Argggggghhhhh - will I ever sleep again?(10 Posts)
My DS is 6 months and a half months old. Up until we started to wean him four weeks ago he was EBF. He now has three small meals a day (some are a struggle, some aren't) but all his fluid intake is still from me.
He is STILL waking in the night. Once a night is a fantastic night for me but more often than not it's 2 or 3 times. When I have three terrible nights in a row it takes it's toll on me physically and mentally.
My health visitor reckons once a night for a feed is acceptable but any more than that DS is just wanting comfort. DH tries to console him the second and third times he wakes but sometimes he literally screams until he sounds like he's going to pass out and I have to relent.
Is this normal? Will it ever change?
It is totally normal for a baby to still wake several times a night at this age. He's not doing it because he's hungry so don't worry about that. In fact, giving him too many solids might cause him to get an upset stomach. 3 meals a day seems like a lot to me for a 6 month old, how much is he eating?
Your HV is trying to help but she's a bit misguided I think- also what's wrong with needing comfort? Why is it unacceptable to wake up more than once?
IIRC they start to go through a stage of separation anxiety at this age. I can't put DD2 (7 mo) down at the moment. It'll pass though. How would you feel about co-sleeping in the mean time to maximise sleep?
DS was on 1 meal a day at 6 months.
He should be having water too really.
Are you giving balanced meals? I had to be careful with protein vs carbs with DS. Plus windy veg caused trouble (greens, broccoli, peas). And dairy too. Even fruit in the afternoons was a no until DS's digestion fully matured (even now at 2 I'm wary). DS only had easy to digest carbs - sweet potatoes, potatoes, rice until he was a bit older. Then he had bread, pasta etc as well.
Plus you've got development leaps and teething too to content with at this age!
My DS now 21 was awful at this age, 4-6 times per night. At 7 months I sleep trained him from a book that was avidly passed around my friends. It worked for all of us with babies of similar ages, all were waking from habit and hasn't learnt to get themselves back to sleep. It involves 5-7 nights of absolute he'll (not much worse than yr current nights?) then silent nights! I'm off to search for the book, don't give up hope!!!!!
Don't know if this is the same book (long time ago when I used it!) Sounds similar. Basically you do controlled checking, leaving baby for 5, 10, 15 mins.... until he learns to get himself to sleep. You have to be strong, baby has to be min age of 7 months (check this), but it really works! You are doing him a favour aswell as youself.
Now, anyone know about sleep training for adults (see nickname!).
I would do plenty of reading on controlled crying before you do it, it's pretty polarising amongst parents. If you want to try something a bit more gentle then this book is very popular.
To answer your questions, yes it is normal and yes it will change! When is another matter entirely!
DS1 was just like that, and feeding him lying down and basically co sleeping with him in a side car cot saved my bacon, as I could doze as he fed. I really felt the pressure though (from others but mainly myself, plus I was a leetle tired) to try and 'sort him out' when he was about 15m, and I tried controlled crying (same sort of thing as 4aminsomnian suggests). I have heard it work many times but was a disaster for us, and I had to stop after 11 nights of it getting worse and poor DS becoming quite traumatised and withdrawn during the day.
Like euRouge says, read about both sorts of approaches. CC is not for every child. Try and listen to your gut feeling, I wish I had, as I feel that episode of CC cocked DS' sleeping up no end.
This is totally normal so please don't think you are doing anything wrong. My DS1 was ebf up to 18 months and used to wake up during the night several times until he was over 1 year. We used to co sleep so I could get rest but it was a very tiring time as from 9-12 months it would often be hourly waking!
When he was just over 1 year we tried him in his own room in his own bed (with a guard rail). We did the usual routine, bath, boob, book then my DH stayed with him until he went to sleep (took about an hour but no crying). My DH decided to sleep on the floor of his room that night expecting a tough time but he only woke up once after 4 hours and went back off to sleep after another hour or so but no crying. The next night we did the same and he slept for 9 hours solid!!! We couldn't believe it. He must have been more than ready for his own space too! I was especially pleased as I know I personally couldn't have done the controlled crying route etc...
Since then for about a year he needed to be read to in order to fall asleep (either by me or DH). This could take anything up to an hour but after that he would be asleep all night.
He is now 5 and is still a fantastic sleeper! Once he is in bed and had his stories we leave him awake and he is usually asleep within 10 mins. I could easily vacuum his bedroom without him waking up!
I stopped feeding my ds in the night at 8 months, but he still wakes up 1-3 times a night often - for comfort/a cuddle/sip of water. So cutting out milk feeds doesn't guarantee anything anyway!
My DS is nearly 8 months and wakes very frequently, often every 1-2 hours. We co-sleep and I really dont mind as this way I'm getting all the sleep I need and he's getting what he needs - whether comfort or food. It is certainly 'normal' at this age.
I also think 3 meals a day might be a bit much as you indicate some are a 'struggle'. Different babies start eating at different rates. My DS doesnt eat much at all and he's a big boy, certainly not hungry!
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