How and when to night wean?

(17 Posts)
bunny85 Sun 17-Jul-16 22:19:30

Hi

My baby is 8 months old and he's a terrible sleeper. I keep reading that people night wean, but how exactly is it done and at what age? He's BF and is on solids now. We also co-sleep, and he usually wakes every 1.5-2h and needs a boob to go back to sleep. Usually it doesn't take too long for him to fall back asleep. We've never liked CIO or CC and have never done that. So when and how do I go about night weaning?

Tia

Mrscog Mon 18-Jul-16 07:06:03

I think after 6/7 months its cosleeping which leads to the poor sleep rather than hungry. Both of mine went straight from cosleeping at 6/7 months to their own rooms and instantly started only waking 1-2 times a night for a quick feed. I think there comes a point where they wake up just because you're there.

dinodiva Mon 18-Jul-16 11:21:32

Agree with PP about the cosleeping.
I decided to stop dropping BFs and moving to formula from about 8 months - starting with the bedtime feed, then the morning one. I'm currently just doing lunchtime and in the night, and DD is 10 months. I plan to drop lunchtime next week.

End of last week I decided to stop offering BF before midnight (she has been getting into a habit of waking every couple of hours and I know she doesn't need it). She generally wakes around 10.30pm and I'm am just offering water. It takes a while to settle her (she's a stubborn madam) but has only since woken once before morning for a BF, and last night didn't wake up again until 6am. This was the first night in 10 months I've not fed overnight. Time will tell if it was a one off or a permanent change!

A lot of my friends have been trying or have managed to night wean (generally FF babies) whereas my feeling is that when DD is ready she'll drop it. It's pretty normal for them to wake in the night for much longer than 8 or 10 months so just do what works for you. I can't face giving it up at night on my terms (she's a screamer when she doesn't get her own way) but I go back to work in September so I'm slowly dropping BF and am hoping she'll get there on her own. We will see...
Good luck!

bunny85 Tue 19-Jul-16 09:32:48

Thank you both! I'm not yet ready to move him out of my bed, mainly because it will quite possibly take at least several sleepless nights, crying etc which I just can't face at the moment. Is there a way of reducing night feeds while still co-sleeping?

mrsmugoo Tue 19-Jul-16 12:04:04

I don't think you can have your cake and eat it!

If they sleep independently and can self settle throughout the night then they won't look for a boob. If all they know is boob in gob every time they stir, then it's a self perpetuating thing.

I would personally just do the sleepless nights and nail it now rather than muddle through for what could be another couple of years! An 8 month old is way more amenable to change then a toddler.

Mrscog Tue 19-Jul-16 22:12:27

When I moved mine it was only one bad night and then they were fine. And even the bad night wasn't that bad in the scale of bad nights.

bunny85 Wed 20-Jul-16 08:39:28

Thank you, so how do I go about it, just put him in his cot and pick him up to rock/comfort when he wakes for a boob but don't give boob at all till morning or gradually reduce the number of times I give it? Sorry for the daft questions smile

havalina1 Wed 20-Jul-16 08:46:01

I disagree with the previous posters - I was an initially reluctant Cosleeper - the baby insisted and I was so exhausted he found his way into my bed. He's almost 10 months now and I now absolutely love it. Once he got a bit bigger and a bit more robust I found I slept better and didn't worry.... Anyway... He's still bf (no formula or pumped milk - he won't take a bottle) but he only wakes generally once a night now for a feed, which he has with us both lying down. My sleep is massively improved. I barely register the feed. We both go straight back to sleep and neither of us move much in the bed.

It's so hard to know what will work, it seems there's no magic answer! you could do a bit of trial and error and find your path.

twoundertwowillbefun Wed 20-Jul-16 08:57:11

If you do night wean then start slowly....offer the boob up until say midnight or so then nothing again until 6ish and then extend the times either side until you have what you want smile

During the other wake up times try not to pick him up but be present to shush or pay him as you see fit as half the time they want to get back to sleep quickly and picking them up will only elongate the process. Babies will cry/winge but remember that you are there beside them, they are safe and loved and they are learning a new skill - shutting the door and letting them cry it out is a completely different approach. I coslept with my DD until she was 18 months but she actually sleeps better in her own bed now. I night weaned her whilst co sleeping and just had my back turned to her so she couldn't reach the boob easily during the time I was weaning her smile

FifiFerusha Wed 20-Jul-16 09:51:38

I just went for it as my DS ate so much in the day. Every time he woke I soothed him back to sleep any other way than boob. Rocked, shhh patted, the lot. You could do this while co sleeping as two under's experience shows. Eventually my DS didn't wake for the boob. I guess if your does not take a bottle then this might be a better idea than giving water.Then once he is used to not being bf through the night start thinking about moving him into his own cot if you want to. It might be quite hard for him to go full on into his cot and night weaned at the same time. However, I do know that all I am saying is probably easier said than done.

It took about two or three weeks of settling back to sleep without a feed until he didn't wake( mind you the 4am waking lasted a while longer and now it has just changed into an EW bet 5 and 6) . Nearing the end though there were times i could pick him up and hug him for literally a minute and he would go back to sleep. . .and my boy was a tricky sleeper. Used to wake for about an hour in the night sometimes more.

Good luck x

Nottalotta Wed 20-Jul-16 16:52:29

Sorry to hijack - I'm thinking about this too. Ds starts in his cot then Co sleep and bf in bed after his first wake up, which is anything from 10pm to 2am but often at the earlier end. Last night though, 12.40. I fed him laying down, then put back in cot. If I want to night wean, I'd prefer to start between 11 -5 as he's often up at 5 anyway. But what if he sleeps beyond 11? Off er a dream feed?

Nottalotta Wed 20-Jul-16 16:53:15

He's nearly 1 BTW.

NotWithoutMyMerkin Wed 20-Jul-16 16:54:52

Look up the jay Gordon method of night weaning

Thequilltosurvive Wed 20-Jul-16 16:55:27

My DS just stopped refusing feeds in the night when he was 10 months. He still woke up until he was 14 months though. No advice as I think they just get it in their own time but for us he just needed a quick cuddle rather than food.

twoundertwowillbefun Wed 20-Jul-16 22:14:18

Nottalotta use the timings that suit you - if he sleeps past it then see it as a bonus but don't dream feed as he doesn't need to be fed at night as a one year old so you're really only just trying to break a ha it ana from a new way for them to soothe themselves back to sleep iyswim?

twoundertwowillbefun Wed 20-Jul-16 22:15:59

Nottalotta use the timings that suit you - if he sleeps past it then see it as a bonus but don't dream feed as he doesn't need to be fed at night as a one year old so you're really only just trying to break a ha it ana from a new way for them to soothe themselves back to sleep iyswim?

twoundertwowillbefun Wed 20-Jul-16 22:17:40

Nottalotta use the timings that suit you - if he sleeps past it then see it as a bonus but don't dream feed as he doesn't need to be fed at night as a one year old so you're really only just trying to break a ha it ana from a new way for them to soothe themselves back to sleep iyswim?

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