's form in bed did they not get?

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