6 month sleep(3 Posts)
My DD is 6 months old and has been a pretty awful sleeper since the 4 month regression, which in her case seemed to start at more like 3 months.
There doesn't seem to be a particular rhyme or reason to the wakings. A good night might only see 2 or 3 between midnight and morning, a bad night might involve multiple interruptions to the early part of the evening and hourly wake ups thereafter. In desperation the other night I put her in the bouncy chair (a basic, old school model) on the floor of our bedroom and miraculously she fell back to sleep for 3 more hours. I have since repeated this a few more times with similar success. There is something about being in the chair that seems to keep her asleep when she just can't / won't stay that way in her cot.
I have since learned that sleeping in chairs is frowned upon, although I haven't managed to find any properly sourced articles explaining why. Is anyone able to link to anything?
In your opinions, why can she sleep longer in the chair than in the cot? Is it simply the change of environment? (She always starts the night in the cot without fail) Is it being upright? The gentle bouncing movement? If either of those, is there anything safer I can do to get the benefit of the longer sleep without the risk? (Assuming that there are in fact risks to bouncy chair sleeping...) Or what else can I change to make her not need the elevation / movement? Given that I am waking up at least twice between going to bed and starting the day, I cannot hack the day beginning at any time that begins with a 4 or a 5 and currently the chair seems the only way to avoid that. I am gutted that what I hoped was a magic solution is potentially not very safe
Bouncy chairs are GREAT for naps - I use them for all daytime naps from birth to 6 months or so.
But they should not be used unattended (ie when you are not watching baby). So not for baby to sleep in while you are asleep - so not for nights.
The instructions on your bouncer will say "baby should not be left in bouncer unattended", or words to that effect. It is because babies will twist, try to turn over and reach for things. Because the bouncer is not the "firm, flat mattress" that SIDS recommendations suggest, it could easily too over if baby shifts it's centre of gravity by teaching or twisting. Then due to the restraining belt, baby could get trapped under the tipped over bouncer.
My bouncer (also no-frills old school) had age limit on it too - not to be used when sitying unaided. So watch for that. The reason for this is that baby could then sit upright, making toppling out of the bouncer even more likely.
If the bouncer is on the floor and you are watching baby while asleep in it (so not asleep yourself) then the problem is lessened since you will be there to stop any toppling over before it happens. That said, nothing has a deep risk.
As I said, bouncers are great for baby sleep. They do have limitations though and for over night sleep they are a risk too far for me. Information about safe sleep here:
Why are bouncers good:
- gentle movement
- head higher than stomach
- enclosed feeling
These can be recreated with:
- pram basket being rocked
- rocking crib?
- utilising movement for sleep in the day but teaching static sleep at night
- raising one end of the cot slightly (tons of tuna under cot legs at one end)
- sleepyhead mattress (or similar)
- swaddling when younger
- cuddling close to baby (sidecar cot or co sleeping)
Thanks Fatedestiny. I know you speak sense! Safety first, etc. DD is over 6 months now, so probably outgrowing the bouncer anyway.
We have done / do many of the things on your second list. We don't have (or have room for) a pram basket or rocking crib, but we do have a sleepyhead and have found that this can be 'rocked' gently which sometimes works. Swaddling was good while it lasted. For some reason, she does not want to co-sleep. Or at least that is how I interpret the thrashing around / flailing arms / arching back. Unless all babies do that and somehow others just put up with it?? She has not been a cuddly sleeper since about 6 weeks old...
Anyway, no more night bouncing (she says with a resigned and heavy heart) Thanks for your advice.
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