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1yr old waking crying early in the night, happy during day

(6 Posts)
Trillian42 Tue 21-Jun-11 13:02:29

DD is 12.5months and started waking every 40 minutes early in the night. We've a video monitor and can see her - she starts crying before opening her eyes and wakes 3-4 times between bedtime of 8o'c and 10.30 when I usually go to bed and take her into the bed with me for the sake of peace.

She's in great form during the day, very happy and smiley so it doesn't seem like anything is wrong with her. I tried Calpol before bed the other night in case it was teething and it made no difference. My husband usually settles her at these times, and he said when he picks her up to soothe her, she arches her back to try to lie down again and is content when he puts her back down. He stays while she's falling back asleep, rubbing her back/side and then all's ok until the next wake up.

She kind of crawls around the bed when she's trying to sleep and collapses on her tummy, sometimes with her bum in the air. Have we an insomniac baby?

dietcokeandwine Tue 21-Jun-11 13:45:10

Not an insomniac, and nothing wrong with her, but what you most likely have is a baby going through any number of developmental leaps which can temporarily affect sleep. If she has recently started crawling/cruising/walking; if she has started babbling/talking more; if she is starting to develop separation anxiety, all of these may affect her sleep patterns. Overtiredness will most definitely affect it and your DD may be more prone to overtiredness at the moment if she is doing lots of new things during the day. From what you describe she is waking after every 'sleep cycle' at the moment and that may well be in part triggered by overtiredness (DS2, 20m, does exactly the same when overtired and always has).

So - it is a phase and it will settle - but to help her ride it out, try and avoid excessive overtiredness, continue to reassure her during the wakings as your DH is doing and you will probably find it calms down over time.

Trillian42 Tue 21-Jun-11 14:10:35

I thought about developmental leaps alright as she seems to have grown up so much in the last 3 weeks - cruising, feeding herself with a spoon shock and starting to ask what the word for things is (well by pointing to things and saying 'adaaa?' which to me sounds like what's that!) She also learned that she can push a kid's chair we got her over to a 'big' chair to climb up to the sink hmm

It's just that she sounds so upset when she wakes - like she's in pain almost. It really upsets me. My mum suggested it could be nightmares? The other night it happened while she was in bed next to me, so I picked her up immediately and tried to soothe her but she didn't seem to want me to pick her up and the only way I could get her to stop crying was to feed her.

dietcokeandwine Tue 21-Jun-11 20:37:24

That definitely sounds like an 'overtired' cry - when DS2 is overtired, it's a really hard, painful sort of wail, distressing to hear. What times does she nap in the day and what time does she go to bed? Do you think there's a possibility she could be overtired? Might be worth bringing bedtime forward by 15/30 minutes perhaps and see if that makes a difference.

Trillian42 Tue 21-Jun-11 21:22:38

It's amazing the things you realise when someone asks the right questions! We had a pretty good routine going where she'd sleep at 8ish and wake for the day at 7.30ish (she wakes all the time during the night but will fall back asleep as soon as fed) and then slept at 10.30 for 45mins - 1.5hrs and 3.30pm for maybe 45mins. She alternated which nap was longer usually. But she's started a couple of days a week with a childminder and it's all gone to pot (I've just put 2 & 2 together).

She's been taking her afternoon nap a lot later (she finishes with the childminder at 3.30) so despite taking her for a long walk straightaway afterwards, she doesn't nap until around 4.30/5 and then sleeps for ages - sometimes 2.5hrs. Then it's really hard to get her to fall asleep and there've been nights when she hasn't slept until after 9.30. The problem may be with the childminder 'forcing' her to nap too long in the morning maybe? I told her that DD sometimes has a long nap in the morning and she did use odd language saying she couldn't get her to sleep longer than 1.5 hours despite pushing her in the buggy for ages. The childminder also doesn't let her crawl very much, whereas I let her do her own thing - maybe she's less physically tired too for her afternoon nap. Then she sees me at 3.30, gets really excited and wants to play... no wonder I can't get her to sleep.

Is this making any sense?

dietcokeandwine Tue 21-Jun-11 22:25:23

yes definitely makes sense. I found the 12-15m stage hard with both of mine because they started to need less daytime sleep, but still very definitely needed two naps, and it was a bit of a juggling act trying to work out timings.

I agree about the longer morning nap being a potential problem - I always kept my boys' morning naps shorter at this stage with the aim that they would then have a longer one after lunch. From memory at your DD's age they were napping for about 30 minutes in the morning (usually at around 9:30, having woken around 7:30) and would then go back down for a post-lunch nap at 1pm ish. Then from about 15m they dropped that morning nap and had just the one long nap from about 12:30/1pm.

Might be worth seeing if your childminder could try something similar...that way she would have finished her naps when you collect her, and be tired enough (but not overtired) at bedtime?

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