I need help, so sleep deprived its ridiculous

(27 Posts)

Dd is up every 2 hours, sometimes I can shush her back. To sleep for a short while but if she wakes the quickest way to get her back to sleep is bf her. I am on my knees with exhaustion as I am an insomniac so by the time I've got back to sleep she's awake again. Sometimes I'm awake the whole time between feeds like last night as she's so noisy in her sleep I'm constantly on edge that she'll wake up again.
Please don't suggest co sleeping as I will not sleep at all that way can barely stand Dh in bed with me
How can I stretch her feeds out a bit more?
Before her 12 week growth spurt she was doing a good 5/6/sometimes7 hour stretch before the first feed and then a 4/5 hour stretch but since then she's every 2 hours and I can barely focus I'm so tired. I've got a 4 year old as well so cannot catch up in the day plus dd is a rubbish napper.
Wtf can I do? I don't want to give formula but I'm seriously thinking about it. Oh and I can't express, can't seem to get anything. I have no idea if she would take a bottle anyway. There's nothing I can do is there? I'm stuck aren't I?

Cavort Fri 14-Mar-14 08:09:38

How old is she now? Sounds like sleep regression to me. You just need to weather the storm for 4-6 weeks and then it should get better, although once they reach 4 months the way they sleep changes forever.

Branleuse Fri 14-Mar-14 08:12:11

put her in another room but close by. youll hear her if she cries but you wont hear every snuffle.
that way youve got a fighting chance of getting back to sleep between feeds.

Prey I thought I said her age, she's 14 weeks. Still a bit too early to put in her own room I think as much as I'd like to.

What's sleep regression? Does it get better? All you hear about is babies who sleep thru and I thought her sleep was going so well.

Moggy72 Fri 14-Mar-14 09:15:29

OP you mentioned that you try and pump but get nothing. Are you sure you still have a good milk supply ? Could she be hungry and not getting enough milk ? Maybe just do formula at night ?

CelticPromise Fri 14-Mar-14 09:20:35

Plenty of mothers struggle to pump but still have a good supply. Have you ever tried hand expressing OP? Some do better with it. Can you try to tank her up as much as poss in the evenings? Can you visit a bf group and find out how others have got through it? Sounds normal, but that doesn't help you.

Mog if op really did have a milk supply issue, and it doesn't sound that way, not bfing in the night would be a surefire way to make it worse.

TheresLotsOfFarmyardAnimals Fri 14-Mar-14 09:24:48

I've copied and pasted from another thread I posted on. These are things to try that may help you. Please remember that feeding to sleep is totally natural and a good way to get babies to fall asleep in the beginning, it can just backfire for some at 4 months. Anyway, here you go:

The 4 month regression comes about when a baby does not know how to put themselves to sleep. Your baby has a sleep association of being fed to sleep and so he needs you to do this.

A good way for a baby to learn how to fall asleep on their own is the shh-pat method, it's perfect for 15 weeks old. It does take up to two weeks for them to get the idea of it but it is gentle and not a crying technique. See this link for how to do it www.mybabysleepguide.com/2009/01/shhpat.html

Another thing it so avoid overtiredness as at this age, sleep = more sleep. I like this link for awake time length by age. It is just a guide but it really helped me www.mybabysleepguide.com/2009/02/wake-time.html.

As your baby is likely to still need 1-2 night feeds at this age, try and set a time limit so if bedtime is 10pm there can be milk then and maybe 2am and 6am?

I hope this helps.

I agree with pps (but not Moggy I'm afraid, way to worry someone unnecessarily!) that this is probably just a storm (albeit a very miserable one) to be weathered.
But when I was at my absolute wits end with sleep deprivation, I would go to bed in another room and leave DH in with DS, so DS was not alone, but perhaps he couldn't smell me and want milk as much. Sometimes we managed a 4 or 5 hour stretch. Would that be an option for you?

My mum asked if I had enough milk. I'm pretty sure she's getting enough. She'd be a lot crankier if not I think and she's a happy content baby.
Thanks for the links farmyard I will have a look. Will try to rope dh in a bit more see if that helps. Will also try shush pat as sometimes she can be shushed and patted back to sleep so long as she's not hungry.

TheresLotsOfFarmyardAnimals Fri 14-Mar-14 09:47:59

Will she take a dummy too? Sometimes when I heard DS grizzle, I could stick a dummy in and get another hour or two.

Also, I used to make DH do Friday nights and only get me if a feed was needed. I would sleep on the sofa bed with ear plugs and he would settle afterwards etc. The one good night a week made a huge difference to me.

I tried a dummy! She kept spitting it out and grinning at me hmm

Cakeismymaster Fri 14-Mar-14 11:41:08

ninja I really feel your pain. At 12 weeks I had dd just like yours, doing 6 and 7 hour stretches after bedtime then a feed and back down for another 4 hours. Then I have no idea what changed, just like you, and it changed to feeding every 2 hours.
The bad news is she is now 26 weeks and is still doing it...although has done a couple of 4 hr stretches s

Cakeismymaster Fri 14-Mar-14 11:41:38

Sorry - since introducing solids. She is ebf by the way and also dummy refuser.

Oh god cake, I feel for you. How have you survived?

ThoughtsPlease Fri 14-Mar-14 13:57:04

I second put her in her own room, or you may well end up setting this as a pattern.

If you need sleep, I believe you need to do this.

Allow her chance to settle back to sleep without you close by. She doesn't need feeding 2 hourly through the night.

Up the day feeds as much as possible.

I have 3 DC ebf, who slept 12 hours without feeding from when they were 7-12 weeks old. It isn't down to luck it is routine.

Thanks thought, I appreciate the advice but I want to follow the guidelines as much as poss for SIDS so will keep her in the same room as me at night until she outgrows her crib. I know I might get more sleep but I'd rather figure out a different way while she's still so little.
I know she doesn't always need a feed but its the quickest way to get her to sleep again if shushing and jiggling in the crib doesn't work. Will be feeding her as much as poss but she's playing silly buggers at the mo and not feeding as much and fussin a bit.

FurryGiraffe Fri 14-Mar-14 14:16:13

Possibly a silly question but do you use earplugs? I found they drowned out some of the snuffly sleep noises but I still heard DS when he woke. It also helped when I switched sides with DH so I was further away from DS- cuts down on noise and milk smell!

FurryGiraffe Fri 14-Mar-14 14:19:02

Oh I also found that switching from iphone fiddling and to listening to audiobooks during feeds helped me get back to sleep more easily.

leedy Fri 14-Mar-14 14:22:30

" It isn't down to luck it is routine."

Hmm, yes, I had a friend who said that about her first two: all about the routine, that's why they slept so well, no bad sleep associations, all through my hard work, careful tweaking of feeding and nap patterns, fantastic parenting, etc. Until she got child #3, the Sleep Resister, and realized that you can help it along a bit, but mostly, it is just luck.

I had no routine whatsoever, cared not a whit about rods for my own back, bad habits, "setting a pattern", etc., child the first was a terrible sleeper, child the second mostly slept through from 8 weeks (with blips for teething and developmental spurts). I also think full night weaning at 14 weeks is a bad idea, a lot of babies genuinely do need milk at night for both calories and comfort even if you've tanked them up during the day and they're not "supposed to".

Agree with the PPs who said it's a (horrible) storm to be weathered. Here's a good post about the 4 month sleep regression:
askmoxie.org/blog/2013/05/should-you-sleep-train-your-4-month-old.html

(I also like askmoxie.org/blog/2005/12/quick_and_dirty.html)

Also if you're having difficulty dropping off between feeds, have you tried magnesium supplements? A lot of new mums are mildly magnesium deficient and one of the symptoms is insomnia, I found my ability to conk out after feeds greatly improved when I started taking it.

LydiaLunches Fri 14-Mar-14 14:28:06

Second the ear plugs suggestion OP, got me through to 4-5 months in the same room.

Thanks guys will look t h links and get me some earplugs. And some magnesium. Every little helps I hope. Really appreciate the replies.

leedy Fri 14-Mar-14 14:54:18

Oh yeah, earplugs good too. Also block out DP's snoring...

MintTeaForMe Fri 14-Mar-14 16:03:07

I know she doesn't always need a feed but its the quickest way to get her to sleep again if shushing and jiggling in the crib doesn't work

If you are really really sleep deprived, you're not doing yourself any favours long term by teaching her that the way to go back to sleep is to be fed to sleep. How long do you spend shushing / jiggling for before you give up and offer a feed? Maybe try leaving her to settle before taking any kind of action?

I was like you OP, turned into an insomniac the moment my ds was born, so i tried really hard to break the link between sleep and feeding, because I knew that if he learnt to associate one with the other I'd be up with him every 45 minutes (he was a 45 minute sleeper; I HAD to teach him to settle with patting or just a hand reassuring him).

And sorry if you don't feel you want to do it, but giving my son a bottle of formula at bedtime was helpful I think.

Good luck

How long should I shush her for before I give up then?

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