Help! 3 week old won't sleep at night unless being held...!

(27 Posts)
Tigerstar123 Fri 11-Mar-16 03:37:23

Hi all, any help re this would be great...
My son is 3 weeks old. When he was born he spent a few days in neo natal and then some further time with me on the ward on a billibed. However, we came home after a week.
First week at home, fine. Son sleeps in Chicco lullago downstairs and no issues. Upstairs, we have a Chicco next to me, and again, first week at home fine.
However, in this last week, he will not sleep in his crib at night. He will grizzle and cry until he's picked up and held and within 5 mins, he's asleep. Temp in room OK; little man fed and changed, so no comfort issues.
Mentioned to hv who suggested infacol to assist with wind (in case that is upsetting him); and placing his crib at an angle in case he's got reflux.
Nothing seems to have worked!!
Any ideas?? Not sure why only seems to be a new thing this week and can't work out why! He still naps in his downstairs crib in day, so it just appears to be a night thing.

Thanking you from a very sleep deprived mummy! Xx

Sootica Fri 11-Mar-16 03:44:08

Ahh he's just tiny and wants to be close to you it's normal xxx it won't last long and I have fond memories of that time with tinies
I used to sleep propped up in bed with several firm cushions under each arm so I couldn't possibly drop the baby anywhere and let them sleep on my chest.

Tigerstar123 Fri 11-Mar-16 03:57:29

Thank you for your response!
We're just snuggled now together after a feed.
I let him sleep on my chest, but I don't sleep as conscious of him. I may try the pillow idea though. Thanks again! Xx

zenB Fri 11-Mar-16 03:57:39

Hi, I've never posted here before and I don't think I have anything particularly helpful to say but I'm awake feeding my 2 month old and feel like I can relate. My son never had any issues in hospital though we were there for two nights as we tried to establish breast feeding. I remember we were feeling rather smug as our baby was the only one on the ward who nearly never cried. Then the night we took him home all hell broke loose! The child would not sleep. Not even in either of our arms. We tried to take caring for him in shifts but even so were so sleep deprived we started hallucinating (I walked from the bedroom to the living room thinking I was holding the baby). I was so scared I didn't want to be left alone with him. Anyway, this not sleeping at all eventually progressed to only sleeping whilst being held - I bought a wrap to wear him during the day which was a lifesaver. But this only sleeping whilst being held went on for weeks. Even when he was soothed into a deep sleep he would cry 5 mins after putting him down. We started to suspect he had reflux (for various reasons) but all the home remedies, raising crib etc. Didn't seem to help. At around 6 weeks we were finally prescribed infant gaviscon and our lives changed! The day he started using it he was like a different baby. By no means cured but every day he seems to be getting on better and better and just slept from 10pm to 3am in his side sleeper!

I feel I'm writing a lot though I'm not sure if it I'll make you feel any better. For the weeks of zero sleep everyone always told me that it will get better which at the time doesn't help. And actually passed me off. But it's true! Even though I still only get a couple or few hours sleep at a time I can see the light at the end of the tunnel!

Haha, OTT first post.

ODog Fri 11-Mar-16 07:05:15

Very normal. He's come out of the immediate sleeping stage and his instinct (survival in cave man times) is to be close to you. My DS settled a lot better when we safely bed-shared (a cosleeper would have been too far away). Get a sling for the day. Read up on the fourth trimester. It's tough, but it's normally and it slowly and gradually gets easier.

Tigerstar123 Fri 11-Mar-16 12:20:44

ZenB I'm with you on the smugness... We were similar on the ward and I kept thinking, oh we've got a good baby. I'm not feeling so smug now!! I'm sure it will pass, but when it's 4am and feel like you've just ran a marathon twice over it's hard to feel like that!
Odog the 4th trimester?? Why does no one tell you these things??! Ante Natal have a lot to answer for on the things they didn't tell... Lol!
Xx

Bishybishybarnabee Fri 11-Mar-16 12:22:20

I did like sootica and let him sleep on my chest with a selection of pillows propping us. I only ever dozed rather than full slept but it was manageable. DP then took him for a few hours in the morning so I could get some proper sleep.

Timetogrowup2016 Fri 11-Mar-16 13:13:26

Hi my daughter is 3 weeks old to. She was born at 35 weeks and spent 2 days in sbcu and then a couple days under the bili lights for jaundice to.
The only way she will sleep in her moses basket is to wrap a blanket around her body and then another thin blanket tucked in around her. Otherwise her startle reflex Wakes her and she can't settle as she just jerks about all over the place

Diddlydokey Fri 11-Mar-16 13:16:53

It could well be the startle reflex. Try one of these www.amazon.co.uk/Comfort-Harmony-Original-Swaddle-Raindrops/dp/B00KZBXSCG

Lots of babies don't seem to like the swaddle when it is first on but they do sleep a lot better with one.

talulahbeige Fri 11-Mar-16 15:17:07

I'm with a lot of people here, I had the same and slept propped up on pillows with my lo on me, I didn't get much sleep but she did. It didn't last long either. I hated it at the time and I never thought I would say this, I look back fondly on it now.
Remember everything passes and most of us feel your pain

Newtobecomingamum Fri 11-Mar-16 19:35:47

Google Sleepyhead! It's amazing and my little one loves it! It fits perfectly into a chicco as I have one. It feels like arms wrapped round them why they sleep so they feel all secure! Sorry if someone has already suggested, I haven't read all responses. Good luck x

lilac3033 Fri 11-Mar-16 21:43:25

I totally second the Sleepyhead. DD wouldn't sleep anywhere but on DP or myself. Refused to be swaddled too. Sleepyhead saved us! We just used it in the bed to start which was great, as I felt safer sleeping that way. A week or two later I moved her to the crib. I honestly cannot recommend it enough!

lemon101 Sat 12-Mar-16 11:42:10

I third the sleepyhead - godsend!
I would also suggest full co-sleeping in bed with your lo. Put blankets over him/her, tucking them in between mattress and side of bed and tuck the other end of the blankets under you. Make sure no pillows etc around and try to sleep with him next to you ( I did this for the first month and baby was on his side cuddled into my boobs). It worked for me.

If still no luck then swaddling is also really good - it's the only way to get my son to nap during the day if not in a buggy/sling.

Good luck!

chumbler Sat 12-Mar-16 17:02:59

Google safe co sleeping and like pp move pillows away (so not sure propping up on pillows is the safest idea however well intentioned. Although of course I did this too but do try to follow best practise!)

Q about the sleepyhead, sorry to hijack! But can you bf with baby in the sleepyhead so that you can put baby down easily?! If not maybe use a snugglebundl to lower baby down until baby's big enough for a grobag

Hope you get some sleep soon! It's completely normal and won't be forever smile

Fisherwoman14 Sat 12-Mar-16 22:42:42

My midwife showed me how to co-sleep properly. I also had a crib that attached to the side of the bed that worked wonders eventually - I would put DD in the crib and lie my head in it too so I was breathing on her so she could feel my breath on her head (I was lying in my bed and the crib was exactly the same height as our mattress). Or else I did what Sootica said and pillowed myself up so she couldn't go anywhere.
Essentially baby wants nothing else than mummy - you are baby's world. Enjoy those newborn snuggles as it goes so quickly. Ignore any suggestions of "making a rod for your back" - keep cuddling your baby (I did and my DD sleeps brilliantly now, in her own bed in her own room). Whilst he sleeps during the day in his crib you should nap on the sofa if you can. It will improve quickly - I can't remember the sleepless nights at all now. smile

Tigerstar123 Sun 13-Mar-16 01:00:21

Thanks again everyone for your responses. We're still up! Last night I co slept with DS and he slept but back to square 1 with the crib. Going to google sleepy head! Xxx

Alisvolatpropiis Sun 13-Mar-16 01:02:43

Totally normal! I know it's so hard in the moment but this sort of thing really is so very fleeting.

My daughter is only just 9 months and I can't remember the last time she slept on me sad

Pinkheart5915 Sun 13-Mar-16 01:11:02

We had the Chicco next to me cot for ds which attached to the bed. He slept fairly well like this. Now at 6 months sleep in his own room alone with no problems.
At 3 weeks old probably just want to be near mummy, it's completely normal and it does get easier I promise

Pinkheart5915 Sun 13-Mar-16 01:12:03

When your baby is napping during the day try and get a nap yourself then if you can

kiki22 Sun 13-Mar-16 08:04:34

I would go for the sleepy head too. I know there are always people on mn who say its normal and to enjoy it which is completely right but I just wanted to say I couldn't cope with ds constantly being attached to me and no way could I sleep with him on me if you feel like you need to put your baby down to sleep that's fine too.

didireallysaythat Sun 13-Mar-16 08:12:11

It's a phase. It will replaced by another one...smile

Alexa444 Mon 14-Mar-16 11:05:33

My little cousin had such bad wind that he would only sleep completely upright. My cousin (his mum) had to put him in a snowsuit and let him sleep in a jumperoo type thing. You know those walker type things that they sit in and bounce? Yeah he slept in that for about 2 weeks as she is an active sleeper and was terrified that she would crush him if she slept holding him. Grew out of it though.

Tigerstar123 Mon 14-Mar-16 12:42:21

Ahh, thanks everyone. Glad to know I'm not alone with this! As one poster stated, I'm sure this phase will soon pass and become something else I'll be posting about grin ! Xxx

Dixiechick17 Mon 14-Mar-16 15:03:12

I remember this so well, we used to lay my DD on a bed next to my legs and she'd fall asleep as she was next to us, then gently transfer her to her crib and keep our hands on her tummy for a few mins after transfer. In th end we bought a sleepyhead which made the transfer easier. It is hopefully just a phase though smile

minipie Mon 14-Mar-16 20:48:21

My eldest was like this (6 weeks prem). Slept all the time in hospital, and for the first few nights back, then after she hit her due date she "woke up" and I had to sleep propped up with her on my chest for 3+ months

With my second (3 weeks early) I used a Sleepyhead. Wow. She slept in it beautifully - 3-4 hour stretches from the start and fairly easy to resettle after a feed. You can get them secondhand for about half price.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now