EBF DD doesn't sleep. Formula?

(31 Posts)
NotSoNervous Sun 24-Mar-13 09:10:56

I have a 5m old DD1. She is EBF but has had formula twice before in emergencies. Since she was a newborn she has never slept much in the day and less at night and she would want feeding between every 1-2 hours.

At about 3m old she started going longer at night and would sometimes go up to 5 hours which was amazing, but this only lasted 2 weeks and one were back to every 2 hours on the dot sad

The thing is now I'm really starting to struggle with getting up, I just feel shattered all the time. When I feed her during the night, ill tickle her feet, blow her onto her face, wind her and try to just wake her up abit more then latch her on again hoping she will have a good feed and sleep longer but within at least 2 dummy sucks she's sound asleep again. I did use to try and change her nappy in the night but that never worked either.

DP keeps telling me to give her FF because people have told him she will go longer at night but I've been saying no shell sleep when she's ready but now I'm getting desperate. When she's had a bottle of FF she has seemed to go longer between her next feed but I'm not sure if this is a coincident.

Should I give a bottle of FF before bed and hope for the some sleep or does anyone have any other great ideas? Thanks

Aspiemum2 Sun 24-Mar-13 09:12:29

My dts is 10 months, weaned and on formula and doesn't sleep through the night. Started to and then stopped when teething.
Could it be teething?

Aspiemum2 Sun 24-Mar-13 09:13:13

*sorry not calling your dd an it i meant the problem!

NotSoNervous Sun 24-Mar-13 09:16:22

Thank you aspie. She has been teething a few weeks ago but that all seems to have settled down now so I'm not to sure

noblegiraffe Sun 24-Mar-13 09:17:27

If she's not having a good feed when she wakes then she is probably not waking because she's hungry, but because she wants comfort. In which case formula might not help at all - my DS was a crap sleeper and woke up every few hours or so even when he wasn't feeding at all in the night any more.
But you can get more sleep if you get your DP to give the formula feed while you sleep.

ghosteditor Sun 24-Mar-13 09:18:28

I feel your pain - and I won't tell you how long it took for my DD to sleep through!

Try reading Wonder Weeks for reasons why children have sleep regressions - I seem to remember something around the time you're describing.

As for formula, I doubt it's the answer. If you want a delaying tactic for your DH, why not suggest waiting to see if weaning her on to some food helps when she's 6 months plus?

Good luck - you will survive it; I know it doesn't seem like it at the time, but you will smile

its sounds like she is comfort sucking to get back to sleep i.e. isnt actually hungry but is using the boob to resettle herself. I dont think formula would make a lot of difference as she would still want to suck to settle and may still wake when she reaches the light sleep stage in her sleep cycle. Would she take a dummy? Or you could try sometimes settling her without feeding, would you dh be up for helping with that?

NotSoNervous Sun 24-Mar-13 09:19:53

That's another thought I had giraffe that DP could do a feed. I have ebm quite often but it's hard to express enough for 1 feed and can take a good or two to get enough milk

FrillyMilly Sun 24-Mar-13 09:20:01

I think some babies are good sleepers and some are not regardless of method of feeding. I have a friend who formula fed and her son did not sleep through until 18 months. My breastfed DS didn't sleep through until 7 months and even now isn't a great sleeper. My dd was always a good sleeper and slept through from about 3 months.

Sorry not much optimism in my post. They will sleep eventually.

NotSoNervous Sun 24-Mar-13 09:24:26

Ghost I have thought that when she has food she might begin to sleep better but then I think that's a month away!! confused

Power she has recently started taking a dummy but only for20 min or so then she's had enough. I probably should try to settle her without letting her just suck but at 4am when were on the 3rd or 4th feed of the night I'm just desperate for more sleep

Hi. Sorry you're not getting any sleep hmm. Look here from Kellymom which talks about FFing at night. Apparently it doesn't make much difference there's been a recent study but I can't find it.
Is she actually feeding at night or just seeking comfort? My DD kept waking and I realised she was chatting and I'd been mistaking it for hunger she still loves chatting at 3 in the morning dammit
If u wanted to try pumping and feeding LO breast milk at night from a bottle, at least you'd know how much she was taking.
Sorry not much helpful advice grin

DewDr0p Sun 24-Mar-13 09:26:08

What does she do when she wakes OP? If she's only doing a couple of sucks and then falling asleep then she's not hungry imho. I can't see how formula would help really?

How quickly do you go when she cries? You could try leaving her for a couple of mins and see if she settles. Or try a dummy? Or send dh in to pat and shush til she settles?

JiltedJohnsJulie Sun 24-Mar-13 09:28:44

There no evidence that giving formula gets you more sleep, have a read of this and maybe get your DH to read it too. In fact the evidence suggests that by 7 months bfing mothers are getting more sleep than their ffing peers.

If your DH is concerned, does he try to settle her? Do you get a lie in?

If you are wanting to try to change her sleep have a look at the isis sleep website. It's a good place to start when you want to make changes. Have you read 31 ways to get your baby to sleep, 12 alternatives for the all night nurser or Sound Sleep by Sarah Woodhouse?

As for today. Try to get a nap and try to feed dd more often, say at least every 2 hours and from each side at least once each feed. Do you do breast compressions too?

It doesn't sound like she is waking from hunger, well she maybe but then just snacking, but if DH thinks taming her up will work this nay be a better way of doing it. Could DH try her with a bottle of ebm too?

noblegiraffe Sun 24-Mar-13 09:33:30

I think you need to rope your DP in to help, either by him giving a feed or by him doing some of the resettling in the night. Sleep deprivation is horrible and it's not fair that he is getting a full night's sleep while you slowly go out of your mind - even if he is working, your health matters too.
Sorry to say that starting solids made no difference to sleep with my DS.

JiltedJohnsJulie Sun 24-Mar-13 09:35:09

X posted with just about everyone there sorry. If its taking 2 goes to get enough for a whole feed, how about just doing it as a top up, so you'll need less? Don't think you actually have to sterilise your pump between all pumping s either so if you want to express at 7am and 9am, you should be fine without sterilising. I'm no expert on pumping though. Perhaps someone else could talk you through this?

JiltedJohnsJulie Sun 24-Mar-13 09:36:15

Do you leak while feeding too OP? If you do could you collect the milk in breast shells?

BertieBotts Germany Sun 24-Mar-13 09:45:27

It sounds like a sleep regression to me - it probably won't go back to 5 hours in one jump but the time between wakings will very slowly stretch out like it was doing to begin with. That was my experience anyway.

NotSoNervous Sun 24-Mar-13 10:02:36

Dew when she wakes sometimes its just slight grumbles but I always leave her until I know she won't self settle and is quite awake, again hoping she feeds well.

I was thinking of giving her one bottle of formula before bed but not during the night.

Tanks for the links jilted ill have a look. She feeds every two hours in the day anyway and I always alternate boobs. No I. Don't leak when feeding either

JiltedJohnsJulie Sun 24-Mar-13 21:34:42

It does sound pretty normal but maybe try the breast compressions?

MajaBiene Sun 24-Mar-13 21:38:00

Sounds more like a sleep issue than a feeding issue. Do you feed her to sleep?

Personally I would try something like not feeding to sleep at bedtime, sticking to 4 hourly feeds in the night (one as you go to bed so you don't have to gt up twice) and doing pick-up/put-down for wake-ups in between.

BloomingB Mon 25-Mar-13 09:55:26

One bottle before bed worked for us but like everyone says research says it makes no difference. It may have just been a coincidence that she slept through or for longer periods, who knows...For your own piece of mind why not just try it? If it doesn't work, no great loss, and if it does bonus and your dp can do this bottle while you relax!

NotSoNervous Mon 25-Mar-13 11:56:11

Last night I gave it a try and she too 4oz of formula and then had a comfort suck on the breast and still only went 2 hours hmm so that failed.

She wakes up crying so I can't not feed her hmm

MajaBiene Mon 25-Mar-13 12:02:53

You don't have to feed her everytime she cries. Sounds like it is about comfort sucking rather than hunger, so it is really up to you how you want to tackle her sleep.

NotSoNervous Mon 25-Mar-13 12:14:47

Yeh I suppose your right. It's just so hard when I get up and feel like a zombie to not feed her because I know she'll go to sleep and I can get back into bed quicker hmm

JiltedJohnsJulie Mon 25-Mar-13 12:29:21

I always thought like that too and it did get better. Have you read 31 ways to get your baby to sleep?

NotSoNervous Mon 25-Mar-13 12:40:09

I'm reading it now jilted. My DD only cat naps in the day and I'm lucky if she has 3 20min naps.

MajaBiene Mon 25-Mar-13 13:01:34

You need a run of days and a supportive partner to really get stuck into changing sleeping habits I think - I did similar at about the same age and DP dealt with night wakings in between feed times (I did 11pm and 3am in the night, still demand fed 2hrly-ish in the day) with cuddles and a dummy. It took a few nights but DS went from waking every 45 minutes to just waking for feeds really, and occasionally needing his dummy back in between.

I also stopped feeding to sleep though - if they are used to being fed to sleep at bed time you can't really expect them to get themselves to sleep without a boob in the night imo.

JiltedJohnsJulie Mon 25-Mar-13 13:24:03

I'm reading it now jilted. My DD only cat naps in the day and I'm lucky if she has 3 20min naps.. I think the key to all this is just that, she's overtired. Mine always, always slept much better if they had napped well.

See if your library has got the the No Cry Nap Solution.

NotSoNervous Mon 25-Mar-13 16:19:45

Ill check that in e library tomorrow jilted, thank you.

Maja DD only feeds to sleep at night, not during the day.

JiltedJohnsJulie Mon 25-Mar-13 16:22:34

Personally I don't think feeding to sleep was a big issue for us, both outgrew it without being forced.

MajaBiene Mon 25-Mar-13 16:26:55

Feeding to sleep became an issue for me when DS wouldn't go back to sleep without it! If he hadn't needed a boob every 45 minutes in the night then the bedtime feed wouldn't have been too much of a problem. Though funnily enough I continued feeding to sleep for naps for ages and that was fine.

How does she get to sleep at bedtime?

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