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why is my 17mo doing this? Sleep related

(7 Posts)
alabasterangel Thu 08-Nov-12 14:35:30

Okay, I give up, I need help; exhausted!

DS's (unlike DD) has always been hard work during night hours; didn't achieve a sleep through until almost 12 month old amongst other things.

Of late, I thought we'd cracked it. Well, when I say cracked it he was going to bed at 7.30 and for the most part waking at 6.30am. Heaven to me after over a year of being up for at least an hour every night. I often hear him stir at about 3ish and frankly have found the best approach is to ignore. He has a comfort toy/light thing (seahorse) which he can now switch on himself which helps.

We had a spate of night wakings about three weeks ago, where he needed "more" than self settling. I'd hear him stirring and it would ramp up into more. I'd leave it a while before going in. We did actually adopt a "controlled crying" approach to get him to sleep through the night at 12 months, but this recent spate seemed to be very easily cured by a quick cuddle and reassurance; he would be back to sleep in about 10 minutes max and my sleep disturbance was 15 mins which was fine. It went on for a few days, then suddenly stopped and he went back to sleeping through; hurrah!

This week all hell has broken loose. somewhere between 2 and 3am he will wake and literally scream the house down. I've tried the controlled crying technique; Monday he was so wound up from it I thought he was going to be sick and I couldn't see him in that distress. Last couple of nights I've ended up with cuddles and so on again; except this time thats not enough; as soon as he's back in the cot drowsy and I leave, he revvs back up again. If I cuddle till fully asleep and put him back (which is not good practice, I know) then as soon as he stirs and realises I've gone, he goes nuts again. Last night he woke at 2.30am and I didn't get to go back to sleep myself till 5.15am!! I can't go on like that!!! Asleep at my desk today just about!

he has a good bedtime routine and always has, he has 1.5 hour daytime nap at the same time whether at nursery or home. He's not too cold, he has a stuffy nose at the moment but has plenty of those over the months and never normally a problem to that extent.

Anyone got any ideas? I feel like we're getting worse not better.

FeralGirlCambs Thu 08-Nov-12 17:34:25

We've had the same. Maybe teething? No real sense of why but I think (a week of good sleep now) we're out the other end after about a month that was pretty like what you describe - some 'quick' wakings that just needed a cuddle, but a few hellish nights, with no apparent reason; and always napping fine in the day. So no advice - just some reassurance on a statistical analysis of one that it might not go on forever. My DD is 17 mo tomorrow and always been a good sleeper.

MamaBear17 Thu 08-Nov-12 18:58:03

My dd is 15 months and is doing the same. I thought it was teething and have given her calpol alternated with nurofen but to be honest I cant say it has made much difference so havent given her any tonight (I worry about giving it too often). No advice, just sympathy and hope that someone else can explain it!

JiltedJohnsJulie Fri 09-Nov-12 09:48:00

I'm not a huge fan of CC as we did it by the book for our DS and it never worked and just caused everyone in the family a lot of stress.

I think the cause of your problem could be the 18 month sleep regression, have a read here. You will probably find 31 ways to get your baby to sleep and stay asleep helpful as well.

Just wanted to ask what you meant by this If I cuddle till fully asleep and put him back (which is not good practice, I know). He is a baby, he is in distress, why is it bad practice to cuddle him? Not having a go, I genuinely don't know.

Think you might also have a bit of Separation Anxiety going on too, which again is perfectly normal.

If he is keeping you awake at night and you are having trouble at work, will you all sleep better if you stick him in bed with you when he wakes? Could you try going to bed earlier yourself too?

mycatlikestwiglets Fri 09-Nov-12 11:05:50

I think there must be some sort of developmental thing at that age as DS went through it too - I used to describe it as night terrors although I'm not sure that is really what it is. I used to go in to shush him but it didn't always work as part of the problem was his distress at being awake when he was really tired. It does pass - DS is now 22mo and has been sleeping beautifully again for the last few months.

sanam2010 Fri 09-Nov-12 11:36:00

It's usually teething if you can exclude other illnesses - my DD only started sleeping through at 18 months but then recently at 2 years we had a few horrible weeks, she would wake up at 4.30 or 5am every day and impossible to go back to sleep for weeks. Then one day we saw three molars had come out all at once, she even had a little bruise on the outside of her cheek from the pressure. As soon as they had pierced through she slept through perfectly again (thank God!).

I think it doesn't hurt to cuddle them rather than letting them cry - you can usually sth is wrong be it thirst or stomach ache or afraid of darkness or teething etc..

Good luck!! Usually it should only last a couple of weeks!

Tickledyellow Fri 09-Nov-12 19:36:56

We are going through nearly exactly the same thing right now with my DS so I have bags of sympathy. It is exhausting and we are struggling with it. we used to be able to put our son down for cot naps and night time sleeps relatively easily but all that changed a few nights ago. Cue screaming and calling out for us for up to two hours... The only thing that works is pure exhaustion on his part. We keep going in, cuddling him until sleepy then leaving room. But sometimes I can't physically get him back into cot as he clings on. He is 18 months and quite strong now. Will read the links others have posted for advice but wanted you to know you are not alone. I know it is a phase but until it is over we have no life....or sleep! Big hugs

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