12 month old awake half the night

(5 Posts)
marshmallowpies Mon 25-Jan-16 10:54:28

DD2 is nearly 1 and sleep has been a nightmare since 5 months when she began teething. She began refusing to go back into her cot after the 11pm feed - still crying after an hour, often - so we started co-sleeping from whenever she wakes up till the morning, DH and I usually taking turns, and him bringing her to me if she needs feeding.

This worked ok while she would cosleep happily - and sometimes she will sleep through until 2, 3 or 4am in her own cot - but lately when she comes into our bed it is just a recipe for her being awake for hours, thrashing around, clawing at my face and pulling my hair, crying and screaming. She cries if I pick her up and cuddle her, she cries if I put her down next to me and shush her. Feeding calms her momentarily but she cries as soon as I put her down. This can go on for 2 or 3 hours at a time. Some nights are better than others but most nights are like this, and it's been going on for months. We give her Calpol or infant nurofen if we think it's teething related (when her cheeks are really red or she's rubbing her ears) and this gives a bit of respite as she will usually sleep for 3 or 4 hours unbroken after that.

I can get by on not enough sleep for a while, but my DH really struggles without sleep and I worry about his stress levels. And if I've done most of the night shifts during the week he lets me sleep in at weekends, lovely for me, but it eats into time we could spend all together as a family and means he doesn't get much downtime either after the working week. And not fair on DD1 (3) who has tired grumpy parents all the time.

I have wondered whether to try and enforce more daytime napping if the problem is over-tiredness, but she resisted the afternoon nap for quite a few months now, and when she does sometimes sleep in the afternoon (eg on a long car journey) it seems to make no difference to the nights.

Beginning to be at my wits end. She is close to being a toddler but at nights it's like I still have a newborn!

FATEdestiny Mon 25-Jan-16 13:38:02

What does she have as a sleep prop to help her feel comforted and secure enough to sleep. Does she have a dummy or a comfort toy? Anything like that? How does she go to sleep at bedtime and for daytime naps?

marshmallowpies Mon 25-Jan-16 14:52:51

Daytime sleeps have always been in the buggy since she was a few months old and started getting too big for the Moses basket. DD1 is picked up from preschool at 12 so I have to be able to be out and about mid-morning running errands and getting to preschool on time, so daytime naps in a cot are not a realistic option.

At bedtime in her cot we have a musical mobile which she likes, but when we co sleep we've tried white noise and soft classical music, used to work but no longer does! She hasn't adopted a favourite toy or comforter yet but perhaps I should put one in my bed so it starts to smell of me. Half the time she won't be comforted by me, though, she pushes me away and claws at me, so I struggle to feel that I can really comfort her at all. Pulling my hair seems to be the one thing that comforts her - she's tearing out great chunks of it. sad

marshmallowpies Mon 25-Jan-16 16:57:43

Well I have managed to get her asleep again this afternoon - lets see how we go with a second sleep. Perhaps it will make tonight easier.

marshmallowpies Tue 26-Jan-16 10:47:27

The extra afternoon sleep seemed to buy us a better first half of the night - she went from 8-12 without too much trouble, and after feeding I was able to settle her between 1-2pm and she slept until 3.50. (Although during the time she was soundly asleep I was woken by DD1, usually a good sleeper, who had a 'bad dream' - Sod's law!)

From 4am to some time before 6am it was back to the usual screaming, writhing, pushing me away and hair pulling routine. We then both got some sleep between 6 and 8.

Tonight I think I might just go to bed earlier - I'm a night owl, going to sleep before 10 is just not my usual habit, but I desperately need a few more hours!

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