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9mth old sudden nightmares??

(5 Posts)
Pebs Sat 16-Apr-05 09:14:30

Our DS is 9mths and has suddenly started to wake in the night (different times) after going 12hrs without a peep for months. He screams suddenly and there is no moaning before or any other warning which makes me wonder if it is a nightmare. Is it possible at this age? I've read that it's possible after 1yr. Also, how do we deal with it? DS is one of those babies who gets worse when he's checked on as he knows that he's being ignored but he obviously needs reassurance if he's scared. We've been going in once only for a few seconds so that he knows we are there and then leaving him to cry it out and he usually gets himself back off within 30mins (seems like 30hrs!) If it is nightmares what can we do to help prevent them? - if anything. Anyone else had nightmares with under 1's? Advice needed.

Seona1973 Sat 16-Apr-05 12:06:31

9 months is a very common age for sleep disturbances - more mobility, seperation anxiety, teething, etc.

My dd was like this for a while - waking up for no reason but we always responded to her. She got a quick cuddle to calm her down and then was layed back down in the cot. We would then stay in the room until she started settling down again. If she cried again we would pick up and cuddle as before. We only left the room when she seemed to be going back to sleep again (we dont agree with controlled crying/cry it out so have never left her to cry for more than a few minutes - and that just to see if she settles by herself first)

If seperation anxiety is a part of it, leaving your lo to cry could make it worse/make him clingy during the day.

Pebs Sat 16-Apr-05 18:31:39

Could it be separation anxiety with such a sudden cry? DS is certainly become a lot more mobile over the last couple of weeks. Why does this make their sleep unsettled?

Seona1973 Sat 16-Apr-05 19:02:38

I think its something to do with the extra activity overstimulating them and making it harder for them to calm down. Also I know my dd used to stand up in her sleep and then wake up crying cos she got disorientated and didnt know where she was/what she was doing. Does your lo wake in the first half of the night or the second? Night terrors tend to occur within a few hours of going to sleep and nightmares tend to be in the second half of the night. Night terrors can also be caused by overstimulation.

Pebs Sun 17-Apr-05 10:15:20

Any time between 12-5am. At least he does go back to sleep after about 40mins but I really don't want this to become a pattern by responding to it in the wrong way, but it's difficult as I'm not 100% sure of the cause. Separation anxiety would need reassurance, same with nightmares, but he definately calms quicker the less we go in.

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