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Please help!(23 Posts)
My 11 week old daughter hates sleep.
She'll nap in the day but I have to put her in her pram and push it up and down the living room, sometimes for hours. I know she is tired, and if I stop she screams, but she really fights sleep. Lately when she does drift off she's only stayed asleep for 45 minutes.
We have a bedtime routine, Bath, massage, cuddle then feed, which we do at the same time each night. She's in a moses basket with a raised head, we've tried swaddling, a hot water blanket, my shirt over the mattress and white noise. She was on gaviscon which helped for a little while. I don't think it's reflux anymore as the gaviscon didn't work the last time we tried it and she's not waking up screaming anymore, she's just waking up constantly. Coilef, dentinox and infacol did nothing.
I don't think I have unrealistic expectations, I don't expect her to sleep through, I'd be very happy if she woke 2-3 times a night. It's 3am and she's just woken up for the 5th time. My husband takes her for a few hours each morning but he works long hours so can't do anymore, plus she's ebf and has recently started refusing bottles of ebm. We have no family nearby. I can't sleep when she does during the day as it takes me a little while to get to sleep, by the time I drop off she's awake again and I end up feeling more tired. She's too young for CC or similar, but I'd do almost anything else for for 3 hours uninterrupted sleep!
Any tips or tricks would be very much appreciated, I honestly think I'm close to a breakdown. I'm not sure how much longer I can handle this, but I can't see any other option.
Sounds exhausting! Have you thought about asking your hv for some advice? My five week old fights sleep sometimes and seems to use the boob to settle to sleep. I've been thinking of using a dummy to settle heron babad nights. Is ththat something you could try of you haven't already?
She won't take a dummy, I've tried dipping it in ebm, holding it in by hugging her (lightly) to my chest, everything I can think of! But she just spits it straight out and makes the cutest little disgusted face! The health visitor suggested some of the things we've already tried, I'll pop into the clinic next monday and see if she has any other ideas.
You might want to try moving her into her cot. I posted on here last week with the same problem , I was at the end of my tether. Some wise lady suggested it - to be honest I was so desperate I would have tried anything!
It worked, sleep is definitely better ( not perfect ) but an improvement. If she is thrashing around a lot it might mean she is no longer comfortable in her basket.
My mother in law also suggested doing the bath in the morning instead so that there is less mucking about of a night - it worked - as much as I hate to admit it lol
The only thing my 8 week old will nap in during the day is a vibrating bouncy chair. Probably get told off by the HV but I can get a 3 hour stretch at a time out of that and catch up on Made In Chelsea whoops I mean the housework :-)
Bizarrely my ds loves to nap with a muslin draped over his head like a shepherd in a nativity play ha ha , I think he's a little eccentric.
Good luck OP, I know how lack of sleep can get you down. Please let us know how you get on.
We're picking up her cot next week so hopefully that'll help!
She used to nap in the bouncy chair, but only if it was being constantly bounced, the vibrating one wasn't good enough!
She enjoys the bath, it calms her down a bit. We just had a quick wash on Saturday and it didn't seem to make a difference.
DH finished work early today so I've had a little nap, am feeling a little more human!
I don't think the moses basket is the problem. She slept for 3 hours and then 2 the last few nights, but tonight she's waking up every 20 minutes to half an hour dispute having done everything the same. There is literally nothing wrong. She's had gaviscon (just in case), her cold is gone and her nose is clear. She can't tell she's in the moses basket as she lies completely still, but just randomly wakes up! I've tried 2 different kinds of white noise, and silence.
I am exhausted, I have a bad cold, I can't breathe through my nose so my throat is really painful and my teeth have decided to be sensitive. My back has been killing me all day and I'm having to pick her up then sit up to feed her for half an hour out of every hour (she's hardly feeding though, just comfort sucking so I don't think it's due to a growth spurt). I would sacrifice a limb for 4 hours of uninterrupted sleep. Please help!
Watching with interest as my 7 MONTH old still does this...
Oh no, I don't think I can handle another week of this, let alone 4 months! If it wasn't for DH taking her in the morning for two hours I would have had no sleep last night, and half an hour the night before :/
All I can suggest is lying down while feeding baby and cosleeping. Gets me through the worst...
Are you sure it's not reflux still? My DS suffers with redlux and before he was diagnosed he would wake up constantly through the night and would be coughing as if he was trying to clear his throat. If it is reflux then she might need something more than gaviscon if you feel that is no longer working. Have you tried laying her on her tummy for a nap in the day when you can keep an eye on her? I did that when my DS was about 3 weeks old just to see if it made a difference and he had a 3 hour nap. Obviously it is against SIDS advice but i didn't know what was wrong with him as a first time mum who'd never heard of reflux and my
Mum suggested i put him on his tummy just for a daytime nap to see if it made a difference!
I hope things calm down for you soon - i know how bad the sleep deprivation is and you feel so lonely in the middle of the night. Maybe take her back to GP and talk through symptoms? Or ring HV?x
I'm pretty sure it's not reflux, she's not in pain and she has random good nights where she sleeps for 2-3 hours at once. Plus I put her down on her back during the day in her pram. As long as I stay close and rock the pram everytime she stirs, she'll often nap for 2 hours. If she still had reflux she'd probably have it all the time, wouldn't she?
I'm going to speak to the hv at the drop in centre after easter, hopefully she'll help
Phone! I remember my HV saying reflux is worse at certain times of day/night than others. I don't think they would necessarily always have it but worth checking with HV!x
I will see what my HV says, tonight she is sleeping fine lying down in my arms, but she won't be put down! Staying with my MIL and the bed isn't really safe for co-sleeping so I'll be asked for a while
Bumping as I'm awake and in tears. It's definitely not the moses basket as we're at MIL using a cot. Pretty sure it's not reflux as she woke up quite happily, lay for about 15 minutes talking to herself before starting to cry because she is tired! Woke up after 30 minutes, managed to get her back down, only got her to wake up an hour and a half later.
I just don't know what I'm doing wrong, I feel like such a crap mum.
Firstly, you are most definitely NOT a crap mum! Please don't think that. Babies don't all behave in the same way and they don't follow what they are "supposed" to do. You are doing a fantastic job, and although it doesn't seem like it now, there will be a point in time where you will have got past this.
Secondly, is your DH there? If so, then once you've fed her, can you get him to take her for as long he can before she needs another feed? You might be able to get a 2 or 3 hrs stretch.
Again, in the day time, once you've fed her, can you DH or MIL take her for as long as poss so you can get some more sleep? Perhaps they could try again with a bottle of ebm, as she may take it (babies being contrary!) this time?
As a more long term idea, could you get a sidecar co-sleeper cot that attaches to the side of your bed? It makes co sleeping safer as the baby is in it's own space. You still have to be careful with your duvet or similar, but it is easier than the baby being in the main bed. I found it really helpful as it made feeds quicker and less interruption. If you can work out how to feed lying down it can help, as you feel at least you are a bit more rested than getting up and out of bed.
Thank you, but I must be doing something wrong as she needs so much more sleep than she's getting.
DH is out at the minute, it's only about the 2nd time he's gone out since she's been born so can't really complain! Going to give her to MIL at 7am so I can get a few hours.
We can't really afford another cot right now, besides which she won't feed lying down, she lets go every 5 mins or so and can't latch herself back on so I end up not getting any more sleep! She sleeps on my chest, latched on only. Sometimes once she's deeply asleep I can move her, but she won't go to sleep any other way at night.
You're not doing anything "wrong" at all. The thing I've learnt (from my vast experience of having one ds!) is that there isn't something that you're doing wrong that could be done right. Things just are how they are, and you have to do what you can to cope and get through. There might be things that can make incremental changes or that help you cope.
Fwiw, my ds would not sleep unless held for the first few months. All naps were on me during the day (meaning I couldn't catch up on sleep). He would feed to sleep at night and then take an age before I could risk transferring him to his cot. If he woke on transfer then the whole process would have to start again. There were some nights where I got no sleep at all, and I thought 3 hours straight was a luxury.
A few things that helped were using sleeping bags (helped him stay warm and cosy after a feed and reduce the risk of waking on transfer), using a Sleepyhead bednest in his cot, white noise constantly, and my DH giving me as much respite as he could manage around work. I used to phone him asking if he'd be home soon to take over just so that I could know that in x minutes I would be able to have a rest.
Oh, just remembered, there is something called the Pantley pull off technique which you could try. It gently encourages them not to fall asleep whilst latched on, so transferring to a cot is easier.
So, just more solidarity from me really. It sucks, and you can see why sleep deprivation is classed as torture. But it will get better. My dreadful sleeper is now a 21 month old who has slept through (7 till 7) from about 11 months. His sleep improved dramatically from 6 months to 10 months, having slowly improved from 3 to 6 months. Hang on in there, .
Do you take her outside? My daughter has always slept better when she gets regular fresh air and daylight. We have a dog so she was out everyday from about a month old. We would notice a difference if she didn't go out.
We have a sleeping bag and white noise app. I take her out everyday, usually in the pram for lots of fresh air. I don't think DH can help out much more, I may be able to get an extra hour once or twice a week but not much. I honestly don't think I can keep going like this
It's really rough isn't it. I do remember what it's like, you have my complete sympathies.
Did you have a look at the Pantley pull off idea? Might be worth a try.
Is there any chance that your DH could take the odd day (or afternoon) of annual leave? Even occasional extra support can make a difference when you're so sleep deprived. Or if not your DH, then any friends that could come over for the day and help out?
I've just looked up the Pantley method, it looks really interesting. DH has got the week off so we'll try it this week. She took a bottle this morning! First time in weeks, hopefully it'll continue so DH will be able to take her for longer and I can get a decent amount of sleep feeling much more hopeful today.
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