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4 week old "sleep"-wh
I need help!
4 week old (and a bit) DS is beyond frustrating. I've accepted that he won't sleep during the day -at all (fights it with every bone in his body) but night time is pushing me to breaking point.
We're on 3 hourly feeds (formula fed) during the day and he takes very little for his age (2-3oz). He looks like he wants more (sticking tongue out etc) but refuses the bottle once it's in his mouth (head shaking/fake sucking). Means a very cranky baby during the day.
Then we get to night. We started a routine of bath, bottle, cuddle and in bed for 7 (closer to 8-830 after fighting sleep and being shoogled to within an inch of his life). DH lets him sleep til 10.30-11, final bottle (2-3oz) then bed. He'll sleep fairly well (albeit noisily) til 2ish, then absolutely guzzles 4oz. He'll then crash for another 2-3 hours, guzzle another 3-4oz and then fall asleep.
Or so he would have us believe.
He'll go into his Moses basket (heated with a lavender scented hot water bottle-I know, I know...) and be asleep but within 20 min, he's asleep but straining, whimpering, crying and wakes himself up. Then that's is-from 530 I'm up ALL day as "sleep when he sleeps" doesn't apply with this baby.
Funny thing is, a week ago he was grizzly during the 530-830 period but slept. Now, he just point blank refuses. Ended up taking him to bed with me where he crashed and I sat up worried if suffocate him
He has terrible trapped wind and feeds take ages (he loses interest as 15m to burp just makes him sleepy) but I make sure I've got all the burps out before he's down so he's not in pain. Mattress is elevated and we have a white noise machine which emulates the beating heart.
Any suggestions? I've got severe PND and I need support!
I didn't formula feed either of my DC, so not sure about the amounts and stuff, but tbh, it sounds pretty standard for a 4 week old.
A month ago he was still in your womb, so he's still getting used to 'day' and 'night'. Can take some time for kids to realise what they are and to sleep at the right time
Sounds like you're doing well with sleep aids - do you think they help him?
It could be wind. I remember both mine were terrible sleepers if they had trapped wind or were constipated. From your OP I reckon that's the cause.
Neither of mine slept for longer than an hour at a time for the first year of their lives. I was on my knees in a total state with exhaustion, so I understand the effect lack of sleep can have. It isn't easy at all!
Hoping someone with knowledge of formula comes along to offer advice soon.
In the meantime, check out the MN Breast and Bottle feeding section, might be good info there.
Ds is exactly the same age and identical to your post right down to the 2-3oz at a time feeds. Only difference is he sleeps in the day ok.
With his wind problem we find a dummy is excellent. The sucking on the dummy causes peristalsis and the air to move thru the gut. We plan to chuck them out at 12 weeks the same as with DS1 before he can get "attached" to them.
We only introduced the dummy a few days ago and it's made the world of difference. He normally sucks it for a bit and calms himself down/farts a lot, and then drops it out his mouth and sleeps.
Have you tried colief? It's expensive, but we found it really helped with the wind as did adding a bit of gripe water to the feed. My dd burped it out painlessly.
I'm sorry, I know this isn't what you want to hear, but this sounds pretty normal.
Don't get hung up on what worked last week. That was a quarter of his life ago. It may never work again.
Newborns are tough, but there's often a leap forward at 6 weeks, both for you and them.
If he's squirmy it could well be wind. Does it sound like he takes it in during the feed? A burp break every ounce may help. Some babies also like to be held upright for ages after a feed - do you have a sling or could you get to a sling library?
Congratulations. You're doing great.
Get all the help you can though, particularly if you have PND - is there anyone who can take baby out for a walk so you can have a nap?
My DD wouldn't sleep for more than 20mins in the day for the first 3 months and would moan and wail in pain a lot of the time she was awake, it is really tough. She is formula fed and it was wind that was affecting her sleeping, although she did sleep for 3 hours at a time at night. Wind basically doesn't get better until the baby's gut gets bigger, it just seems to be a matter of time, but that's no consolation when you are knackered and an emotional wreck, I know. Things that helped me from the wind perspective:
- get a sling for the daytime, windy babies love to sleep in them, I had a Babasling and wouldn't have managed without it
- I swapped to MAM bottles (from Tommee Tippee), some bottles and some teat shapes seem to create more wind for some babies than other types
- I tried Infacol but as the prev post said Colief is also supposed to be good. Not sure if the Infacol helped but at least you are trying something.
- use a dummy, I totally agree that this helps, it comforts the baby if nothing else, I would not have survived without one, when DD was uncomfortable the dummy seemed to help and my 8 mo now only uses it to get off to sleep
- check the milk isn't too bubbly when you are feeding it after having shaken it up, especially when you are feeding small amounts of milk the bubbles can enter the teat and obvs won't help the wind
All the info out there is on breast feeding, I felt as if I was the only one bottle feeding (I bottle fed as really struggled with breast, massively cracked nipples, another story!) and it is difficult to find support as it isn't encouraged, but all mums need support whatever choices they make!! You aren't alone, it will get better, chat to your HV about amounts of milk and weight gain, if the weight curve is looking ok don't worry too much about how much he's drinking at each feed, they are all different there's no hard and fast rules when they are that age even with bottle feeding.
Hope this helps :-)
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