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5 month old overtired quickly, I don't know how to change it

(9 Posts)
pattysheps Mon 22-Jun-15 19:07:41

Hi,
Im a first time mum with a beautiful girl who is very healthy and curious. When she is awake she is very attentive and calm, can concentrate on one thing for a long time. The challenge is this, when there are a lot of people around who want her attention, she gets overtired really quickly.
I notice it especially in the weekend when daddy is home and we see friends/family or go to church (which is a big church).
I have always carried her in a sling, still do, in busy situations, but for the last month she is more active and wants to play on the floor, discover etc. But when people other then me or daddy engage with her or want to hold her, she only lasts for 5 minutes.
She has been in a rhythm of being awake for 1-1,5 hour and then sleep for an hour or 30 minutes for 2 months now. After a nap she is happy and easy for stimulation but at the end of the day she can get really overtired. I am very strict with her naps, as soon as I see her signal I put her down for a nap. Especially excited family and friends comment on this; let her fall asleep when she is ready by herself (yeah right) or ' ahhhh just keep her here with us for a bit longer' is what we hear a lot but I don't want to do it because when our girl isn't sleeping she is overtired and screaming and unable to settle to sleep.

- Anyone here experience with this? All tips are welcome and very much appreciated-

Many thanks!
Patty (mummy of Hannah-Eden)

MrsNextDoor Mon 22-Jun-15 22:15:01

So you're putting her for a nap every hour to hour and a half? That's really excessive frankly. It's more like a newborn's routine OP...a 5 month old baby should be having 3 naps of an hour or so per day.

If you're putting her down every hour or so I'm not surprised people are confused. What you see as "her signs" might be simply her getting a little overstimulated/tired but then that means it's just time for a change of scene.

Laquila Mon 22-Jun-15 22:18:13

I don't think we can categorically say how many naps a 5-month old should be having - all babies are different. At 5-months my baby was certainly having more daytime sleep than 3 naps of an hour or so, but

Laquila Mon 22-Jun-15 22:20:59

Oops sorry, posted too soon! ...I dot think that maybe your schedule is a bit excessive. What happens if you let her fall asleep by herself, myabe just for the first nap of the day? I don't think I was consciously putting my son down for naps at that age - I think I let him fall asleep when he wanted, within reason. I would rock/sling/push him or put him in his cot though if I thought it would help him.

Another thought - are you sure the grumpiness is over tiredness? Have you ruled out hunger/dietary intolerance/reflux/wind etc?

LittlePink Wed 24-Jun-15 19:19:54

My 5 month old can cope with 2 hrs awake. He's on 3 naps a day. The first nap of the day is 1.5-2 hrs after he's woken up in the morning. Can be 40 mins- 1hr then 2 hours after he will need to go down again and that will be 1-1.5 hrs then 2 hrs after he has a cat nap of 30 mins then bed 6.30pm. He doesn't sttn and never has, not once. Wakes frequently at any old random time but he's generally happy in the daytime so we're going with that! Although I'm half dead with sleep deprivation right now

PrawnJalfrazi Wed 24-Jun-15 19:36:13

At that age, we were roughly:

6/6.30am wake
7am Breakfast
8.30/9am - sleep 20-30 minutes
11.45am Lunch
12.15pm-2pm (roughly - never later than 2.30pm wake) sleep
4.30pm Tea
5pm - sleep 20-30 minutes (this sleep stopped around 6-7 months)
6pm Bath, milk, stories
6.45/7pm bed and lights out. Slept through - no waking.

Does your DD sleep through the night - it sounds like lots of daytime sleep? Though they do go through phases of needing more. She might just need extra sleep.

WorldsBiggestGrotbag Wed 24-Jun-15 19:42:57

At 5 months DD was up at 7, half an hour nap at 9.30, an hour and a half at 12.30 and half an hour at 4ish. Bed at 7. What you think it's overtiredness could be overstimulation? Maybe just some 'quiet time' rather than a sleep?

RoobyTuesday Wed 24-Jun-15 20:03:20

I don't really see how you can stop your dd from sleeping, if she needs to sleep she needs to sleep so I wouldn't fret too much. Trying to keep her awake will just cause more misery.
I've got a 6 month old ds. He sleeps from 7.30pm -6.30am with two quick feeds in that time going straight back to sleep. He then has a two hour nap in the morning and another two hour long naps at lunch time and at tea time. If he doesn't get his daytime sleeps he is actually very hard work, very whingy and irritable and it's harder to then get him to sleep later on.
Some babies really do just need more sleep than others. I've had three babies and my first needed very little day time sleep but ds2 and 3 have done a lot of sleeping!
It does sound like she needs those naps if you have ruled out hunger so I'd go with the flow as long as her day time naps are not affecting her night time sleep.

GaryWilmotsWedding Mon 29-Jun-15 15:30:59

I've got a 15 month old and she was much like yours. When she was awake she was very intensely into whatever it was she was doing, and then it would become very clear she needed to be put down for a snooze. She rarely nodded off on her own but would fall asleep straight away if I lay her down. She slept through from about 7 weeks and I thought the amount of sleep she was getting seemed excessive, but I knew the signs and went with it. I must confess this was often because it suited me that she was asleep when I had things to do!

I worried about it for quite a while but gradually her need for sleep has tailed off. She has been in nursery for 3 months and only has one 45 min nap in the day now. She does 'catch up' on sleep on the days she is home with us and sometimes will have 3 hours in the day still, despite sleeping 12 hours at night. Nursery tell me she is very happy all day and she is not on her knees when I pick her up, so I'm pleased she seems to be able to 'last' when she needs to and catch up when she has the chance. To be honest, I do think part of it is needing some alone time more than sleep sometimes, as she doesn't always make herself heard the instant she wakes up and is happy to roll around in her cot a bit and babble to herself, blow raspberries and look at her toes etc.

Overall I'd say don't worry and go with your baby's individual needs. I did ask the Doctor about it a couple of times and they just said every baby is different and to enjoy the free time I got!

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