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Genuinely hungry at night?

(3 Posts)
GrangeMouth Wed 17-Aug-11 10:13:02

My DS1 is 23wo and has stopped sleeping though. I can?t work out if he is genuinely hungry at night.

He?s EBF and until 16wo he slept for about 6 to 7 hours straight a night. At 16 weeks we went on holiday, he got a bit of a cold, did a bit of teething, maybe had a bit of a growth spurt which seemed to wreck our rhythm as I started to feed him when he woke and has never settled back down to long stretches of time. The teething has settled down now so not sure that is keeping him up.

He can go for 4 hours without a feed at the beginning of the night but thereafter wakes every couple of hours. Each time he wakes he seems desperately hungry and has a proper feed, even if I?ve only fed him a couple of hours before. If I try not to feed it can take up to an hour to settle him only for him to wake again half an hour later still upset and hungry.

Should he be able to go for more than one four hour stretch and how can I tell if he?s genuinely hungry or just used to a feed and cuddle at night so cries until he gets the comfort he?s used to? If he shouldn?t be hungry how do I get him to realise this? I?m not ready to go down the CIO/CC route. He?s not interested in solids at all and is quite a ?snacky? eater during the day eating little and often so I wonder if that?s just his style, but as he used to go longer without food at night I?d like him to do that again!

Also posting in feeding in case they have any pearls of wisdom too. Apologies if that?s not posting etiquette, only my second post.

debka Wed 17-Aug-11 20:20:57

I would say that if he is actually feeding at night, then he is hungry and you should feed him. DD2 was like this, although a bit younger than your DS, she was so busy looking and playing etc during the day that she didn't feed properly, so had to catch up at night. It was exhausting. She did get the hang of eating in the day in the end (and then started randomly waking instead, but that's a different thread!). She's now 27 weeks and sleeps through 11-12 hours.

I have to confess I'm not much of an expert on BFing as I tend to stop at around 8 weeks but my DD3 is one next week and has had a night time feed almost every night for the last six months (like your DS this started after teeth and a few illnesses) She is fully weaned, on proper food and has formula too. Totally unlike my other two girls I have come to the conclusion that she is just a snacky eater, even when EBF she wanted little feeds all day and night, and when I moved her onto formula she still didn't want to take full feeds, it was a full on military operation to encourage her to sleep through. I guess some children are just like that. Little meals and often! Afraid I don't have any answers, just sympathy!

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