2.5 weeks - nighttime sleep

(18 Posts)
elliej83 Thu 10-Nov-16 21:45:04

My 2.5 week old sleeps brilliantly in the day he's really easy to get off to sleep however it's a different story at night time.
He's just completely awake and hates being put down. My husband works nights so he isn't around and I've fallen asleep holding him two nights running which I'm really concerned about but I just don't know what to do to settle him so he sleeps in his Moses basket. I've tried him with a dummy but it falls out every 5 mins so he cries for it back. Any tips gravely appreciated

Emberfirefly Thu 10-Nov-16 21:50:10

Newborn babies are nocturnal, they don't sleep through the night! They really are - this is still very early days. Not helpful I know when you are on your own with him at night - it's a shame your Dh had to go back into nights so soon after the birth. Would you consider co sleeping safely? He might settle better is he is close to you. I do feel for you as it's very early to be coping with nights all on your own. Is there anyway your dh can look after the baby for a few hours on the day before or after work so you get a good stretch of sleep? I found a three or four hour stretch was enough to keep me sane. You could express some milk for him to give in a bottle?

elliej83 Thu 10-Nov-16 21:59:17

We have a cosleeper Chico next to me as I also had a c section so I was struggling to get him in and out of the Moses basket at night. He hates the co sleeper which I'm not surprised about. The mattress is hard and he's a tiny little thing so I can see why he goes down in the Moses basket slightly better.
DH is being brilliant at letting me get some sleep in the day and I manage until about 5am but come then I'm falling asleep on him. DH gets back at 7am. It's his first week back this week and works alternate shifts so won't be every week but at least every other. The other shift is no more forgiving as he starts at 5am so he will need some sleep himself before then sad

LittleTalks Thu 10-Nov-16 22:08:01

Have you seen the Sleepyhead? I'm not saying it's a miracle and it's a ridiculous amount of money for a pillow... but I think they feel more secure than in the big Next To Me (which it fits in perfectly). Plus very handy for safe sleeps in other places. If you can afford it, it might be worth a go.

Emberfirefly Thu 10-Nov-16 22:14:24

I had a Chico next to me for ds3 and found it wasn't really much good until he was about 8 weeks old. Moses basket is fine if he will settle in it, you can leave him in that quite safely for a few weeks yet. Bless you it is so hard isn't it when you are utterly sleep deprived. What time does your dh start work? It might work if you can have a two or three hour stretch when he gets in and then an hour or so before he goes again, sounds really tough for both of you working round that shift pattern, you have all my sympathy! I know it's done to death in here but could you have a couple of hours in the day when he is asleep in his Moses basket?

Emberfirefly Thu 10-Nov-16 22:16:02

In other words I think you and your dh will likely have to work around the baby rather than trying to establish a nighttime sleep routine at this young age.

FATEdestiny Thu 10-Nov-16 22:20:38

What are we talking by "completely awake" during the night?

I disagree that newborn babies are nocturnal in fact there is no difference at all between night and day for a newly born baby. Like when I'm the womb, a "fourth trimester" baby will spend short periods of time awake throughout 24h a day. But mostly baby will sleep most of the time.

In this fourth trimester phase, sleep is passive. So as long as all needs are met, baby will sleep. It could literally be a case of only 20-30 minutes of awake time between one nap and the next - 24 hours a day. And this awake time may be entirely be taken up by a feed, nappy check, quick cuddle, back to sleep. Wake and repeat. Wake and repeat. Wake and repeat.

So mainly baby's sleep is disturbed due to:

Hunger - feed very frequently. I'd go for every wake up, even if it's every 60-90 minutes thro the day.

Comfort - this could be a dirty nappy, too hot/cold, wanting closeness, wanting to comfort suck, not in pain.

Are you breast or bottle feeding?

elliej83 Thu 10-Nov-16 23:31:32

I was ill after the c section so we didn't establish breast feeding and are bottle feeding. I've found that quite difficult to come to terms with.

He seems to spend longer period awake at night than in the day. He goes back to sleep much easier in the day. I think it's almost too quiet for him at night.
Husband leaves for work at 6pm so I've been trying to sleep in the afternoon but it's not easy. Hopefully the more tired I get it will though. I think it probably is just a case of trying to get to sleep whenever he is asleep

HeCantBeSerious Thu 10-Nov-16 23:37:35

When you were pregnant did you never notice that they wriggled most when you were lying still (in bath or bed)? Babies in the womb sleep when you're moving and wake up when the rocking stops. They can also hear your heartbeat. Your baby wasn't born ready for the world - they were premature (all human babies are). So your baby wants to be held, rocked and to be able to hear your heartbeat.

Read up about the fourth trimester. Your baby wants what they had in the womb - being held constantly, rocked to sleep, food on demand etc.

HeCantBeSerious Thu 10-Nov-16 23:38:59

And yes, they hear noise constantly in utero so suddenly being quiet won't be soothing to them. You could try some white noise if it's hard for you to hold him for long.

HeCantBeSerious Thu 10-Nov-16 23:39:53

He's also slap bang in the middle of a growth spurt.

tootiredtothinkofaclevername Thu 10-Nov-16 23:46:23

Shove a sheepskin underneath the fitted sheet on the cosleeper mattress. Use a heat pad to warm up the bed then remove just before you pop him in. White noise and lots of it.

FATEdestiny Thu 10-Nov-16 23:46:54

Don't feel bad about how you feed your baby. A baby with a full tummy is a happy baby. It doesn't matter how that tummy is filled flowers

Could you try feeding more frequently through the daytime? Maybe ever 2 hours or so (or before, if baby seems hungry before). Then actively extend that happy/awake time around daytime feeds. Bottle feeding makes that much easier. For example:

- baby wakes
- warm bottle
- give full feed (always make more milk than baby will drink, so a full feed should leave some milk left in bottle)
- wind
- nappy check/change
- cuddle/play/awake time - 20 ish minutes
- reoffer bottle to see if baby will take any more
- settle to sleep
- Sleep
Wake up and repeat this cycle all day long.

At night time don't do the awake bit of tge cycle, aim to just wake-feed-settle-sleep-wake-feed-settke-sleep and so on, if possible.

oatybiscuits Thu 10-Nov-16 23:51:29

Hth! It's such a hard time especially if you haven't got your partner around to help, I always found 4am was the darkest hour!

elliej83 Fri 11-Nov-16 04:42:49

Thanks fatedestiny sounds silly but what do you do with baby in the awake time? With him being so little i tend to cuddle him and he goes back off to sleep. I'm not sure what I can do at this age while he's awake.
We've done well tonight for to 4am and not fallen asleep on him and managed some sleep myself grin

FATEdestiny Fri 11-Nov-16 08:16:45

At 2 or 3 weeks old baby may well just go back to sleep and have very little awake time. It's healthy and normal.

I would tend to give baby a little floor time. After the feed and wind, I would put on floor to check nappy and leave baby to stretch and play for a bit.

- Shake a few toys at them.
- Work on smiles and giggles (you'll get baby smiles soon) with lots of smiley eye contact.
- how about some nappy off time
- or a little gentle baby massage
- Maybe a little tummy time while baby is happy. But this might just be a few minutes worth.

As soon as baby seems no longer happy, starting to get grumpy, that's the end of awake time and it's time to start settling back to sleep.

BreatheDeep Fri 11-Nov-16 08:26:07

A midwife gave me the tip of having very quiet sound at night as it's often the silence they don't like. We started off by having radio 4 on in the bedroom very quietly. The chatting helped us all get to sleep. We changed to white noise after a week or so. Then invested in Ewan the Dream sheep which he still switches on himself now (3 years old).

Babies don't know what day and night is so you have to adjust them to it slowly

StressedAndYaKnow Fri 11-Nov-16 08:28:26

Does the little one get swaddled at night?? I was totally against swaddling before I had my first son. But we found swaddle pods and they are amazing. They are thin and we used to cover with blankets accordingly but he slept so much better. He needed the security so he didn't twitch himself awake. Obviously we didn't use it during the day but it was amazing at night. And by 8 weeks he was starting to sleep longer and longer, straight through the night.
A good night time routine works brilliant too, lights dimmed, to turned right down or off, warm bath (I used johnsons lavender bubble bath), massaged with coconut oil, dressed, bottle and put straight in the swaddle pod and down into the Moses basket. We first started doing the bedtime at 10 so that he was down by 11 and then eventually by 8 weeks we were doing it at and 7:30 and he was down by 8 and slept until anywhere from 6am-8am. It worked with both my sons. X

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