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BF a 9 mth old during the night

(8 Posts)
GinaFordAteMyBaby Thu 25-Sep-08 10:53:13

I have still been BF my 9 month old dd during the night when she wakes and am starting to think it's time to cut this out. I think it's probably preventing her from sleeping through the night as she's used to either a BF or coming into bed with us when she wakes and won't settle herself back to sleep very often. I'm going back to work in November and it's probably time to really work on the night routine before I do so. I was planning on going cold turkey on the feeds during the night and was wondering a) if this is the best way to do it - I understand we will be in for a difficult few nights; and b) if there's any nutritional reason that she should still be feeding in the middle of the night. Grateful for any advice.

AussieSim Thu 25-Sep-08 11:04:21

No nutritional reason for a 9mth old to feel during the night. When she wakes it is suggested that you just try to re-settle her (read controlled crying if patting etc doesn't work) you could just try giving her less at the feed - pulling her off earlier. Some might say give her a drink of water. You might want to cure her of coming into your bed first and then secondly cure her of night feeding. IME 3 very disciplined nights should break a habit but then the trick is to stick with it. It is good to have reasonable expectations that things may slip with teething or illness or with changes in routine brought on by travel or whatever. Good Luck, Sim

skidaddle Fri 26-Sep-08 11:58:45

is that definitely true aussie that there is no nutritional reason for a 9 month old to feed during the night? I also have a 9 month old who wakes for feeds and I don't feel totally confident that he's not hungry, especially as he often doesn't eat much dinner (but has a good breakfast and lunch usually)

GFAMB - no advice I'm afraid but will watch this thread carefully to see what others say. I am very reluctant to try anything like CC personally but I also know that if I go to comfort him he will cry and cry for a feed and if DH goes he usually cries and cries for me so I don't know what the solution is..

francesrivis Fri 26-Sep-08 12:52:17

Just sharing a tip that worked for me - at 7 mths my dd was still waking 1-3 times per night to bf. I expressed some milk, watered it down and, when she woke, offered it to her straight from the fridge. She unsurprisingly turned her nose up and, after two nights of this, slept through and has done so pretty much ever since. I know some would consider this harsh, but if you're not comfortable with cc it's worth a try as it doesn't involve leaving them to cry.

GinaFordAteMyBaby Fri 26-Sep-08 22:05:10

Thanks for your tips.

Yeah, controlled crying is out for us too. We're in a flat at the moment and I'm not comfortable with leaving her to cry for that amount of time as I know my upstairs neighbour can hear her at least a little. When she wakes in the night she will sometimes go back with minimal soothing, sometimes a bit of water helps but mostly if this doesn't work I can get her off again if I hold her over my shoulder and rock her (although she is getting a bit heavy for this!). I started doing this quite recently the first time she wakes, then bf the next time.

I tried to just rock her every time she woke the other night, which worked but she was definately waking more frequently than usual. My husband had enough at about 4.30am and I ended up pulling her into bed - part of the reason I guess I have always tried to get her back to sleep with a minimal amount of noise in the first place is that he has to get up and go to work and blah blah blah. In retrospect, I hadn't discussed the fact that I was going to do it with him and it probably wasn't ideal timing as she's a bit under the weather at the moment. We've had a chat about it and we're going to try again next weekend when she's hopefully better and we can dedicate 3 nights to it. I think he's going to sleep in the living room so at least one of us can get some sleep and then maybe I can get a couple of hours when he takes her in the morning. Or we will take it in turns each night. I'll let you know how it goes.

francesrivis - that doesn't sound harsh at all! You've thrown me off a bit now because I don't know which to try. Maybe a combination.

Tangle Fri 26-Sep-08 22:19:28

I'm not sure I'm a good person to offer advice as I still BF DD to settle her and she's 18 months now blush.

I've looked for gentler ways of helping her to sleep and ones I've turned up have included Dr Jay Gordon and Elizabeth Pantley. The first makes a big thing about it being for babies over a year old, but I figure its your choice whether you want to try it earlier or not. The Pantley book has a whole host of suggestions that can help. So that may not actually be what you want right now...

Fingers crossed for you - I'd be interested to hear how you get on

Liz79 Sat 27-Sep-08 13:14:08

will be watching this as I am in the same situation with my 9mo DD. At the minute we're planning on DH doing the water thing in half term (he's a teacher), so he doesn't have to go to work the next day. Is supposed to be better if someone other than mum offers water so baby can't smell the real deal.

Tangle Sat 27-Sep-08 17:47:25

Liz - I think it very much depends on the baby. If DD wakes up and DH goes to her she will cry and cry and cry, getting louder and louder and more and more upset, until I can get to her. If I'm out, she'll keep it up for a couple of hours (or until he puts her in the car and starts driving). If he offers her water she just cries louder and pushes it away. She's less miserable if she's left in her cot to complain for 5 minutes than if DH picks her up. Maybe if we persisted she'd eventually cry herself to sleep in his arms but for us, at this time, that doesn't feel like the right way forward.

Fingers crossed it works better for you

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