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Introducing formula?

(9 Posts)
Cathays Sat 15-Aug-15 20:58:42

My DS is nearly 7 months now and EBF apart from a few finger foods. The thing is, he has not slept for more than 3 hours since 3.5 months. Usually he wakes up every hour or two all evening and night and his cries ramp up until I feed him back to sleep. If I try to rock him instead he will scream the house down.

During the day he will sleep in the car, sling, buggy- anything moving, but always feeds to sleep before going down for the night.

My sister has suggested introducing formula to fill him up more at his last feed but I don't think he's hungry and tbh I do love breastfeeding him- just not all the time! I try not to cosleep as he wants to be attached the whole time and I find it very uncomfortable bordering on painful by the early hours.

He won't take a dummy any more and had stopped sucking his fingers to sooth himself since his two bottom teeth came through.

How can I get him to feed less at night? Thanks.

Milkyway1304 Sat 15-Aug-15 23:56:23

I think you have a feed to sleep association, not a problem that will be solved by formula! I'm not one to advise really as my 15 month old DD still feeds once most nights, but she can settle no problem without a feed from her dad so maybe that's worth a try. Took a few nights but minimal crying. Also take a look at some of the ideas in the No-Cry sleep solution.

Lightbulbon Sun 16-Aug-15 09:16:30

Cut the day time naps. He needs to learn to sleep in his still cot.

Do you ever put him to sleep in his cot during the day? He needs to learn that cot=sleep.

Try to keep him awake during journeys.

At 7 months I'd expect a baby to be eating more than a few finger foods. Is he having 3 meals a day? I'd up the amount of baby food rather than formula at this stage.

Try a big lunch at 12 and see if he will go down for a good sleep in his cot after that. Then no more naps til bedtime.

JiltedJohnsJulie Sun 16-Aug-15 09:31:34

Sorry, have to disagree with a few points from light, I can barely keep my 8 yo awake in the car if she's tired, think I would have had to stick pins in her to keep her awake at 7 months!

Also, having a few finger foods at 7 months is perfectly natural and is advised. Your milk will be far more nutritious than almost any solids so if you want to fill him up, best way is to feed him. How often, roughly, are you feeding in the day?

I'd also expect a 12 month old to have one big nap a day, not a 7 month old. Babies need naps for brain development. Usually at 7 months they are on 2 naps per day.

I'm not sure giving formula will help unfortunately and it will also slightly increase the risk of sids. I'd print this off and give it to your DSIL to read smile

JiltedJohnsJulie Sun 16-Aug-15 09:47:22

Oh and feeding to sleep is perfectly normal. I always thought that being able to knock them out with a feed was a benefit smile

There are things you can do that are fairly gentle. Upping the daytime feeds is a good one as is getting them outside as daylight helps with night sleep. Have a look at these studies on normal infant sleep. If you have a partner, could you get them to take lo outside in the morning? They might be able to get up 20 mins earlier, make a brew and both go outside whilst you have a shower or just snooze.

Have you come across Isis too?. It's a resource for parents who wish to make evidence based decisions on their baby's sleep. smile

Have a read of 12 alternatives for the all night nurser. I'm not suggesting you night wean, but some of the suggestions maybe helpful. In fact I'd have a good nosey at the sleep info on the site. He has some good resources, including foods to encourage sleep and 31 ways to get your baby to sleep and stay asleep.

If you have a local la lechwe league, they may have some books you can borrow on sleep or see if your library has a copy of the No Cry Sleep Solution by Elizabeth Pantley.

JiltedJohnsJulie Sun 16-Aug-15 09:49:33

Last link I promise, Bfing and starting solids. Don't forget it's called complimentary feeding for a reason smile

Cathays Sun 16-Aug-15 19:44:15

Thanks everyone!!

Milkyway I agree he is associating going to sleep at night with feeding. He's still in the bedroom with me and my DH as we're waiting for the paint to dry in his room. Sometimes DH can settle him but as my DS can see me in the room usually I give in after a while of him crying in DH's arms!

Lightbulb I will try to get him to nap in his cot, haven't recently as nights are so hard at the mo! I am trying to get more food in him, he's refused spoons so far so it's slow going with the finger foods.

Julie thanks so much for the links, I'll check them out. I do love feeding him to sleep really, just not all night long!

Cathays Sun 16-Aug-15 19:46:25

I'm going to hold off the formula anyway, thanks for all your advice. I think it's probably a sleep problem more than a feeding problem but feeding and sleeping are so entwined aren't they.

Milkyway1304 Sun 16-Aug-15 21:48:14

Very intertwined. My DD was a spoon refuser, bottle refuser and will only feed to sleep for me, but will be cuddled to sleep by her daddy if I'm not in the room. And if it helps I spent weeks teaching her to fall asleep by herself in the cot (gradual retreat) and it made no difference to how she sleeps at night. Some nights she sleeps through, others she wakes 1-3 times.

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