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Toddler screams at 3.45am for 1.5 hours

(11 Posts)
adjsavedmylife Thu 23-Mar-17 05:29:06

DS is 13 months. Each night he wakes crying at 3.45 for about 1.5 hours and I can't do anything to help him. Can't resettle in cot, he will take a feed but screams as soon as off boob, won't be cuddled, stroked, screams in our bed, screams if put back in cot, painkiller doesn't help, not hot/cold, change doesn't help. What am I missing? I feel awful for him and so frustrated. He'll eventually go back off out of sheer exhaustion for maybe an hour then up for the day around 6.

isthistoonosy Thu 23-Mar-17 05:36:24

Could it be night terrors? For mine shh shhing without waking him helped.
He looked awake but i finally worked out he wasn't really.

esiotrot2015 Thu 23-Mar-17 05:47:45

Sounds like night terrors to me too
Has he got a night light or can you put a mobile above his cot to distract him

adjsavedmylife Thu 23-Mar-17 05:52:10

I did consider it but I get the impression they are more dramatic? This start off crying then quickly builds to screaming - feels like frustration that he can't sleep but this morning was like a straining cry too. He's still going, it's been 2 hours sad

adjsavedmylife Thu 23-Mar-17 05:55:51

Will look into it in more detail. Now he has stopped crying and is awake for the day. Have put him in his cot for a ten minute sanity break and he is babbling happily. Wtaf?

adjsavedmylife Thu 23-Mar-17 05:56:23

Ps thank you! Sleep deprivation making me forget my manners blush

Beyondtheshore Thu 23-Mar-17 06:06:47

I think it would be unusual for night terrors to happen so late in the night (they usually take place quite early in the night when sleep is deepest) or to go on for so long.

How do you get him off to sleep in the evening and for naps, and is this the only time he wakes in the night? I'm wondering if it's a self-settling issue. Sleep at that time of night is at its lightest with frequent natural wakings - could it be that he is waking up (obviously still tired) and then getting frustrated because he can't get himself back off to sleep again? We had something similar with one of ours around that time of night (our solution was controlled crying - not just for that waking but for bedtime, nap time and any other waking as well - which I know isn't for everyone, but it worked for us. We figured he was crying plenty as it was, so we might as well let him figure out how to get back to sleep while he was at it!)

flowers - it's awful hearing your baby cry at any time, but at that time of night it really is the pits!

Anatidae Thu 23-Mar-17 06:12:56

We had this!

We found that if we woke him up properly it 'reset' him. So we'd get him up, walkround upstairs withthe light on just for five minutes and do something boring but consistent (we go look at the letters that spell his name on the door.) if we tried to keep him asleep he'd carry on being upset.

Worth a try anyway.

Also worth a try: is it the same time every night? If so, set alarm for twenty mins before and wake him up fully, then straight back to bed (check for wind too...) when you're up, listen carefully - is something happening at that time? Anything innocuous like noise in the pipes or a train going by?

Night terrors do usually happen either at the start if end of sleep but not exclusively. Again, note the time , wake them fully then straight back to bed twenty mins before. It seems to reset ours.

He's still a crap sleeper and wakes 10x a night at 18mo (and is up for the day at 4, god help us)

adjsavedmylife Thu 23-Mar-17 07:10:26

Thanks ladies, some interesting points here esp re settling. He goes to sleep from awake in his cot, though sometimes I have to practically pin him down for him to lie still enough to sleep. If no issues he can often sleep through until the dreaded 3.45 so a good few hours. Naps are another story - can't self settle and often wakes between cycles and needs a cuddle to go back to sleep. We haven't done any cc as I felt like he was making enough progress in the evenings and would get there by himself But like you I am also starting to think that with so much crying anyway might as well. It's a horrible way to start the day and he isn't getting the sleep he needs meaning all naps and bedtime are super early and I don't know how to push them back.

Will give the reset technique a go too! Worth a shot for sure.

adjsavedmylife Thu 23-Mar-17 07:10:45

Thanks ladies, some interesting points here esp re settling. He goes to sleep from awake in his cot, though sometimes I have to practically pin him down for him to lie still enough to sleep. If no issues he can often sleep through until the dreaded 3.45 so a good few hours. Naps are another story - can't self settle and often wakes between cycles and needs a cuddle to go back to sleep. We haven't done any cc as I felt like he was making enough progress in the evenings and would get there by himself But like you I am also starting to think that with so much crying anyway might as well. It's a horrible way to start the day and he isn't getting the sleep he needs meaning all naps and bedtime are super early and I don't know how to push them back.

Will give the reset technique a go too! Worth a shot for sure.

Anatidae Thu 23-Mar-17 18:24:33

See if you can borrow a weighted blanket too and give that a try. Good luck. Sleep problems suck!

We tried cc - not dissing anyone it's worked for bit for us o think it made things worse. I think (and this is my entirely unscientific personal opinion) thatch works ok of the issue is habit. I don't think it works so well if there's a strong emotional/anxiety reason.
Ds is obviously upset when he wakes alone, and has always had separation anxiety issues. Cc set us back quite a bit and looking back I can understand why. He was afraid of being left alone and we were trying to solve it by leaving him alone...
By contrast, its worked well for friends whose kids have been morejust in the habit of waking a lot.

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