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random wake-up times can't do routines (for a 7 months) argh!!!

(10 Posts)
Cakebunny Fri 14-Oct-11 10:12:46

Is it me or are we the only ones who can't stick to any sort of routine?!

My DS is 7months old, he's EBF & feeds randomly, he wakes up in the night randomly, wakes up in the moring wide awake at random times. Although he does have a regular bedtime & try and do regular mealtimes (but difficult as he's tired at different times)

I've been watching him closely for a while trying to work with his 'natural sleepy, alert and hungary times' and just as I think ah-ha I've got it, things change to another schedule for a few days! It makes it real guess work to figure out what he needs sometimes as he says he is hungary but actually he want's to be comforted to sleep.

It's not such a big issue I guess, but i'd love to take him regualarly to a playgroup to meet other mum's but I'd rather find one that suits his awake times! Grrr! I know he does best on 3 naps otherwise we get meltdown at bedtime (although naptime 3 can be a real fight!)

Any advice anyone?
Will he settle on his own eventually do you think?

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 14-Oct-11 10:18:36

I'd have thought some kind of pattern would emerge by 7 months. If not, could you force the pace slightly by putting him down at reasonably regular times? Even if he doesn't sleep, exactly, the routine of 'quiet time' at the same points each day might regulate things. Also... you mention EBF but have you tried weaning? I know my DS's sleeping patterns changed when he started on solid foods. He could go longer between meals and his naps lengthened and were less frequent.

Mimmee Fri 14-Oct-11 10:26:03

Hi I know exactly what you mean my DD is 7 mo and just when I think we've got a routine sorted it changes!

I really think to an extent you just have to go with it and certainly don't let it stop you doing anything or going out (that way madness lies...I know grin)

One that I have found have worked to get her into some sort of "structure" to mealtimes is giving her a milk feed about an hour before solids.

I was struggling with the 3rd nap as well and have realised in the last couple of weeks she was ready to drop it. She has 2, naps one in the morning (depending on what time she wakes normally about 9.30-10) and one in the afternoon (about 2ish).

I have pushed bedtime forward now she doesn't have the late nap because like your DS she is hard to settle when overtired, so bedtime is now 6.15-6.30 ish.

Obviously timings change depending on what we've been doing so I don't think you have to be slavish about it.

Can't give you any advice on night time wakings though because they are totally and utterly random - so will watch with interest but you are not alone!

Cakebunny Fri 14-Oct-11 10:32:02

Thanks CES (for short!)
He is on solids and having them at pretty regular times (when he's not asleep!), will try and put him down at more regular times - it's just if he woke up later or earlier than normal it throws it all out the window as he gets tired for a nap at different times. If i leave him too long he goes overtired and if he's not tired enough he won't sleep...

Cakebunny Fri 14-Oct-11 10:38:18

Thanks Mimmee also,
Could try putting to bed earlier and try and cut out the last nap...Do you find she wakes up earlier in the morning then?
Glad i'm not the only one though!
& yes I think i will just have to say sod it and go out to a group!

Iggly Fri 14-Oct-11 11:21:07

You could wake him at the same time every day (unless he wakes super early) say 7 or 8. First nap about half 8/9 ish. Then lunch at 11.30, nap at 12.30, mid afternoon feed/snack at about 3, last nap no later than half 4.

When DS got to this age, I found sleepy cues were difficult to follow because he could keep himself awake a little longer. So I went for a mix of fixed naps (especially lunch and mid afternoon) and the morning nap flexed depending on what time he woke. Made easier by fixing meal, snack and milk times. By 9 months he dropped the afternoon nap and I went for fixed nap times which worked and continues to work now he's 2.

Iggly Fri 14-Oct-11 11:22:04

Also DS didn't wake early when bed early if he needed the extra sleep.

Cakebunny Fri 14-Oct-11 12:30:45

Iggly,
I think i like the idea of a flexible morning nap, i think that probably works best especially as he can wake for the day as early as 6 or sleep on until 7.30.

Was feeding on demand but it's making everything else so difficult to fix, so may try fixing his BF times a bit more...will probably try bottle feeding soon though so he is ready for when i go back to work.
I'll keep at, it he'll sort himself out eventually i guess!

Iggly Fri 14-Oct-11 12:52:10

I fed to a schedule at that age (unless he was ill, he'd not "ask" anyway) so made life a bit easier!

Cakebunny Fri 14-Oct-11 13:31:30

Thanks Iggly that is actually really helpful, thanks everywhere you go it's always 'feed on demand' and it makes you feel a bit selfish for trying to get into more of a routine. We pretty much know when he should be hungary (patterns are vaguely emerging on that score!) so think a schedule would work better for us as well. Also when we go to wean him onto a bottle (or hopefully just a cup but we'll see!!) I can drop a feed at a time - difficult when they are feeding all over the place!

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