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My 1 year old wakes for the day at 5:30am every single day… HELP

(31 Posts)
Rosebell100 Wed 15-Jul-20 10:34:30

So here’s the thing: my 14 month old DS wakes at 5:30/5:45am every day - there is no getting him back to sleep, no cuddling in bed, he is just up and wants to get up and play. I’m desperate to get him to sleep later, even just till 6am would be a bit more civilised.

I don’t think it’s the light, because we have a blackout blind and underneath that one of those stick on black out blind to get every single gap. And he’s in the darkest room of the house which does not really get morning light.

I read that he might be getting up early and compensating with a long morning nap. We were previously putting him down at 8:45 and letting him sleep until he naturally woke up, often an hour and 20 minutes. But over the last six weeks we have been really strict with putting him down at 9am and only letting him do 1hr. But this has made no difference to the early starts.

The rest of our routine is:
5:30am wake
6:30am breakfast
9 - 10 nap
12pm lunch
1:30 - 3pm nap (this is hit and miss sometimes he’ll do 40 minutes other days he’ll do 2 hrs)
5pm tea
6:10 bath time
6:30 bottle
6:45 bed - he is often asleep by 7, but it can be by 7:30 if he's taking a while to settle. He then sleeps perfectly (most of the time) until 5:30am. We have noticed that from about 3am, he is a light sleeper and would wake from a creek of floorboard if we went to the loo in the night.

Generally he’s a pretty full on kid - i wouldn't describe him as ‘chilled’ and he was a ticky sleeper to begin with, we sleep trained at 6months which helped enormously.

My best guess is he’s waking because he’s hungry - but he was born in the 91st percentile and he’s now 98th percentile - he has a good dinner and a bottle before bed and often has big belly at that point so I don't see how I could fill him up more. And I don’t want to start a night feed.

We haven’t tried consistently pushing bedtime back, but there have been occasions where he’s gone down late, but its made no difference to him waking at 5:30am. And if we had an unsettled night, this also wouldn’t make any difference.

Really welcome any thoughts!!

OP’s posts: |
Ricekrispie22 Wed 15-Jul-20 12:37:54

Perhaps he’s being disturbed by bird song or local traffic. Try white noise.

A one-off later bedtime won’t immediately undo his habit of waking early. Push his bedtime later and I reckon you’ll see the impact after 3 or 4 nights. Maybe restrict his lunchtime nap to 40 minutes and then give him another nap just before tea, say 5.30 - 6.30 while you cook.

Spottybluepyjamas Wed 15-Jul-20 12:39:55

Have you tried moving to 1 nap instead of 2? I would try lunch at 12, nap at 12.45 and bed at 7 and see how that goes. Hopefully you get a later wake up soon!

SistemaAddict Wed 15-Jul-20 12:41:30

I found this was normal with 2 of my dc. I just rolled with it and went to bed earlier. It doesn't last forever. 4.15 one morning was a bit much though!

audweb Wed 15-Jul-20 12:42:55

I found my daughter just went through a phase at that age of waking up so early and then it passed without me doing much to help it change. I just rolled with it. Like the other post 4.15 was the most painful, especially when I had to go work a 12 hour shift afterwards 😭

bellinisurge Wed 15-Jul-20 12:44:20

Had this too. I'm an F1 fan and watched more live faces from the Far East than I needed to .
Also a sign of true horror was "The Record Europe" on the BBC News Channel on Sunday. And I voted Remain!!

BurtsBeesKnees Wed 15-Jul-20 12:45:13

I hate to tell you but my 9 yr old STILL wakes at 5.30am grin but she does go to bed at 6.45 and sleeps all the way through. I decided some time ago to go to bed early so the early start wasn't a problem.

Pollyputthepizzaon Wed 15-Jul-20 12:45:27

Was the same when my youngest was this age. Nearly broke me as it was winter so pitch black and cold. The memory makes me want to weep!

Now he’s 4yr and a 6:30/7am riser. I can’t remember what we tried but I think we did a day of unlimited napping so that he could make it to a later bedtime and the. Consistently a later bedtime. As others have said it takes about 4 days for their body clock to change.

But I can’t remember if it worked. Mainly we had to roll with it but it was so tough (especially with a 2&4 year old as well so no downtime even when the baby did his morning nap)

JeanMichelBisquiat Wed 15-Jul-20 12:48:23

You're not going to want to hear this, but I think this is within the realms of normal and you may just need to work with it.

If he's sleeping through the night, and getting appropriate naps, it may just be he has quite an early to early circadian rhythm.

His naps are normal times and normal lengths for his age - I personally really don't think it's good for babies to be cutting back on normal length naps just to try and tweak bedtimes and wake-ups that are within the realm of normal.

If it was 4.30, I'd say treat it is as a nighttime wake-up, but 5.30/5.45 may just be the start of his day for now - with 12 years' experience of this (2 early wakers), I'd advise going with it rather than mucking about with otherwise good sleep.

(To put it in perspective, one of mine had sleep apnea and woke ever two hours max until after adenoid removal age 6 - so count your blessings grin)

ladyvimes Wed 15-Jul-20 12:51:24

This is normal. My ds6 still wakes up early now but at least he can play in his room by himself now. You have a one year old who sleeps through the night! I’d be happy with that!

bellinisurge Wed 15-Jul-20 12:55:36

Had this too. I'm an F1 fan and watched more live faces from the Far East than I needed to .
Also a sign of true horror was "The Record Europe" on the BBC News Channel on Sunday. And I voted Remain!!

Dd is 13 now and her later starts are bliss.

charlaz Wed 15-Jul-20 13:01:01

He sleeps through mainly? That's incredible! You're lucky smile I would say that for a 1 year old, it's totally normal. My 17 month old wakes every 2-3 hours at night and then wakes for the day at 5.30 as well. It will pass. The Facebook group "biologically normal infant sleep" has helped me a lot, I highly recommend. If you post this comment on that group they give brilliant advice x

charlaz Wed 15-Jul-20 13:03:40

Also, I know all babies are different but my little one was on 1 nap by that age, from 13 months I think. Up at 5.30-6, nap 11-1.30ish then bed at 7-7.30 x

picklemewalnuts Wed 15-Jul-20 13:04:12

You'll get a bit of a respite when he's able to play a bit in his cot, or turn the tv on!

It means you won't have too much of a battle to be ready for school when he's older, and you'll get quiet evenings too!

AriettyHomily Wed 15-Jul-20 13:05:06

Dts are 9 and still do this, sorry OP.

Stuckforthefourthtime Wed 15-Jul-20 13:06:25

1 nap would help I think too. Also, he's in bed relatively early and sleeping well - this could just be his way, and I'd personally just roll with it and go to sleep earlier, putting him down later might push him a bit later, but you probably won't get all the time back (in my experience you put them to sleep an hour later and they wake up 30 mins later).

BrokenLink Wed 15-Jul-20 13:18:28

If a baby wakes at a similar time repeatedly, it is supposed to help if you wake them half an hour before that time and settle them back to sleep. I would be inclined to combine this method with white noise, and a later bed time, as a belt and braces approach.

mincepieeater Wed 15-Jul-20 13:21:51

ds was like this. It was just he was done with sleeping! Being up at 5:30 am was normal, we just took it in turns to be up with him. CBEEBIES didnt start early enough!

LeafyGreen333 Wed 15-Jul-20 13:23:06

I have had this problem. I would limit his morning nap to 30 mins max (any longer and he is just compensating for the early wake up). This will hopefully make his lunch nap slightly longer (anything up to 2 hours is fine).

Once his body knows that he wont be able to make up for the early wake up in the morning nap then he should sleep in longer.

Strawberrywaffles Wed 15-Jul-20 13:27:23

It’s a phase just roll with it. I doubt any change in routine will help unfortunately! This happened with everyone in my NCT group.

DD did this and it lasted for about 6 months or so. We were getting 4.45/5am starts. If we put her to bed later than 7 she’d still wake up early and just be extra exhausted.

Things worked out by themselves and she just naturally was able to sleep later. I never thought I’d get a 7.30-7 but now it’s a regular occurrence.

Be kind to yourself and get lots of early nights.

nicenames Wed 15-Jul-20 13:50:20

My DD was one nap by that stage (actually by 7 months but that is just her!). Yes I think that the nap is impacting things to be honest. Some days your DS is getting 3 hours sleep a day by the sounds of things, which is quite a lot at 1 - most sleep schedules will suggest one nap of 2 hours at this stage. Could you try a nap 10.30-12.30 (or however long you can keep him up for to begin the nap on the first day) and then keep him up for rest of the day and then the next day if you think he is struggling by bedtime but can cope with longer awake before napping push back to 11-1pm etc. Don't let him sleep any later than 2pm, I would say!

Fatted Wed 15-Jul-20 13:57:15

Go to bed at 9pm so you're not as tired. It's normal for this age. Both mine did it. Sorry.

Ditch the two naps. Drag him out until 11.30 (might mean an early lunch) and then put him down then.

mistermagpie Wed 15-Jul-20 15:13:12

I posted almost this exact same thread when my son was one.

The answer was to move to one nap rather than two. So we just ditched the morning one and he would go down after lunch. Really quickly we saw a shift in his wake-up tome but he will always be an early riser so don't think there will necessarily be a magic solution that will make him sleep til 8:30 or something. My DS is three now and is up for the day at about half six, I'm fine with that though as we have two other kids so lies in aren't really a thing in this house!

mistermagpie Wed 15-Jul-20 15:15:46

Yes to an early lunch by the way. But if he's had breakfast at 7 then DS is ready for lunch by 11 (we've never really done snacks).

FizzingWhizzbee123 Wed 15-Jul-20 15:22:16

It’s likely a (horrible!) phase. Mine got better when he dropped the morning nap, if I recall correctly.

Does he cry? Otherwise I used to leave my DS in bed and not get him up until at least 6.30 (7am if I could get away with it), to try and maintain a regular wake time. But he was happy to roll around quietly in the dark.

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