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6mnth old sleeps to 4am and wont go back to sleep!!! Help

(11 Posts)
biddy1902 Sun 16-Aug-09 22:42:50

My son is 6mnths old and has never slept the whole night yet. He goes down around 9/10pm and up at 4am. Sleeps 11am for an hour and usually 3.30 for an hour.

He normally wakens from three am but usually at 4am everymorning. He lies in his cot talking first (which keeps me wakened) then started to cry. I would normally lift him and give him a bottle which he only takes 3oz, wind him, never look or speak to him and put him down again.

He still blethers and eventually starts crying again. I have left him but he would still be wakened at 5 - 5.30am until i give up and lift him again. Occassionally I have brought him into bed and he goes straight out til around nine.

This week I have tried giving him water and last night he screamed so much I heated the milk.

Any suggestions would be appreciated...

NanaNina Mon 17-Aug-09 00:03:09

Sorry Biddy but you are describing a young baby - he is only 6 months old. What do you expect of him? He sleeps for 7 hours and then wakes up and cries ..........well that sounds pretty normal to me. I know it's not good to be woken in the early hours but it's called being a mother of a young baby! It will pass and as he gets older he will sleep for longer if you're lucky. However with one of my children I didn't get a full night's sleep until she was well over 3.

Also worried about the "not looking or speaking to him" - sounds like you are trying some kind of behaviour modification as you would do with a pre school child having a temper tantrum. Your baby is 6 months old for god's sake - he's so so young. He needs all the nurturing youcan give him.

Sorry but I think you need to lower your expectations of this little baby.

sambo2 Mon 17-Aug-09 09:11:04

shock Nananina, I am really surprised by how unsupportive you appear to be! IMO, it is not unreasonable to expect a baby of 6 months to sleep longer than as described and if the baby has yet to sleep a full night, then she is clearly exhausted and looking for some friendly guidence. Biddy1902, has come to look for advice, not critisism!

Anyway Biddy, you have probably tried everything, but here are a few things that may help:

At 6 months,baby's should probably be encouraged to sleep a bit more during the day, as sleep tends to breed sleep. Could you bring his morning sleep to earlier? At this age my lo was sleeping 9-10am and then 12.30-2.30pm, then in bed by 7pm.

Is he on solids yet? Is he getting enough protein in his diet?

Is he is a sleeping bag (i.e. not waking because he is too cold/hot?

Have you blacked out every inch of daylight in his room (if they catch a glimpse of a toy etc, it can be enough to fully waken them!)?

Do you still dreamfeed at 10pm?

Are you sure there is no noise waking him? I play white noise into my LO's bedroom (and currently have a fan in there instead!) which really helps block out traffic noise!

I think your strategy of not speaking etc is excellent as your LO is learning to distinguish between playtime with Mummy and nighttime=sleep!

I will stop waffling, but perhaps if you give us an idea of his routine, they may be something that stands out that you can tweak? smile

p.s. one thing I will say in agreement with Nana, is that it always does get better!

herecomesthesun Mon 17-Aug-09 11:53:35

Biddy take no notice of Nananina, she must have been in a bad mood when she replied to your message.

It is so hard to get babies into a proper sleeping pattern and no two are the same, my dd of 22 months sleeps 7 - 6 every night and has done forever but my ds of 8 months is a bit like yours in that he wakes a couple of times a night, usually 12ish and 4ish which means I am often tired when dd wakes up at 6am.

At this age though a lot is happening, weaning, teething etc. and I think it is just normal for them to wake quite a bit really for one thing or another, I would say that my dd shouldn't be hungry because he has three proper meals a day plus 20 oz milk but he alway settles when I give him milk in the night when nothing else works (cuddles etc). I also try not to smile/talk/interact with him in the night so he knows it's sleep time and not play time. Unfortunately he always seems to settle when I lay him in my bed which is a bad habit that I don't want to get into so I sometimes do this until he has fallen back to sleep and then carry him back to his room.

Things will sort themselves out I'm sure, as they get older they usually sleep better.

KidsTunes Mon 17-Aug-09 13:33:08

My younger daughter slept through the night for the first time on Friday (her 1st birthday). Up until a week ago she was waking a few times to be fed every night, my wife was taking her into our bed and breastfeeding her - it was pretty low impact waking on account of the breastfeeding and co-sleeping, but I was pretty tired of it. My remedy was for me to take a week off work and, whenever she woke up looking to be fed, for me to lift her and keep her quiet so she wouldn't wake my wife and older daughter. I'd make a few attempts to get her back in the cot, but if it wasn't working I didn't worry about it - my primary goal was to stop her feeding in the night so she'd be hungrier during the day and eat more and then be less hungry the next night etc

And it seems to have worked. The last 3 mornings in a row she woke up after 6am (her previous record was 3 am). A few of the nights were tough (I got maybe 1.5 hours sleep on the second might) but hopefully it'll have been worth it

BiscuitStuffer Mon 17-Aug-09 22:03:42

NanaNina - you dreadful woman. Read your post as if someone had written to you. Shame on you.

biddy1902 Mon 17-Aug-09 22:14:18

I will thank most of you for your kind advice. First time mother it is nice to hear some peoples opinions and advice!!

I know that all babies are not the same but I have five friends including my sister-in-law who all had children around 10 days of a difference between us all and all there children are sleeping through. I am jus worried im not doing something right.

I dont talk because I am trying to let him see the difference in day and night.

I will try and get blackout blinds in our room and take down his mobile from the cot it is very colourful.

Anything is worth a try!!

Thanks again.

messalina Tue 18-Aug-09 23:08:54

I think people have told Nanania off already so I won't bother. Your issue sounds exactly the same as the one I had with DD, now 11m old. At 7 months she was still waking at least once, sometimes twice in the night, at fairly predictable hours. Usually it was between 4 and 5am but sometimes also around midnight. I breastfed exclusively for six months and then spent a further month weaning her off very gradually. That was part of the problem, I think, because it was always easier to feed her than try anything else. However, I had to go back to work full-time to a demanding job and needed a full night's sleep so I had to do something. I spoke to my HV about it and she was very helpful. She said that a baby aged 7m really should not need any food during the night, though I was welcome to continue to 10.30 feed if that made me feel more confident of not caving in at 4am. I was advised to go into her room when she cried and sit by the cot holding her hand and repeating the same simple phrase to her over and over again until she stopped. It was pretty hard the first three or four nights because I was so tired and then DH got sent abroad for work, which didn't helf. I think on night five she cried for 5 minutes and I decided just to see what happened before bursting into her bedroom to try the routine again. She went back to sleep until 7.30! Night six, went all the way through and has done ever since. Dropped 10.30 feed a week later. I wouldn't recommend this specific sleep training advice as you must talk to a professional about it. It's not great if you find it very hard to hear your baby cry for any length of time, but I found that as I was there with her holding her hand, I didn't actually feel at all guilty. And I knew that this had to stop. Talk to your HV and see what they suggest. Incidentally, my clinic didn't agree with controlled crying.

messalina Tue 18-Aug-09 23:16:57

Oh, and if you are concerned about your baby seeming hungry when you give him his bottle in the middle of the night, don't be, but again talk to your HV. When I said I was anxious about stopping night-feeding because DD seemed genuinely hungry when I gave her food at 4am, she said that a baby was hardly going to turn down a nice offer of milk to settle them back down, esp. if this was what they were used to. And I also asked her about the link Gina Ford claims exists between commerical baby foods and nightwaking. I fed DD quite a few jars for a while. She said this was bollocks and made up by Gina Ford to make mothers feel guilty, in all likelihood.

HarryB Wed 19-Aug-09 19:46:16

Biddy, I had the same with my DS - the early wakings are a killer aren't they so I really know what you're going through. After seeking advice on mumsnet, I started putting DS to bed EARLIER and it did the trick. He was 8.30/9pm - 4.30. Now he has his last feed at 7 and is down by 7.30 and sleeps till 6. He then napped better during the day too. As Sambo said, sleep breeds sleep, and I believe that too.

popsycal Wed 19-Aug-09 19:53:38

Want to swap for my 11 month old?
Sounds like a dream

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